I’m Back…Mostly!

It’s been an embarrassingly long time since I wrote a blog post and this is my attempt of slowly easing myself back into it.

I’m coming back at a slightly different angle, in so far as I wont be focusing on beauty blogging. Don’t get me wrong, I wont be avoiding talking about any fab products I discover and If I feel a product warrants a review I’ll certainly make it my aim to do so as those are things that are relevant to my life which is what this blog was meant to be from the start – it was never meant to solely be a beauty blog… it just sort of happened that way. The reason I’ve decided to take a side step away from that genre is because I feel like there’s so many other beauty bloggers who are able to be more true to it and do a far better job of it for various reasons.

As for what the heck actually is going to be on my blog….it’ll be as much as a surprise to me as it will be to you. I’m just going to go with it and see what happens but you can certainly expect there to be life style type stuff thrown in there, personal and reflective writing of sorts and anything else I feel like sharing and think people need to know about.

Another difference to my last blogging attempt is that I’m not going to put pressure on myself to constantly be putting out content. I plan on this being a light hearted hobby as opposed to the next big thing. If I force myself to spew out content constantly, the quality will surely suffer and no one will want to read it!

But anyway, for those of you who don’t know or remember, I’m Louise. I hope you’re all having a great day! Happy Blogging x

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Six Steps to Improve and Maintain your Mental Health

In a perfect world we’d feel happy and fresh all the time. However, in reality we can sometimes feel a little deflated, uninspired and generally a little sad. As someone who’s suffered from depression in the past, I definitely don’t want to slip down that slope again and have pinpointed a number of basic things that help lift my mood when I’m not quite feeling myself.

These steps aren’t purely for people with a diagnosed mood disorder, they’re for anyone everyone who can sometimes feel a little low.

Step One: Take Exercise

exerciseTaking exercise has been scientifically proven to improve your mood. When you exercise your body produces endorphins which, amongst other things, lifts your mood. The good news is, you don’t need to go out for a 5k run to reap the benefits of endorphins, going for a brisk half an hour walk will, more or less, have the same effect. Doing around half an hour of some type of exercise each day will keep your mind feeling sharp and a lot more positive (as well as the obvious physical benefits).

Step Two: Get Enough Sleep

PrincessAuroraSleepsA well rested brain, is a happy and effective one. If you’re sleep deprived you can become forgetful, spaced out, paranoid and stressed. Getting enough sleep throughout the week (not just sleeping loads at the weekend) helps stabilise your mood, making you less moody and generally a little brighter.

Step Three: Find a Hobby

electric_guitarDon’t spend your spare time moping about watching rubbish telly! Find something that you enjoy and do it regularly. This could be anything from a sport to joining a book club. Your hobby doesn’t necessarily have to involve socialising with others, so long as you get a sense of satisfaction and enjoyment from what you’re doing, you’re bound to feel a lot more productive and cheerier!

Step Four: Look After Your Space

This is something that I find lifts my mood massively. When my bedroom is cluttered and dusty, that’s the way my brain feels as well! When my bedroom is organised and tidy, I feel like I function as a human being logo-1_1786566cten times better. I’m not rushing about trying to find things or stepping over heaps of clothes and I enjoy my surroundings.

Not only cleaning and tidying, but adding little accents to your bedroom or home that make you smile and feel cosy can also make it feel a lot more comfortable. For example, framing photo’s that make you smile, adding fairy lights or lighting candles or adding a comfortable bed/sofa throw or rug.

Step Five: Socialise With People You Love 

maxi-koiranpennut_articleActuIt can sometimes be hard to catch up with everyone you’d like to if you have conflicting and busy schedules but try and find time to spend time with the people that make you smile! Forget the friends that bring you down and cause unnecessary drama and focus more on organising nights out/in with the people who make you laugh and feel good about yourself. Hiding away in isolation with only yourself and your thoughts for company is enough to make anyone cry.

Step Six: Switch Off

Instant communication and social media has it’s place but can also be very addictive and unhealthy. In the words of Olive’s teacher in Easy A ‘I don’t know what this generation’s fascination is with documenting your every thought, but I can assure you, they’re not all diamonds’. No truer words have ever been spoken.

The world doesn’t need to know you no_mobile_co5just bought a Coke Zero and definitely doesn’t need a picture of it (or any of your days food or beverages for that matter). Keep everyone on their toes… be mysterious!

Seriously though, being glued to facebook and twitter is only going to turn you into a paranoid social media zombie who can’t function in the real world. Live your life for you, you don’t need likes and retweets to be a fulfilled person. Switch your 3G off and go for a walk, have a face-to-face conversation with your gran and read a newspaper! Spending some time disconnected from the internet really clears your head and can get the creativity flowing!

These are just some of the things you can do on a daily basis that do their bit to improve your mental health.

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What do you do when you’re feeling a little down?

Hope you’re all feeling well today!

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Battling Problem Skin: Two Common Problems and Solutions!

