Tuesday, 20 June 2017

My Heatwave Essentials

My Heatwave Essentials
Unless you have been living in an ice cream van for the past few weeks, in which case I want an ice cream with a flake asap, you'll be well aware here in the UK we have had what can only be described as humid-hell. The UK has been hit with some lovely sunshine as well as very humid air which makes girls like me who wear makeup everyday, want to rip my face off and jump into a bucket of ice cubes, not even being dramatic.

Since the weather has been incredibly humid I have been reaching for products that will help keep my skin under control as well as my mood - Give me winter over summer any day.

Hawaiian Tropic Dry Oil Sun Tan | One of the first things I do on a daily basis whether the sun is out or not, is apply a sun tan lotion on my body. I have been reaching for the Hawaiian Dry Oil for the past year now as I love how easy it is to blend into my skin without that sticky feeling. It also smells amazing and the oily texture just makes my skin look so hydrated and healthy. I also use Bioderma SPF on my face to stop my face from burning/getting wrinkles as quick.

The Ordinary High Spread-Ability Fluid Primer | For £5.00 I wasn't expecting much, however, this lightweight serum-like formula is amazing for my complexion. It helps avoid unnatural and uneven accumulation of pigments, especially around my eyes. I LOVE this primer, this is my second bottle of this stuff it is amazing during this heatwave as it completely blurs out any imperfections and keeps my makeup at bay, without any touch ups. I just love how healthy my skin feels when I wear this and I am not as self conscious about my makeup melting off as quick when I wear this. Full Review here.

NYX Matte Finish Spray | Ideally, I would reach for the Urban Decay Setting Spray, but times are hard and I'm having to adult by watching my spending. A setting spray is great for this humid air, it just helps keep your makeup looking fresher for longer and it's a good little refresher throughout the day. I always spray this on my face before I leave the house just to keep my makeup at bay.

Avene Eau Thermale Spring Water | A handbag staple has got to be this spring water, I spray this all the time to refresh my skin and keep me from melting. It has been a life saver during this heatwave and it's not only amazing for sunburn but for rashes, irritations, razor burns, to set makeup and even great for travelling. Definitely a must have!

What has been your go-to product during the heatwave??

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Making The Most Of Your Notebooks

Making The Most Of Your Notebooks
It has come to my attention that I own so many pretty, unused, marble/copper notebooks that I could possibly start my very own stationery shop. We'll call the shop Crazy Notebook Lady. The peculiar thing is I can't ever bring myself to start writing in these books because they're just too dainty to ruin the binding, am I weird? Perhaps.

I recently had a massive clear out and realised I need to stop admiring my pretty notebooks and put them to use - that way I can buy more pretty ones, that's my logic anyways.

If like me, you have a problem with buying unnecessary notebooks I have a list of ways you can put them to good use.

1. Daily Journal - A little bit like a teenage diary, only you don't write you have a crush on Johnny Depp, instead at the end of everyday take a few minutes to write down what you did that day or if in doubt I always like to write a sentence of what has made me smile that day. A little bit like the 5 Year Journals you can buy, but with your own spin.

2. Lists - Keeping a mental note in your head of what you need to accomplish everyday can be a little overwhelming, which is why writing a list of groceries you need to buy, chores you need to do or any other errands down creates more space in your brain. If you have 2 or 3 notebooks floating around, maybe use each one for different specific lists, so one could be food related, one money/bills and the other for miscellaneous everyday bits. I am a sucker for a good list.

3. Creativity - If like myself your brain ticks with ideas at the most obscure moments, (usually in the shower) it is worth carrying a notebook with you just so you don't forget those inspirational thoughts. This doesn't have to be anything momentous, it could literally be DIY photo bunting, something relating to your course/work or wanting to sell your old clothes on depop. Just simple thoughts you are wanting to get off your chest which you know you'll forget about later.

4. Passwords, Codes, Etc - In this day and age, we need usernames and passwords for pretty much everything online so it's quite difficult to remember every single one of them, which is why it's always good to write them down in a notebook so you don't accidentally lock yourself out from spending money on ASOS. Then again, is that really a bad thing? Saving money hack right here.

5. Record Your Dreams - Sounds a little adolescent but I have a thing about psychology and discovering the reasons behind my crazy dreams. If a dream repeats itself or lingers I like to write it down and keep track of what it could mean. I even have a dream app which gives me an understanding why I have dreams and what they are connected with. This is always amusing to look back on.

6. Your Thoughts - If like me, you have a tendency to overthink or worry about things, it might be worth jotting those emotions down in a book. I was told in one of my anxiety sessions to keep a mental note on my thoughts everyday, this is a good way to track what goes on in your mind and a therapeutic way to get them out on paper, sometimes you realise things aren't as bad as they seem if you write it out in front of you.

