Tuesday 23 February 2016

Skincare | 3 Vegan Hand Creams

It's finally cold! So I thought I would share with you some hand creams that get me through the drying weather. I find my hands dry out easily, especially as I work with food and have to wash my hands all the damn time! I don't know how much I can really write about hand cream - I mean, you rub it into your hands to moisturise them, you don't need much of any of them and they all work really well. So like, enjoy the pictures? Have one from each price range :)

Superdrug Hand and Nail Cream - £1.99

This one is for us poor people! It's great for both your hands and nails which makes it extra awesome for us hand washers. A combination of nail polish and frequent hand washing made my nails brittle and break easily - this has helped a lot! It smells like classic mum's hand cream, to me at least. I haven't a clue what the smell actually is but it is neither particularly nice or unpleasant. It just is. It's fine. The cream is effective and affordable. Superdrug always have offers on too, so you can usually buy a few ..tubes(?) really cheap and stock up.

While I love Lush, I don't tend to like the scents of their skincare products, however effective they are.  I must be the only person in the world that hates the scent of lavender, which is in  most of the Lush skincare products I use. Upon receiving this for Christmas I was excited to have more hand cream but apprehensive about whether I'd actually like it or not – but it smells divine, so I use it all the time. I'm rubbish at scents but it smells a little citrusy to me, somewhere in there. My hands are so soft post-Christmas! 

Arbonne FC5 Ultra-Hydrating Hand Crème* - £21.00

This is the luxury hand cream of the list. It's gorgeous though. It feels really silky as you rub it in and has a mild, pleasant scent that reminds me of citrus infused water. It sinks in really, really quickly, it's impressive. It seems to provide a protective layer that keeps moisture in, but isn't at all greasy.

Of course the most appealing thing for me is that, like all Arbonne products, it is free from all the rubbish usually found in cosmetics (including dyes, non-botanical fragrances, mineral oil, formaldehyde, gluten and even parabens if you're avoiding them). The company source ingredients sustainably and their products are botanical. I love them!

To buy Arbonne products you need to go through a rep, and as Camilla Gray kindly gifted me this cream to try out, here is the link to her rep page.

What are your Holy Grail hand creams?

*DISCLAIMER: This post contains a PR sample but my views are 100% honest. (I'm a rubbish liar).

Tuesday 16 February 2016

"You're not obese, you're [insert compliment here]."

...is what I hear when I tell people I'm obese. Two things:

"You're not obese"

Well, I am. It's not really up to you how much I weigh. The NHS and whatnot define obese as having a BMI of over 30, which I have. I know the BMI Scale is a load of shite and other people come to realise this when I tell them that I qualify as obese. The proper meaning is grossly overweight - how does one define what that is? I don't know. The BMI Scale doesn't work while television pairs the word with images of people who are over 20 stone. This is obviously people are confused when they hear I am obese - I'm not very round. However, by the most used definition in this country, I am obese.

"You're beautiful/gorgeous/whatever compliment."

Why are these things mutually exclusive? Come on, people! We're better than this!

I don't tell people I'm obese because I find it to be a negative thing and want some sympathy or an ego boost. I find it pretty funny, to be honest. It always surprises people. Just like when I tell them I'm closer to 15 stone than 14, and that I wear a size 18-20 when apparently I look like a size 16. It's also earned me the nickname Old Beast which is bloody hilarious. What's even better is my boyfriend who has a great big belly is merely overweight whereas I am obese and look less obviously fat. The whole thing is just a big joke on BMI Scale in my opinion. Maybe think about how you react to things like this, though. Please don't tell anyone they're not obese but are beautiful because if a doctor tells them that they are obese, they may feel super duper ugly. We don't need more of that!

Now, go flirt with yourself in the mirror ;)

Tuesday 9 February 2016

Spoonie Make-Up | I Promise I'm Awake

One of make-ups uses is for us spoonies to mask how ill we are. While I have invisible illnesses, I still look rougher than the average bear when I haven't slept for 9 hours. I have found a quick and effortless trick to looking more awake by using Dynamic liquid eyeliner from Lush, as eyeshadow.

*** These pictures were taken on a rubbish phone camera and my left eyebrow wasn't co-operating at all that day but I hope you get what I'm on about :) ***

As with my Lips and Lashes look I use these products:


And whatever lip balm or gloss I feel like on the day. 

The Eyeliner is a gorgeous, shimmery, orangey gold with hints of peach. It sparkles in a way that brightens your eyes right up. You look so awake!! It makes any blue in your eyes pop and distracts people from any signs of fatigue. All it takes is a line of this across your eyelid smudged and blended out to give the affect that you're a healthy person who knows exactly what's going on. Hell, it'll make people believe you understand what they're saying to you when your brain is full of fog and only picking up on key words.

I love the way that as it dries and settles, you get more of the product along your lash line so it looks like you've applied shadow and liner rather than cheated. It also looks lush. 

I use this shade of blush with it because it is the lightest I have and also adds a little more shimmer to the party. It has a bit of orange in it somewhere to compliment the eyeliner-shadow, too. Also, the name reminds me of ballet which makes me happy.

I enjoy this look in the spring and summer as the colours are all bright, light and pretty. I'm sure the eye“liner” will go with some nice bronzer, peachy or goldy blush and all sorts. I will definitely be wearing it with highlighter when the sun comes out of hibernation. I'm not going to pretend to be an expert on make-up or anything - I'm sure you know more about how to wear a single eyeshadow, but I'm quite good at faking healthy!

Do you use any Lush eyeliners or have any tips on saving energy with make-up? I'd love to know!

Have a sparkly day!

Wednesday 3 February 2016

Pilates & Yoga Weight Loss | Guest Post

This week it is my pleasure to bring a post written by Peter MinkoffPeter is a yoga enthusiast and fitness lover writing at My Empowered World magazine. He is dedicated to healthy living, exercising and spending time outdoors as much as possible. A firm believer in organic diet for overall health benefits, Peter is powered by true motivation in all aspects of yoga and fitness-ing. He hopes to run his own yoga and fitness center someday. Today he shares with us his advice for losing weight with help yoga and Pilates, something I, personally hope achieve! :)

Often, yoga and Pilates are considered mere stretching and toning exercises and their contribution to weight loss is being overlooked. Still, these two activities are so diverse that they have the capacity to transform your body, if done properly and with that goal in mind. Celebrity yoga trainers Ana Brett and Ravi Singh, who have worked with stars, such as Gwyneth Paltrow and Madonna, also believe in yoga’s weight loss powers and Pilates can truly make your weight loss efforts much easier by increasing lean muscle and toning your body. Let us see how else these two activities can help you lose weight.

Yoga and Weight Loss

A study published by American Journal of Managed Care found that restorative yoga (yoga that does not feature flowing body movements or challenging poses, but focuses on relaxation instead) can trim subcutaneous fat in overweight women, even more than other, more demanding kinds of yoga. It is also known that yoga reduces stress, and thus slows the production of cortisol – the hormone responsible for stubborn belly fat. Yoga, on any level, can help achieve the mind and body balance, which can actually change your perspective for some bad eating habits. That consciousness translates into a better appetite control and works as a spiritual stimulus for making changes.

Pilates and Weight Loss

Pilates is a body-toning program that improves muscle control, core strength, flexibility and coordination. It requires different exercising tools, such as resistance bands, rings, balls and other smaller props. According to American Council on Exercise, Pilates features some exercises that can strengthen the abdominal muscles and the back, improve posture and flatten the belly. The technique is based on using one’s body weight as a resistance and it includes a number of range-of-motion exercises. Similarly to yoga, it promotes body/mind connection which leads to body awareness and better eating patterns.


In spite of all these facts, you cannot expect that yoga or Pilates will torch of thousands of calories. Even power yoga, which is considered to have the best fat burning potential, burns only 300 to 400 calories per hour. The most important benefit yoga carries is a new awareness of your body which prevents overeating. There are no credible evidences on how pilates affect weight loss, but it does build muscles, which, in turn, boosts the fat burning process. Neither one of these two activities can help you lose weight without reduced calorie diet and including some other physical activities. Still, if you are recovering from an injury or have some chronic illness which prevents you from engaging in more demanding exercises, Pilates and yoga can be great ways to remain fit.

How to Get the Best Results?

There are two things that play a major role in the effectiveness of your Pilates/yoga weight loss program: your decisiveness and a fitness instructor. Finding a fitness instructor that will match your goals, needs and personality can be very challenging. There are several things a person which will train you should have: Pilates instructor certificate (from a credible Pilates institution), a professional should also have a certified diploma of disability (if you are recovering from an injury, are prone to injuries or suffer from a disease) and a supportive character. After you truly decide that you want to commit to weight loss regimen, you should create a strategy which will include Pilates, yoga, cardio exercises and healthy diet. Take certain days to practice cardio workouts and devote the remaining days to muscle recovery and relaxation with yoga and Pilates. Focus on healthy foods and smaller portion sizes to additionally improve your chances of success.  

Can You Do Yoga and Pilates at Home?

Let us face it, not every one of us can afford a personal fitness trainer, so we have to play with the cards we are dealt with. Fortunately, it is perfectly doable to practice yoga and Pilates at home. For the first, you will need a mat and for the second a Pilates ball, resistance bands, and similar props. YouTube tutorials sometimes are not sufficient, because anyone can make it and they do not show everything you need to know, so it is better to equip yourself with quality yoga and Pilates DVDs and books or even join an online class, which is cheaper and offers similar benefits. Take 25 minutes per day to get your body in shape, and if you are committed enough, you will succeed, regardless of the location of your workout.

Both Pilates and yoga have undeniable benefits. Still, if you focus just on these activities your chances of losing weight are small. Instead, combine them with healthy diet and occasional aerobics exercises and you will see how fast you will lose the stubborn fat.

You can find Peter on Twitter and Facebook :)

Do you practice yoga or Pilates? I am determined to get back into yoga this year! Do let us know if you have any advice on yoga, Pilates and weight loss or practicing these exercises with a chronic illness in the comments below. Big love.