Hi guys,

If you’ve kept up with my blogs you’ll have seen me talk about how awful my skin can be; suffering from excess oil and breakouts. Recently I’ve come to a conclusion and faced facts about what is actually causing this and it’s nothing money and excessive product testing is going to solve!

Firstly, I don’t drink enough water. It’s that simple. I drink plenty of diet coke and orange juice but I rarely touch just pure water which terrible for me in many health aspects, never mind my skin.

The solution to this hardly needs pointed out. I need to drink more water!

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This is not a secret, we all know that water benefits the skin so before you pour your money down the drain on a expensive skin care routine.. make sure you’re drinking enough water!

Water aids blood circulation, ensuring all the necessary nutrients and being transported around your body efficiently.

Water also clears out all the toxins in your body that you acquire from eating and drinking things we probably shouldn’t (diet coke, in my case). These toxins will be doing our skin no favours at all!

However, in my case there is one other factor that determines the state of my skin and I think it would even overrule copious amounts of water drinking. Hormones.

Hormones have a massive effect on both male and female skin, especially in teenage/young adult years. If you suffer from bad breakouts or excess oil and are convinced you’re doing all you can to tackle this problem.. you may want to look a little deeper.

Whether you’re in the middle of puberty or have survived that journey, a trip to the doctor in regards to problematic skin and acne may do the trick. Girls can get put on certain contraceptive pills that balance skin aggravating hormones and both boys and girls can get medicated cream or oral tablets that aim to clear the skin.

Contraceptive_PillI’ve been on the contraceptive pill since I was 16 and it’s definitely made a difference to my skin. However, if I ever have a forgetful month and don’t take it regularly or forget to take it and try and over compensate with two in one go (which I wouldn’t recommend for actual contraceptive purposes), my skin freaks out.. and in turn, so do I.. for at least a month!

Being on any form of hormone balancing medication relies heavily on it being taken regularly and like clockwork.. otherwise your hormones will be all over place and that’s going to have awful effects on your skin!

So my number one tip above all else is to take any hormone medication on the dot every day you’re meant to. Set reminders if need be. If you majorly falter on the routine, no amount of water drinking or cleansing is going to save you!

Obviously I’m speaking from a personal perspective but I’m sure I’m not alone with these issues and I don’t think people realise just how much of an effect hormones can have on our skin, so it’s worth looking into if you think this could be the rout of your skin woes!

I hope this has given you some food for thought! Let me know in the comments If you’ve had a similar experience!

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I Believe in Equality Across Genders but I’m Not a Feminist

This is a little different for my blog but it’s serving as a sort of an elaboration and clarification post as I’m aware that sometimes when I speak about feminism (on other platforms and directly to people), I can sound very negative. This isn’t a reaction to feminism, it’s a reaction to the associations and judgements that come with being, and not being, a feminist. So let me elaborate and clarify….

We’re living in a society right now where everyday I hear or see someone mention or discuss or argue over feminism. It’s almost seen as blasphemy for a woman to confidently stand up and say ‘ I am not a feminist’. Does this automatically give anyone the right to draw conclusions about what this self confessed non feminist does believe in? It certainly does not.

I do not call myself a feminist…. and here’s why.

When it comes down to it, feminism is a belief system and a way of thinking and seeing the world. I draw a comparison to religion. Is someone who automatically says ‘I am not a Christian’ a non believer in (a) God? Nope, because there are many variations of religion.

Similarly, just because I say I’m not a feminist that absolutely does not mean I  don’t believe in equality across both genders because I absolutely do. Of course I do! I also believe in absolute equality between different races, religions, sexuality, gender identification, age, mental health.. etc etc etc. Basically… if you are a human you should be treated the same as all other humans.

So why have I opted not to describe myself as a feminist when I clearly believe in (what I understand to be) the basic principle?  Simply, because as a 21st century woman, that is my choice. Nowhere is it written that because you believe this you must identify yourself that… isn’t choice wonderful? Not when people are slated for it, no.

In addition, recently I’ve found that the definition of what feminism means differs massively between what person I speak to or what literature I read (some definitions I agree with, some I don’t) which leaves me completely exhausted trying to educate myself. Therefore, I find no need to attach myself to something that, as far as I can see, is still trying to find its feet in the 21st century. Furthermore, as I said earlier, I believe in equality between EVERYONE… so I don’t want to solely call myself a feminist.. I’d have to wear several other badges as well.

When it comes down to it, I’m firm in what I believe and how I believe people should be treated. I’m not, however, firm on what feminism means.. at the moment. I’m secure and confident and happy to file my beliefs and ways of looking at the world under the simple label of ‘Louise’s beliefs and Ways of Looking at The World’ and no one should have a problem with that.

 My basic message is this:

Snap judgements of anyone who doesn’t call themselves feminists needs to stop, as does snap judgements of people who do call themselves feminists. It works both ways and is ultimately the choice of the individual. As long as woman are in disharmony with themselves how can we expect harmony and equality across genders?

It’s okay to call yourself a feminist.

It’s okay to not call yourself a feminist.

It’s what you believe in that’s important… not how you label yourself.

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*Comments and thoughts are encouraged, however anything offensive will be removed*

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Happy New Year!

Hey everyone!

Just a quick post to wish everyone a happy new year! I hope you all had a lovely time over the festive period!

I’d also like to apologise for my silence over Christmas. Between working, going out and last minute panic shopping. blogging has been the last thing on my mind! But I promise lots is in store for January!

And finally, here’s a snap of one of my favourite make up looks I’ve worn over the past month – let me know what you think!

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DIY: Put Your Old Jars to Good Use!

Hi Guys! Another DIY type post for you today and as promised in yesterdays Vanity Corner post, It’s all about reusing jars.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll have lots of bits and bobs around your house that you just don’t have an easy storage solution for. In which case, I always ask myself if a jar would do the trick.

The great thing about glass jars is they’re subtle and plentiful. You don’t need to go and buy a jar specifically for storage purposes, just have a look in your recycling or save your candle jars!

DSCN0799picedSo starting with what I save from going to the bottle bank: I’ve utilised old sauce jars and a spice jar and put them to good use in my bedroom, holding various beauty products and pennies!

This large jar originally had mayonnaise in it. Once I’d made myself plenty of tuna mayonnaise sandwiches and this jar was empty, I gave it a good wash and sterilise and peeled the label off. Getting rid of the sticky glue that holds the label on wasn’t too much of a problem but takes a bit of elbow grease and a brillo pad!

DSCN0795edThis jar’s mayonnaise days are over and it now sits proudly on my dressing table holding some make-up brushes!

A similar smaller jar, that originally held pasta sauce is now used to contain all my copper change.  I can’t imagine I’m the only person who hates having pennies in their purse or pocket and most people will have some way of storing them so we can eventually have the pleasure of turning them into a fiver at a coin collector machine (..just me??).

DSCN0791edI painted the lid of this jar to try and slightly disguise the fact this used to hold sauce but as you can see it’s flaking away a bit. To avoid this, I should have mixed the paint with some pva glue!

I also recycled a small jar, that was originally a pesto jar, and turned it into a holder for my nail files and clippers etc!

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Another small jar I found an excellent use for was a spice jar with a clicky lid which is perfect for holding my Kirby Grips (bobby pins) and hair bobbles.

DSCN0792edThis is the perfect size for fitting in a handbag and keeps all my hair grips in one place!

Again, all of these jars that had labels on them, I scrubbed the glue off with a brillo pad and some washing up liquid!

Another source of jars is jar candles. I’m candle crazy so I’m slowly collecting a lot of jars from old candles. Candle jars can look very decorative as well as being very handy for storage.

If you remember from my candle recycling post, back at the start of Autumn, I had used up my pumpkin jar candle. To get the remaining wax out of the jar, I left it in the freezer over night and was able to knock the left over wax out a lot easier.DSCN0794ed

After washing the jar I was able to fill it with cotton pads and sit it on my dressing table as a cotton pad/ball dispenser!

Another saved jar from a candle has been filled with little plastic gems and now displays my real techniques brushes!

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You can also create a festive/seasonal display using a transparent jar.

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I hope I’ve given you a few storage and display ideas! Let me know in the comments if you have any DIY storage and display hacks!

Hope you’re all great!

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My Vanity Space and Storage

Hi guys!

So back in my November favourites, I mentioned my dressing table that recently found a new home in my bedroom, having been dying to fulfil it’s potential in the spare room for years.

I am absolutely in love with it and yesterday I pimped it out for Christmas so decided now would be a fantastic time to take a few snaps and let you guys see how I organise and decorate my vanity corner!

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On the surface, obviously have my mirror and to some vanity jars, perfume, candles and photos surrounding it. I’ll give you a little more insight and ideas in my ‘Jars’ blog post tomorrow, about all the uses for old jars I’ve found!

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The table has six drawers. The left hand set of drawers contains skincare and make-up products.

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I’m a big DIY fan (as every student should be) so instead of going out and buying fancy storage boxes, I found unused boxed from around my house, cut them to size and painted them, and then categorised my make up into them! They fit perfectly in the top drawer!

Obviously, as my make-up collection grows, I’m possibly going to have to invest in more substantial storage boxes, but for now these are perfect! In addition, I found a wooden display box which I kept from an old body shop kit and am currently using it to hold pallets!

I’ll fully admit, my skincare drawer is a bit of shambles but it doesn’t stress me out too badly yet! Any suggestions for how I could organise this drawer better, leave me a comment!

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The bottom drawer on the left is simply used to store make up bags and general bits and bobs like my baby shampoo that I use to clean my brushes and my eyebrow tinting kit!

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The right hand drawers are dedicated to hair products and appliances.

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To the left of my Dressing Table, I have another ornamental and vanity surface on the top of my chest of drawers. Here I display my varnishes, with the help of my lovely nail varnish display unit. You can get these from Amazon for around £10!

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So that’s a quick glimpse into my favourite part of my room! Do you have any storage tips?

Look out for my post tomorrow about all of my recycled jar uses!

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