7. Recipes, Healthy Tips - I recently bought the book Eat Pretty, Live Well by Jolene Hart which is filled with 85 foods to their beautifying benefits (review soon). This book inspired me to keep a notebook on all the foodie things I want to remember. Whether that's healthy recipes to try, benefits of certain foods and their impact on my health or other general tips that I know will come in handy.

8. Inspiration - We all get those days where we lack inspiration or motivation so writing down quotes that inspire you is always a good way to go. Sounds a bit strange but I used to write the famous Harry Potter quote 'Working hard is important, but what matters more is believing in yourself' in the front of my notebook when I was at university to remind me why I started - I even have this quote on my bedroom wall. But, keeping a notebook of inspiring quotes or just little pick me ups is a very useful thing to do.

9. Future Plans - Writing down your goals or ambitions to achieve every week is always a good way to use up notebooks. This could be simple things like wanting to eat at home more, try squatting an extra 5kg in the gym, little achievable goals that you can tick off every week.

What do you write in blank notebooks??

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Battling Breakouts

Battling Breakouts
Is there an age on when to stop getting spots? The answer is no. I have spent so much £££ and time into my skin over the years to realise this. Now at the age of 23 I still suffer with the occasional hormonal breakout and yes it really does suck. I have learnt to accept that having oily skin has its advantages and disadvantages, therefore when I do get a nasty little breakout I am prepared with some products.

This is an updated skincare post on what products I use at the moment to help with any breakouts.

Alpha H Liquid Gold £33.50
I was recommended this by a family member in the hope that it'll fix any areas on my face that breaks out. The week leading up to and during 'the time of the month' I get breakouts around my chin and brows, (weird I know). Therefore, before bed, I like to pour some of the Liquid Gold onto a cotton pad and apply it to the areas I've broken out. By the morning my skin just looks that little bit clearer and brighter. This product contains glycolic acid (AHA) which is amazing for balancing out your skin and helping with dark spots, scarring and sun burn. I only use this once or twice a week because it is an acid and I try to keep my skin in as much balance as possible, however I would highly recommend this to anyone who is after an exfoliating spot treatment.

The Ordinary Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1% £5.00

In simpler terms Niacinamide is vitamin B3 which is indicated to reduce the appearance of blemishes and congestion. I absolutely love this brand I have reviewed a few more bits here. This brand is very abnormal, authentic and sold at amazing prices! I apply this product before bed when my skin is in need of a light refresher. I find this really helps with reducing the appearance of imperfections, like it almost blurs them? By morning my skin feels amazing and looks a lot more radiant. I don't even know how to explain how amazing this product is!

Acneside Benzoyl Peroxide £7.00
I have mentioned this product in my last Top Spot Treatments post and still to this day I use this gel. If I can feel a painful or biggish spot appearing I apply this gel to that area just before bed for a few days as it can be quite drying to my skin. There isn't much to comment on this product it just really helps with any redness and reduces any swelling of spots I might have a lot quicker.

Dermalogica Overnight Treatment £45.00
I got this in a set with a few other treatments for breakouts therefore I didn't pay £45.00 and to be honest I don't think I would. I love this product, but not enough to repurchase, especially at that price. I apply this to my skin overnight when my skin is feeling too dry for the above two products. This helps calm inflammation and eliminates bacteria that contributes to congestion. I find this a really good product to wear underneath makeup or alongside other products.

Similar Posts
Trialing out The Ordinary

What products do you use to stop breakouts??

Thursday, 25 May 2017

How To Have A Digital Detox

How To Have A Digital Detox
If you find yourself religiously going through Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat every morning like you're reading The Sunday Times, or your Netflix account is asking if you are still there 4 hours later, then you may be in need of a digital detox. Now I know you all probably sat thinking Katie, I am not ready to break-up with my phone, but unplugging and winding down away from technology is more beneficial than you actually think.

Some of you might remember I set a goal in 2016 to step away from my keyboard every evening and to put my time to better use. Since then I can honestly say I've had a much better nights sleep and I've found that I'm a lot less stressed before bed, so my little brain is able to close all those stressful tabs and totally relax. I've put together a post on simple ways to give yourself a digital detox and whats worked for me.

1. Step Away From Keyboard - As difficult as it is, detaching yourself from your laptop around 7-8pm and taking a long bath or winding down with a chamomile tea is much more beneficial. When I was at university I'd get into a habit of studying until right before bed and end up not being able to get a good night's sleep. I know it's easier said than done, but if you detach yourself from your screen you'd be surprised at how well you sleep.

2. Read In Bed - I am the worst for hopping into bed and checking all social media apps until I fall asleep, however, I've recently been getting into a routine of not going through all apps and instead picking up a book. I personally love being snuggled in bed with a good book.

