IMG_6579.JPGI have been using Burt‘s Bees since I first discovered it pacing the aisles of Boots quite few years ago. At that point they didn’t have a huge amount of products but I loved the natural smell of their products, particularly their hand balm which I have a huge tin of.

 Since working in the beauty industry I cannot quite believe the use and waste of plastics. Companies don’t seem to have a second thought for the amount of waste they produce, and the sheer size of their carbon footprint. The cheaper, the better is a philosophy that is all too common in the beauty industry. There are exceptions out there, and it is becoming more and more apparent that as the consumer has been demanding more sustainable packaging and sources, the beauty industry has started to have a look at alternative ideas and more resourceful solutions.
Burt‘s Bees has been rocking my world since I first tried their products, and they are seriously dedicated to reducing their carbon footprint, something that is pretty refreshing in the beauty world. They have a zero waste dedication which involves their employees sifting through rubbish to make sure nothing is wasted. Their packaging also uses a minimum of 30% PCR (post-consumer recycled content) and is often able to be recycled again. They are members of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition as well as being certified as Carbon Neutral and return millions of gallons of water to watersheds. Pretty impressive eh? They also gather a lot of their ingredients in sustainable ways, supporting smaller communities and they are pretty transparent on everything they do and admit themselves that there is still a lot to do and have some amiable goals for the future.
They are a pretty great example of a big company that does care about their impact on the environment. A company that listens to its consumers and is trying to make a business without causing a detrimental effect on the environment. I am a big fan of their hand cream and lip balms! Check them out!
On a side note, Burt’s Bees has not paid me in any way to post this. I doubt they know who I am, I just genuinely love the product.
Follow:

FullSizeRender (4)

Badger decided to jump into this shot last minute and I couldn’t resist.

Sometimes I am my very best self. I wake up early, I make smoothies, I get all my work done with a skip in my step and  I even manage to do a bit of exercise (albeit a run around the block before I pass out onto a hedge). I call my mum, I cook dinner from scratch and I am  generally in a “let’s get shit done!” kind of mood.

There are some days though where all I feel like doing is curling up under a duvet with three seasons of  Bob’s Burgers. I don’t feel like talking to anyone and all I want to do is turn off my phone and eat enormous bowls of cheesy pasta in the comforts of my own bed. This is not a hugely regular occurrence but it does happen, and sometimes there is absolutely no reason why. I have struggled with this for years. It’s an antagonising feeling, I enjoy being proactive, I am an ardent worker and generally a pretty active person. Being lazy is not my thing and I usually hate wasting a day or not leaving the house.

In recent years though I have realised that sometimes you’ve just got to listen to your body. It’s okay to just want to curl up with your dog and not answer the phone to anyone for a day. Some of the best minds in history have a regular needed a day off. Virginia Wolf used pretty much have a nervous breakdown every time she submitted a piece of work to her publishers. And you know what? It might not always be a duvet day that helps you recharge your battery. It might be switching off all social media, it might be swimming naked in the sea, wearing pyjamas solidly for the next three days or cleaning the house (not my idea of a day off but one of my good friends swears by it for when she has had a stressful day). I recently read an article in The Pool in which the author would swing an axe at an old tree whenever she was needing to destress. What I am trying to say is do what you need to do make yourself feel better. To make yourself feel a little more you again. Sometimes you need a day under the duvet with a box set of Friends and that is okay.

Let’s be unapologetically a little kinder to ourselves.

Follow:

Ordinary.jpg

I had read a lot of glowing reviews about this brand and after seeing the very low price tag and spotting a small selection of the skincare range in my local Fenwick I picked up the Lactic Acid 10% + HA 2% for around £6. The formula is vegan, cruelty-free and comes in a glass bottle and as you guys know about me already I try  to avoid plastic as much as possible.  have now been using this for three weeks every other night. My mum who is 64 has also been using it because she can’t resist a shiny new bottle sitting on our bathroom shelf so I will include her input too.

IMG_6461

The whole idea of this product is to exfoliate the skin. This product is not recommended for sensitive or peeling skin and the brand warns that your natural SPF may decrease when using this product. I have normal to combination skin that tends to be on the oily side. My mum’s skin is normal to oily.  I applied this in the evening before moisturising (as directed) and found that it certainly made my face feel softer. When I first applied it it my face felt a little sticky and I have to admit that I am not a fan of the chemically smell of this product, but the sticky feeling went away once I had put a moisturiser on top. My mum really enjoyed the product and definitely found that her face felt softer and had more of a glow about it. It has a “dropper” style applicator which looks fancy but isn’t super practical as you end up applying it one handed BUT I am so happy they use glass bottles, you don’t often see this on cheaper products in the beauty industry.

Would I repurchase? I am not sure if I would repurchase this specific product as I have to admit I love to do a good old fashioned exfoliate with some oatmeal or a homemade sugar scrub, but I would definitely get one of their other products and I have my eye on their Rose Hip Seed Oil!

Have you tried their range? Which products? What did you think of the range?

Follow:

Weekends abroad… they’re never as cheap or relaxing as you think.