3. Leave Phone At Home - If you've got plans to go to the gym, walk the dog or pop to the shops, it's worth leaving your phone at home. Your mind is a lot more open and focused on the task at hand if you know your phone isn't near you. Plus, it's nice to not always feel as though you need to check your phone when you're in the middle of doing something.

4. Delete Social Media Apps - I sometimes find social media can trigger my anxiety or change my mood, therefore it's worth deleting the apps for a couple of hours every now and then. I went through a faze of deleting my Facebook app and I can honestly say it really changed my mood, I was a lot more focused on myself. It does sound a bit extreme, but having a social media detox does more good than you think and you quickly discover you don't need to keep tab on everything viral.

5. Use Paper - Writing to do lists on our phones isn't as restorative as writing on paper, what I mean by this is keeping all your thoughts onto one device isn't healthy. I like to keep all my lists in notebooks and I find my brain isn't as distracted or tempted to do other things, whereas it is when I write them on my phone.

6. Give Yourself Deadlines - I actually learnt this technique from my therapist, but basically if you write down what you want/need to do, give yourself a time frame on that specific task. So if you want an evening watching Stranger Things on Netflix, then give yourself a time of 2 hours and stick to that. Sounds tedious, I know, but you appreciate things a lot more when you do this and have more motivation to do other things.

How do you unplug from technology??

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

5 Ways To Control Anxiety

5 Ways To Control Anxiety
Anxiety is a bitch. There, I said it. I haven't really touched upon anxiety on my blog - my reasons why? 1. So many people communicate about it now, which is amazing, but I didn't want to seem as though I was following suit. 2. I was only technically 'diagnosed' with it 6 months ago, so it's still really raw and personal to me. However, I told myself I wanted to document situations in my life like this to look back on and who knows hopefully help someone along the way. 

I am in no way an expert on mental health these are just what I've found work for me. It has taken me just under 5 months to have my anxiety under control, of course, some days it spirals out, that's normal, but those moments I can feel it building up I try to prevent it with these simple ways before it escalates.

Long Walks
I always read articles and blog posts on how people cope with worry and 9 times out of 10 walking is always mentioned. I can 100% see why. It wasn't as easy walking much during the winter, but since flowers are starting to grow and the sun is shining, I find walking a lot less hassle during the warmer seasons. Recently I've walked that 40 minute journey home from work and going on nice long walks on my days off down the beach. When you go for a walk you surround yourself with nature and concentrate on the atmosphere around you. If I am feeling anxious or stressed walking really helps eliminate them thoughts and opens my mind to other things.

Break Up With Phone
I can't really percentage how much my phone can give me anxiety, but it definitely has in the past and I'm sure it has for most people. Social media, the news, not being able to contact someone, all these things can trigger worry and stress. If I know I haven't got a busy day I tend to reach for my phone a lot more than when I am, so what I like to do to avoid repeatedly checking is leave it across the room from me and focus on something else. I've been reading more in the bath and leaving my phone in the bedroom, or I've turned notifications off whilst playing a game, just little things that let your brain focus purely on one thing. This might not work for everyone, but a digital detox definitely helps with anxiety (I have a post on digital detox soon).

Write It Down
Another way to control anxiety that people suggest is writing down what is causing your anxiety and how it can be prevented. Saying things out loud or writing it down gives you a different perspective on what goes on inside your brain. I had a couple of therapy phone-calls when I was suffering badly with anxiety and depression, and from those sessions I learnt a lot. Writing down the date, the time, what triggered the anxiety and questioning will it be relevant next month? can really open your mind to the core of what's worrying you. Keep a notebook just for your thoughts and look back on them, you'll be surprised to see the difference. Don't write them in your phone though!

Surrounding yourself with positive people, objects and atmospheres does change the way you view everything around you. It can be as simple as refreshing your room with some daffodils, treating yourself to a slice of cake or repeatedly play The Beauty and the Beast Soundtrack. Just whatever works for you it doesn't have to be anything 'out there' just open your mind to simpler solutions. I am easily pleased and simple minded, it doesn't take much to make me happy, if I choose to be positive. A book that helped me rethink my way of life is The Life Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck By Sarah Knight.

Remove Toxins
I saved this one for last because I know it's probably the most challenging and something we all try to avoid and that's changing things in order to be better. Sometimes this is easy, deletes off Snapchat, done. Other time's it's a lot harder to remove toxic things from your life. Things like stressful jobs, harmful friendships, bad diets, regrets, jealousy, etc, all these affect your mental health. If you have toxic influences and bad habits, you are not going to be happy. I have a quote "nothing is permanent, don't stress yourself too much because no matter how bad the situation will change". You may not realize it now, but in the long run changing and removing toxins from your life has I'd argue from personal experience has the biggest effect on your well-being.

I hope this post was helpful to anyone going through anxiety or for anyone wanting some personal insight.

How do you control anxiety??
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