Trying to find an Air bnb in a different country is tricky enough, let alone after a Ryanair flight when you’ve spent the whole journey with your knees by your ears and your wallet is fifty euros lighter after an air stewardess decided to take a vendetta on you and your hand-luggage which is a mere few cm’s over the limit.

A lot of people dismiss the UK beaches, but it is not only cheaper but also one of the most environmentally friendly ways to have a little break and explore a new part of the country you live in. No flights= half the emissions and you get to explore somewhere for longer as it usually won’t take you as long to get to these places.  I thought I would write about some of my favourite places for a weekend in the UK starting with the emerging hipster hangout, Margate.

I grew up very close to Margate, and I can tell you that ten years ago (oh god that makes me feel old) Margate was a very different place. There was not a huge amount to do for young people, that’s assuming you would even go out in Margate back then (not advised) and I remember spending most of my time in other neighboring towns.

Now with the help of the shiny new Tate gallery and a huge restoration project at Dreamland, the place is a booming little haven for anyone looking to get their toes in the sand but want to avoid the crowds of Brighton. And let’s be honest, the crowds in Brighton on a hot day are something else.

Here are my personal top places to visit when in Margate…

1. The beach- One of the most obvious ones, but it really is a giant, sandy dream of a beach. In the 18th Century the wealthy would come to bathe in saltwater to improve their health. I can’t promise the health benefits of the water in this Kentish town, but getting into chilly water is still used as an alternative treatment to depression due to the amount of endorphin’s that are released. Top Tip- Make sure you have an Oyster at the little seafood shack near the Tate!

2. The Tate– Even if you aren’t a big art fan it is still worth a visit. Margate has a very rich history in art (Tracey Emin and JMW Turner both lived here) and most exhibitions are free. Top tip- Make sure you go into the lift- it’s beautiful!

3. Dreamland! This place has had a complete makeover and is now full of food vans, music and incredible rides. Keep your eye out for upcoming gigs in this area!

FullSizeRender.jpg

4. Go shopping! A few of my favourite places are The Old Ken Market with the UK’s smallest pub and be sure to visit Peony Vintage and Ruskin  which are fantastic little vintage shops full of secondhand clothing!

5. Eat! If you’re a bit of a foodie like me there a quite a few emerging food havens there. Unfortunately, a lot of them are’nt cheap but hopefully this will settle down soon. If you are staying for the weekend I would recommend getting an Airbnb to save some cash on breaky or lunch but I very much enjoyed The Greedy Cow, The Grain Grocer  and Peter’s Fish Factory for fish &chips. We went to The Great British Pizza Company which personally I would’nt recommend as I found the pizza bases to thin and the pizza on the whole really was’nt very big or filling but that might be right up your street, plus I have an insatiable appetite.

If any of you make it there let me know, I would love to show you round! Where is your favourite UK getaway?

I hope you enjoy Margate as much as we did!

 

Follow:

Our generation lives in a consumer society that is pretty different to our parents.

This is certainly not a bad thing, we finally have clothes designed to suit all shapes and sizes, there’s thousands of brands to choose from, all competing in prices (goodbye monotonous trip down to Clark’s to buy ugly but sensible shoes,right?). If you are savvy enough and hit the sales at the right time you can get a whole new outfit for less than £20! What’s the problem? Well, it’s that because of this ease and convenience of buying new things we seem to be stuck in a bit of a throwaway culture, particularly within the field of clothing. Over 1 million tonnes of clothing and other textiles is thrown away in the UK each year. If this was compressed it would be as wide as Canary Wharf and 3 times taller.

IMG_3003

I am not judging. I used to have  serious problem with buying clothes, especially when I was younger. I would march off down to the high street clutching the latest installment of my student loan and come home with bags full of H&M goodies for a party that night. Why buy one good top when you can buy five cheap tops?

In recent years I have had a serious cull on my spending,it has not been easy. Marketing pop-ups follow you around the internet, we get notified about sales and fashion is something that is constantly and rapidly changing and it can feel pretty tricky to keep up. There is also a delight in buying new things, a little treat to ourselves.
Well I thought I would share a few of my top tips on how I shop smart alongside some pictures of one of my favourite pieces from Toast  that has lasted me throughout the seasons :
IMG_3001
1. Origins –   Look at the material and where the product was created. (Is this the sort of material that will last or shrink/ discolour after a few washes? What are the ethics of this brand? Spending a little more to get good quality and a good cut will go a long way.
2. Will the style last? Can you imagine yourself wearing this in a years time? I have definitely panicked before and ending up buying something for one formal occasion.  Investing more in less pieces will save you so much money (and textile wastage) in the long run.
3. Is it comfortable? Don’t buy the shoes that look great but make your feet hurt after half an hour of walking around in them, and DO NOT  buy anything in the hope of loosing weight to fit into it. We’ve all been there.
4. Do you really really need it? It sounds stupid but check your wardrobe first. I have been surprised by things that have been stuck right at the back of my wardrobe that have come back into fashion- dig deep!
5. Don’t  impulse buy-  If I really like something, I tend to leave it a few days and if I can’t stop thinking about I will then buy it.
I hope these tips have helped- how do you try to dissuade yourself from buying too much and improving on your smart shopping?
IMG_2997
Follow: