January Sales shopping tips you need!

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The January sales, Does anyone else get a slight tingle of excitement at the thought of the reductions on nice things?

The funny thing about Christmas is that we spend an absolute fortune all for one day! to then rush out the next day to a week, to spend even more money on things that we probably do not need! We just love a good old bargain! Am I right?

January sales
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So let’s talk January sale tips you need to know!

Pre Christmas tip – You need to know!

Shops often mark the items with a random letter and number that they are planning to place in the January sales. These will normally be written on the item label, something like ‘S16’, Often in biro. Avoid paying out on these if it is something you’d rather purchase cheaper in the sales.

Only spend what you can afford.

Look, Let’s get real for a minute. How many times have you spent out in the January sales, and left yourself out of pocket for the whole of January? ending up as feeling the longest month, days feel like weeks and weeks just feel like there never gonna end!

Save yourself some of the pain and give yourself a budget when heading out to the sales.

Stick to your budget & avoid the credit card!

It might be on sale, and it might be a really awesome addition to the wardrobe. Now is the time more than ever to stop making purchases outside of your means.

Avoid using the credit card! Maxing out your card, not only puts you in a worse financial situation, it can prevent you from a decent credit score in the future. Meaning financial back up when it is really needed may not become available to you.

Ask yourself, Do you really need it?

Is it that you really need that new top, or do you just like the price of it? You should only be spending your money on things that you genuinely like, need and know that you are going to be able to get plenty of use of! It is so easy to get embraced in the price of something when you’ve headed sale shopping.

Plan ahead, Where are you going?

Sale shopping is serious business. Crowds of shoppers, all doing the same rummaging that you are, trying to look for the best bargains to take home. A lot of the time not having a clue what it is they are looking for.

And. Going shopping for the day in main town centres are the most hectic places to be. Especially before the new year hits, whilst everyone is still off work. Thousands of people all having the same idea of getting some Bargains in, and making a day out of it.

List the things you genuinely need so that you can shop with purpose.

There is no harm in heading into the sales with a plan of stuff you need to find! It is a perfect time to buy things that you have needed for a while but has not been able to afford because money always tight (That definitely includes us).

Avoid shopping in the usual places!

If you think about it, why would you buy from the places that you usually by from! Check out the places you would usually say are more expensive! If there are specific shops that you love! but don’t often by from, these are the shops you are gonna want to be in!

Do a price check!

Especially when it comes to the more expensive items that you’re considering on spending out on, it is so worth doing a price check. I do like to check Amazon.

And finally, remember this. The January sales are not your only chance of getting a bargain.

The January sales are every year alongside so many more sales that happen throughout the year! if you can not afford it, you might be able to afford it later.

Most retailers, hold numerous sales throughout the year, as they want to encourage sales to maintain their business! No need to get in a stress when you do not need to be!

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Christmas Gift Ideas for Him under £50.

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Christmas gift ideas for him

Buying Christmas gifts for the opposite sex can be a challenge at the best of times, especially when it’s the general family gifts and there are only a few men to buy for. You know them, but you don’t know where to start when it comes to buying for them. I thought with Blogmas going well this year it was about time I shared some gift guides to help you guys get through the chaos that is Christmas shopping. So in today’s post, I am sharing some pretty awesome Christmas gift ideas for him, to make the stressful Christmas shopping a little less stressful.

Christmas gift ideas for him to get your hands on…

Beautiful fleece-lined gloves by Salt & Hyde.

These beautiful fleece-lined gloves make a smart winter warmer for them. They are beautifully designed. You can check out these gloves and many more beautiful products from Trendhim.

1. Parker Jotter London Trio Discovery Pack

I’m not gonna lie, I do think of pens when I think of gifts for the men in our family. My dad lives in a house full of pens, but if you think he can find his own for one minute, you have another thing coming.

Parker is a beautiful brand of pens, and this set is such a reasonable price to bring joy to a loved one.

2. Bedside Pocket

Keeping there stuff all together instead of floating around the bedroom, this cute little organiser is so handy for shoving the TV remote, and their book and what ever it is they need besides them.

This would be the perfect present for anyone who loves a day in bed!

3. Baylis & Harding The Fuzzy Duck Men’s Ginger & Lime Beard Tin Giftset

Baylis & Harding is such a sweet and popular brand of self-care/beauty products. The Ginger & Lime set smells divine, and is such a reasonable price to gift for Christmas to an uncle or cousin!

Christmas gift ideas for him
Pin me 🙂

4. Things I Hate Programmer Gamer Gift T-Shirt

This T-shirt really speaks out to me, novelty t-shirts based on their personality make a brilliant gift for your loved ones!

I mean besides the fact that who doesn’t relate to hating a crap wifi/battery or a loading sign that doesn’t load. Novelty t-shirts are something we all have a secret love for! Amazon is the perfect place to get something that is personalised to them.

5. Handmade Nose-Shaped Eyeglass Spectacle Holder

If they wear glasses then this is the perfect bedside gift for them. This holder gives them a safe space to leave their glasses at the end of the day, and it looks pretty trendy too. I am constantly taking my glasses off and loosing them by the morning because I have no idea where they have got too. So basing my own experiences this would be the perfect present for anyone who wheres glasses daily!

6. Anker SoundCore 2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Everyone loves a bit of music! These portable Bluetooth speakers are perfect for bringing the music to the memories!

Portable bluetooth speakers are so handy! Easy to shove in the bottom of the bag for when you don’t know that you are going to need them! it doesn’t take very long to charge and isn’t a bad looking speaker!

7. Beard grooming kit

If they have a beard, what could be better than a beard/self-care kit for them? This one contains cute scissors in the shape of a bird! would they be bothered by this? maybe, maybe not, but as it goes for reasonable gift ideas for him, this is a pretty handy one!

8. 2021 Pocket diary

Anyone else has a man in their life that has the inability to stay organised? Getting them a planner is the perfect organisational hint that you could give! A smart, plain planner will be perfect for him!

9. Don’t forget a lynx set!

To be honest you do not need to be a him to expect a Lynx set in your stocking this year! Its pretty much a Christmas right of passage.

So thats it from me when it comes to ‘useful gift ideas for him’. If you have any other suggestions of what would make some perfect Christmas gift ideas for him that drop me a comment below! I can’t wait to surprise our loved ones with the things that are coming there way this year! but I am always on the hunt for some more ideas for things that could put a smile on there face…

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Why is it important to keep a balanced diet?

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bowl of vegetable salad and fruits
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When it comes to keeping a balanced diet I know for a fact, that I am always looking to improve. There is a massive difference between dieting, and keeping a healthy lifestyle. Which seems to be a common thing that people forget quite regularly. I often see people attempting FAD diets. I’ve tried so many of them myself.
The truth is the only real way to conquer your eating habits and health worries is to change the way your thinking about food.

What is a balanced diet?

Having a balanced diet means that we eat the right things. Whilst controlling the quantity of the things we eat that aren’t really so good for us.

To have a balanced diet is another way of saying to maintain a healthy diet or a healthy lifestyle. A diet which contains a variety of foods in the correct quantities and proportions as well as ensuring that your body is receiving an adequate amount of nutrients that we need to survive in life.

It does not have to be complicated, honestly and don’t forget that it is never too late or too early to make healthy changes to your diet to help prevent disease, manage your weight, and feel generally better.

What is included in the best diet?

A balanced diet means making the correct choices to eat the correct varieties of foods from the different food groups.

This should specifically include things such as:

  • vegetables and fruits
  • protein – Such as meat, fish, eggs, beans and soy.
  • dairy – Such as low-fat milk, cheese and yoghurt.
  • carbohydrates – Such as starchy foods like rice, pasta, potatoes and bread (wholegrain or wholewheat varieties would be better for you)
  • A small number of healthy fats such as the unsaturated fat from things like olive oil.

Why is a balanced diet so important for us?

Control Body weight

It goes without saying that a healthy lifestyle and a balanced diet help control our body weight. Alongside as keeping active where possible.

Fight disease

Keeping our diet balanced also ensures that our bodies are getting the right amount of vitamins and minerals into our system. Think of our bodies like a flower. To keep that flower glowing and beautiful, you need to provide the correct lighting and keep them hydrated. We are completely no different.

More energy and better mood.

By maintaining a balanced diet you will notice that your mood will improve and you have more energy than normal. It’s all of them vitamins and minerals that do you so good. A friend said something to me that really makes sense. Food is your mood. Eating crap will not make you feel any better basically.

Better sleep

So as I have just mentioned, maintaining a healthy diet improves your energy, however, Did you know that keeping a balanced diet improves your sleep? And can improve the content of our dreams.

Brain power

Not getting the correct amount of nutrients in your body effects us being able to think straight! How can you stay productive when your body is crying out for a detox?

What should I be avoiding in my diet?

  • Highly processed food & drinks
  • Added sugar & salt
  • Red or processed meat
  • Alcohol
  • Trans fats.

One simple and relatively easy way of decreasing the amount of crap we are putting into our bodies is simply reducing the amount of sugar and salt that we input into our bodies, we can do this by avoiding sugary drinks and foods, and foods with added saturated fat like processed meats, chips, pastries, and pies.

balanced diet
Photo by Trang Doan on Pexels.com

Tips for achieving a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.

Take multivitamins.

Life gets super busy at times. I know for certain that sometimes it is so difficult to stick to our routines and plans. For example, nights where we probably should have cooked the meal that we had planned to make, however, it hasn’t gone to plan and we’ve ended up with a take out. When life gets like this for me I always find that ensuring that I take multivitamins in the morning, it helps me feel brighter and more productive throughout the entire day.

Plan your meals & get creative with your meal planning.

There our plenty of healthy recipes and food ideas from all over the show on the web. Pinterest is a brilliant way to inspire a healthy meal.
also using a planner and sitting down and organising your meals before shopping day is ready way to keep yourself on track and probably save you some money!

Aim to get your 5 a day.

As the NHS recommends. You should be eating 5 portions of fruit or vegetables a day. It really is so easy to do as well. I love mixing fruit and healthy products to make a homemade smoothie! They taste amazing and our so nutritious for you!

Eat more fish.

Fish contains huge amounts of protein as well as omega 3 so not only is it good for your body! It’s amazing for your brain too.

If you really don’t like fish. This one will be challenging for you. However, increasing the amount of fish into your diet is really for you.

Hydrate, always.

Drink plenty of water to keep hydrated and to help your body function better. Your body literally needs water and hydration to survive. I always find that volvic water, the flavoured versions

Stay active.

Get your body moving and your heart racing when ever you can! I use a Fitbit! To count my steps and monitor how active I have been! Most phones have a stepomoter on them. I find that using these helps you create your own challenges to beat.

Don’t skip breakfast.

you’ve probably heard this one a million times before. I know that I am the worst for this but it is something that I am genuinely trying to get into routine of doing. Having a healthy breakfast not only sets you up for the adventures of the day it also regulates your metabolism so that you are able to loose weight.

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Using CBD for its benefits for Skincare.

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So as you probably already know that CBD has been a hot topic for self-care and wellness for quite a while now! with CBD having so many benefits to your physical health and mental wellbeing, (for example, Anxiety) however, that is not all. Did you know that by using CBD for skincare can be a complete game-changer for your beauty regime?

CBD, AKA, cannabidiol comes from the cannabis plant. Yep, the one that has been famously known for the Marijuana drug. However CBD may have been extracted from the hemp plant, it does not contain the element THC which is the part of the plant that gets you high.

Hemp has also been used in beauty products for a long time now but is not the same thing. So you when purchasing you will need to check the ingredients for CBD or cannabidiol.

skincare
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Really? Using CBD for skin benefits?

Especially over the past few months, I have noticed more and more beauty care products being released containing CBD, such as hair conditioners, toothpaste and body lotions.

So is CBD trend actually beneficial for your skin? and should you be adding some CBD products to your own skincare routine?

Well, even though the full benefits and effects of CBD are still being investigated there is significant indications that CBD is good for you and your body overall!

What does CBD mean for our skin benefits?

Since there has been a rather large selection of the population raving about CBD for skincare we know a few conditions where CBD is due to its anti-inflammatory properties and ability to deal with a variety of skincare complaints.

Such as the following…

Dry Skin

Dry skin is something that affects most of us at times, especially when we are in the colder months of the year. Personally, this is something that I struggle with, And I have certainly noticed a positive effect by using varies CBD skincare products.

For years I have been suffering from dry skin around my elbows in particularly. I do recommend CBD intensive cream by Holland & Barrett, As this has been a favourite product of mine for a while now.

By using CBD products regularly in your regime, your skin will heal over time as it is great for moisturising and giving you a glowing complexion.

Acne

Firstly, let us cross out the myth that only teenagers get acne. That isn’t true at all. I am someone who can definitely raise my hand as an acne sufferer, especially when it comes to my PCOS. Anyone can suffer with Acne, and there age is not a factor of this.

Acne has the ability to leave your skin looking inflamed and this can feel quite sore. By introducing a face wash that contains the CBD element can improve the issues that Acne is causing you. The anti-inflammatory properties in CBD work by soothing your skin and reducing acne pressure.

Tip: If you are using a face wash and this is helping but not enough, then using a CBD based facial moisturiser alongside your facewash, can reduce symptoms even more then the face wash alone.
skincare
Photo by RF._.studio on Pexels.com

Anti-ageing

Wouldnt it be wonderful if we just didn’t age at all? I suppose that is like saying we want to live forever though, and we cannot live in denial and we are all going to age, sooner or later.

However just because we are naturally ageing does not mean we cant aid our skin into looking fresher. Using CBD based products to reduce the effects of ageing is possible, Such as Using serums directly on the skin, lotions or oil tinctures (These are the ones designed for use under your tongue).

Eczema and psoriasis conditions

It is not just Acne that the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD are helpful for. CBD lotions, act as a soothing balm and are capable of being able to soothe the itching and irritation that has been caused by skin conditions such as eczema or psoriasis. Using CBD seems to be able to slow down skin cell division in order to reduce these symptoms of these common skin irritations.

So to summarise, we love CBD for skincare because…

  • It has anti-ageing elements to its use.
  • Can be used to treat psoriasis and Eczema.
  • It is rich in Omega 6 & 9.
  • Contains powerful antioxidants.
  • Improve and nourish dry skin.
  • Can prevent and decrease acne.
  • Helps boost the immune system.

What to bear in mind when picking CBD products…

CBD is completely legal, this is because it does not contain the THC element. Which means it is easily purchasable and you will be able to find reputable sellers.

I would always suggest the companies such as the previously mentioned, Holland and Barrett when it comes to buying CBD for skincare and wellbeing. I would highly recommend only purchasing from sellers that you are familiar with and trust. Especially so you can ensure that the product you are buying is of good quality and has the correct amount of CBD in them.

Fact: Although CBD products are legal, you will probably find that some stores have set an 18+ age limit on their CBD products.

What are your thoughts on using CBD in your skincare routine?

I would love to hear from you with your thoughts on using CBD based products in your skincare routine? Are there any products that you have used and recommended? Let me know in the comments below what your favourites are.

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Toxic habits that are stopping you from being happy.

Happy Sunday! It has been a few days since my last post! Life has been so hectic the last few weeks, and mental health has been on my mind a lot recently. With Saturday being world mental health day, I thought I would share some of the toxic habits that I have been giving up so that I can improve my own happiness.

So many times in life we are making our own obstacles that prevent us from being able to reach the level of happiness we deserve. These obstacles become habits, and they are toxic for our growth and wellbeing. Not all of them are obvious admittedly.

Making excuses.

Have you ever made excuses not to do something but really it was something that would have benefited yourself in some way. Therefore stopping you from progressing further in your life. I know I have. However, I admit that I regretted doing this so many times.

Saying yes when you really want to say no.

Simply put as stop agreeing to do things that you don’t want to do!

How many times have you been put in a position where you’ve had to do something because you could find a way of saying no.

Realising your ability to be able to say no is a massive window.

Toxic habits

Trying to make everyone happy.

I struggle with this one at times too. In a perfect world, everyone would be happy all the time. I would personally love to keep everyone happy when it comes to life. Wedding planning has been a massive example, due to postponing due to the coronavirus and having to make adaptions so that we can actually get married, I soon realised we can not keep everyone happy. It’s actually impossible there will always be someone that will feel annoyed and let down by your decisions. It is honestly remembering your own happiness and making sure your looking after your wellbeing before trying to keep everyone else happy.

Not making your health a priority.

I admit. I have learnt this the hard way. Even now I have to remind myself to stop and slow down at times. Your body often gives you warning signs before you become poorly.

By Ignoring the warning signs and not taking care of myself. And I am still stubborn when it comes to needing to see a doctor.

I used to panic at the idea of missing commitments because of my health. It was making me stressed and worse health-wise. Learning to put yourself first. Thinking of your health as one of your priorities is one of the most important things you can do. You only get one body! Look after it.

Surrounding yourself with toxic people.

Toxic people can become a toxic habit as you repeatedly allow yourself to allow other peoples behaviour to control your actions and mind. Your damaging your own self-happiness by allowing people around you to act in a way acting that brings you down.

You don’t need that in your life. Your beautiful and you have your own unique and lovely personality that the world needs to see! Don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself and stop accepting negative and rude behaviour.

Settling easily.

Who says you need to settle when there is a whole big world out there! Waiting for you to experience and live through new opportunities.
stop settling and work towards your dreams.

Mindless scrolling.

who else can admit they continuously do this toxic habit?

Now I am not saying that I am completely innocent when it comes to this. I’m constantly on my phone however I honestly would say it’s mindless scrolling and not phone usage that is a problem. Spending hours on your phone just scrolling through newsfeeds is doing a solo nothing for your positivity and mental wellbeing.

If anything spending too long scrolling the feeds on your phone is stopping you from being productive and living your life.

Doubting yourself.

It’s so easy to do, doubting yourself. Not being able to trust your gut instincts. But the honest answer is that you know. You know the right choices you should be making. You have the strength and ability to what what ever you put your mind to.

You just need to believe in yourself.

Depending on others.

When you spend too long depending on others you are not helping your own personal growth.
Work towards being able to support yourselves. Even if this is something that takes you longer than someone else. The happiness you grow from the feeling of succeeding in the end is the best.

Living in the past.

The past is a demon that every single human being is. I’m specifically taking about the regrets that we have and the failures we have made. It’s time to forget the negative times and start living the future. Ensuring that we learn from our experiences but we’ve moved on from them.

Comparing yourself to others.

Caring what others think.

It’s so hard at times to not care what other people think of you. But it gets to the point that we’re so worried about what others think of us that we forget what really matters. Our own happiness and the ability to enjoy life. We only get one life. Don’t waste it worrying about what others are thinking of you. Cause the chances are that they haven’t noticed your mistake, or even care if you like something that they don’t.

Not looking after your finances.

Money really is the route of all evil at times. We are driven by earning/gaining money, but were also depressed by not being able to afford what we want, having debts and always having a minus bank balance. It sucks doesn’t it?
I would suggest to anyone that they should look after their financial health from as early as they can. As money can have an awful impact on mental health.

Being sleep deprived.

I have to admit it, because I am totally rubbish at sticking to a ‘normal’ and reasonable bed time, but being sleep deprived, and not having a sleep routine is one toxic habit that is damaging your happiness behind the scenes. Although it is something I’m trying to work on.

Not getting enough sleep can cause you to be unable to concentrate fully. Lafargic and unmotivated. Which means your find yourself not able to function as well.

what are some toxic habits you would like to stop to improve your wellbeing and positive energy? Comment below what it is.

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Polycystic Ovaries: What it really means to live with PCOS.

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Having polycystic ovaries is known as having a condition called PCOS. This condition affects how a women’s ovaries work. despite the name, you do not actually have cysts if you have PCOS. There are 3 main elements that indicate the diagnosis of PCOS.

  • Irregular periods meaning your ovaries do not regularly release eggs AKA ovulation.
  • excess androgen – a higher than expected level of “male” hormones. which may cause physical signs such as excess facial or body hair
  • polycystic ovaries – your ovaries become enlarged and contain many fluid-filled sacs (follicles) that surround the eggs.

If you have at least 2 of these features, you may be diagnosed with PCOS.

woman curled up on floor
Photo by Polina Zimmerman on Pexels.com

Polycystic ovaries & me

From the minute I hit my puberty years I had problems. Severe cramps, heavy periods, emotionally drained and tearful constantly.

Endless trips to the Drs to talk about my crippling periods. They tried me on the contraceptive pill at first. Which honestly had zero effect. After a few times of being asked to give it a little longer to work, I was finally sent for a scan.

I was referred for an internal ultrasound which was how it was discovered that I had polycystic ovaries. For a while, I continued to get on with it, and manage the cramps and feeling shit. however, it has got worse over the years.

I have been visiting the gynaecology department at Southampton Hospital for nearly 5 years now. I’ve had countless investigations and treatments.
For a while, they thought I had endometriosis due to the amount of pain I was having alongside the troubles I was having. However, I don’t have that. They discovered issues with cysts blocking my tubes instead.

I have basically bad PCOS, with other things going on along side them. So when it comes to the issues Polycystic ovaries brings, I am sadly very experienced.

Unpredictable/heavy periods.

Pcos is one of the most commonly associated symptom of having unpredictable and heavy periods.
heavy periods tend to mean that we end up needing to use twice as much sanitary supplies as the expected period would.

As for our periods been unpredictable. I have had periods that last up to two weeks, as well as periods that come back every 2 – 3 weeks.

Experiencing chronic pain is a daily occurrence for me. In this post, I discuss how pain has an effect on my mental health, here.

horrendous cramps

I remember how many times people have said ‘Oh it’s just a period, man up’. As I grew up when I complained about the painfulness of my cramps. However, they continued to get worse the older I Got. Pain that will literally stop me from being able to walk, having me curled up in pain.

If you are going through this you really need to keep your doctor informed. They can refer you for help through gynaecology.

polycystic ovaries hot water bottle
Hot water bottles are literally my best friends.

The unwanted hair growth.

the unwanted hormones that we lucky people managed to get extra of allows are body to do the most distracting things. Even down to giving us dark facial hair that is hard to get rid off.
we spend ages plucking at our chins etc just to ensure we don’t look like we are growing a beard.
Fighting the temptation to grab a razor and shave it off because we know this will make it a worse.

Struggling with body weight.

One of the most annoying symptoms of having PCOS is definitely the struggle of loosing weight, and maintaining a low weight.

our polycystic hormones cause our insulin resistance to go haywire meaning we are at a greater risk on having type 2 diabetes.

Self-care has a positive impact when you are struggling with health, read more, here.

polycystic ovaries
Img src: google

oily skin? acne? Dry skin? or all of the above.

I always know that I am about to come on when I start breaking out with loads of spots and lumps that appear. Especially all over my face. In fact, it isn’t just my face, it tends to be the whole of me. I suffer from cysts everywhere, which the doctor isn’t worried about because it’s just part of the PCOS joyful effects.

It’s taken me years to find products that Work for me, and it is genuinely about trial and error.

Getting the right support, medically, if you believe you may have Polycystic ovaries.

If you have not been diagnosed with PCOS. If you can relate to these symptoms. Keep a diary of when and what your symptoms are. You can take to a GP/Specialist to get the right help and support.

A doctor will be able to refer you to the correct departments for testing. Such as having a blood test, and an internal ultrasound.

There are, however, plenty of places to gain knowledge and support when it comes to PCOS, and the worry of endometriosis. Including Facebook groups.

Helpful tips:

  • Keeping to a healthy lifestyle including exercising regularly, eating fewer carbs.
  • Taking feminine targeted pain relief such as Feminax
  • using a hot water bottle to help ease cramps.
  • investing in a heated blanket is a brilliant way of coping with painful cramps.
  • Wear Cura heat pads, direct to skin to help you carry on with your day.
  • Trying a moon cup. It may not be for everyone, however for the sake of saving money on supplies as well as being a sustainable product. These are pretty amazing concepts.
  • Avoid shaving facial areas where possible, as this causes hair growth to come back darker, and thicker.
  • Don’t skip breakfast – Our bodies need food to function and eating small portions regularly can support this!
  • Using cleansing toner Such as the one by Simple, for skin issues.
  • moisturise regularly with a lotion that is suited to your skin type.
  • Staying hydrated.

If you ever need someone to talk to about PCOS symptoms and relief. Pop me a message to one of my socials or my email, thealexajadeblog@gmail.com

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What are the benefits of wearing a face mask for the ‘new normal’

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Can you believe how this year had literally been flying by considering 2020 has been a year of worldwide madness, to put it nicely? and of course, the hottest topic of 2020 has been the Coronavirus and the global pandemic that the coronavirus has caused. From being in complete lockdown to only being allowed to enter a shop wearing a face covering. So how appropriate to be talking about the benefits of wearing a face mask! since we all have to do it right now.

Today I am partnering with bitmore.co.uk and their Armor London beautifully designed face mask coverings. There are so many benefits of wearing a face covering. Especially since it is part of the ‘new normal’ life that we are all experiencing right now.

 benefits of wearing a face mask

I thought that this would be a brilliant chance to review something that is highly spoken about as well as argued about right now.

So, What did I think of the masks?

As we headed out for a morning at the arcades, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to test the masks out properly. So I can assure you guys that before writing this post, I have tested the Armor London masks fully.

Honestly, I have been so impressed with these masks that I have been sent, the material is so comfortable. The camafolague pink mask is a cotton material that feels quite soft and really didn’t feel too heavy or restricting.

My favourite mask is the Dusky pink colour made from hemp materials. This mask is again ever so breathable. It didn’t irritate my face at all, and I even forgot it was there after a while.

The fit feels snug to the face but ever so breathable. It is actually the only mask that I have had so far that I haven’t had anxiety with halfway around a store. Which is a massive thing for me, and is really helping my confidence when it comes to face mask-wearing.

The masks are brilliant colours, with quite a beautiful range of colours and styles, as well as a range for children.

face mask

What are the benefits of wearing a face mask?

Some of the major questions on everybody’s lips are what are the benefits of wearing a facemask. Should they really be wearing one and where?

There are many benefits of wearing a face mask. The reasons for wearing them are for our own benefit as well as other people. Although the face mask may not fully beneficial to the person wearing the mask, there is some protection as well as being a requirement to wear to ensure the safety of others.

Wearing a mask helps protect you and others from contracting germs.

The main reason behind wearing a face covering is to prevent the spread of the tiny particles that come from your mouth and nose whilst out and about in the community. Although a face mask alone has not been proven to be completely affective, alongside other methods a facemark is said to be the most effective method of prevention.

You may not realise that you are contagious.

If you were to contract the coronavirus, you may not realise that you have been affected for up to 2 weeks, before you begin to show symptoms. So imagine if you were positive for the Coronavirus and didn’t realise, for 2 weeks you then see 10 people, they then see 10 other people, and that happened every day for the 2 weeks that you do not realise you are contagious to others. The world would be heading back to lockdown again. Not that the world has fully recovered in the first place.

Face masks help the economy recover.

With everything that has happened this year, the business world has taken a really big hit. The idea of protecting the community and supporting the return to business as well as education, so that we are not suffering in the future to come.

There is very little alternative to face coverings.

Wether we like it or not, there are very little alternatives to wearing a face covering, and being vigilant when it comes to social distancing. Although there are many debates about the benefits of wearing a face mask, and if they are actually useful or not. There is no cure/vaccination to beat the covid-19 virus.

benefits of wearing a face mask

What else can you do to prevent spreading or contracting the virus?

Washing your hands frequently.

Good old soap and water, you cant beat it. Washing your hands regularly, especially having touched items from outside of your house setting with soap and water kills bacteria that lingers on your hands. You should wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, ensuring your rub in-between all of your fingers and above your wrist.

Use anti bacterial gel.

The use of hand sanitiser gel is a way of cleansing your hands as much as possible if you are in a situation where you are unable to use soap and water. It is highly recommended that as soon as you return to a setting where you are able to wash your hands, you do so.

Continue to adhere to social distancing measures.

However much the lockdown regulations have eased, we are not back to how life was in the slightest. Instead, life is turning to the ‘new normal’ (not that we are sure what exactly normal is yet!). The virus still exists and we should be remaining to stay vigilant as the virus is still catchable. You can do this by trying to stay at least 2 metres away from anyone you do not live with or anyone who is not in your support bubble. Although it may feel like at times that some have started to get bored of the mention of COVID, this should not stop you from ensuring your safety.

Catch it and bin it!

I personally feel like this is quite an obvious thing to say! but yanno… No matter where you are if you feel the need to cough or sneeze you should ensure that you are covering your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands). Single-use tissues are the safest, as you are able to bin these immediately and wash your hands after.

benefits of wearing a face mask

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A plus sized girl guide to surviving the heat and the rest of the summer!

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It’s hot isn’t it? So hot right now. I’m not complaining, but I am suffering. One thing I can say about a heatwave is it’s not cool! (I just couldn’t resist that crappy little joke). As a plus size girl, I’m feeling for all my curvy friends right now! The muggy weather is the worst. Whilst we’re hoping for thunder storms to come our way and clear the air, I thought it would be a nice idea to share my tips for surviving the heat.

Isn’t it funny how it’s harder to cool down then warm up? Well, annoying. I do love the summer though, seeing past the heat. Summer is for colourful clothes and making memories, just like last year we’ve been doing as much as we can, whilst following social distancing.

Surviving the heat

How I’ve been surviving the heat…

Fans are your friend!

I’m not going to lie. Surviving this heat had been a nightmare when it comes to bedtime. We’ve had 3 fans on in our room the past few nights. however, It has Still been so hard to sleep with this heat. Having a fan aimed at us has really helped us out.

Small tip: Placing a bowl of water under the fan also helps cool the room. As the water evaporates the fan cools this into the air.

Staying in? Keep your mind off the sun with staying creative at home! Read the post, here.

Embrace your body! And get that bikini on.

The idea of going somewhere where everyone could see my fatty legs used to kill me off. I wouldn’t want to go. It’s only recently that I have grown my confidence by having an attitude of if you don’t like it don’t look attitude. Plus who is really looking at you? Everyone else is too busy in there own bubbles.

So grab that swim wear and get down to the beach. Dive in the sea and cool off!

Ice lollies are the best supply.

When it’s a sunny hot day what’s better then a freezing cold treat? An ice cream might be tempting but I promise you your feel even more refreshed with a fruity ice lolly!

Drink even more water.

I’m not being funny with this one. But if your like me right now your going to be constantly sweating. You need to keep hydrated even more so right now. Topping up on water during the day and night will help prevent headaches and feeling crappy.
keeping hydrated is so much better for you and will help keep you cool. As well. It also helps reduce the redness in our hot faces.

Surviving the heat at the beach
Beach Day ☀️

Invest in a decent fly trap.

With heat comes the flies! Ugh there so annoying. There everywhere in the heat. They thrive when it’s hot. Having a decent fly trap will really help. We recently brought this one. It’s brilliant. Really has reduced the flies around us.

Don’t forget your sun cream.

Your already hot and sweaty. Let’s not add burn to this too. I’ve been suffering the last week with sunburn. Because even though I use sun cream I still burn. I use Nivea sun for kids, Which is one of my favourite sun lotions as this always seems to work best for my sensitive sun hating skin. I would still advice applying every hour that your in direct sunlight.

And if you do burn…

After sun and moisturiser! Alternate the 2 every few hours. Your skin will thank you for this! I did learn this week, out of all of the aftersuns I have used in the past. Aloe Vera gel is the best for severe sun burn. I’ve been keep this in the fridge since I got burnt and it really helps the soothing.

Surviving the heat dog with ice lolly
Bella enjoyed her ice cream 🍦

Make sure your clothes and comfortable and loose.

When you are not living in your bikini. Loose and flowing clothes are the best thing for us in this heat. It’s bad enough sweating in everything you put on. So if you have something thin and loose, it’s time to get it out.

Also. Sports bras, I love them in this heat, more comfortable and you can get away with wearing it alone.

Find the water…

I know the idea of the beach right now is out of the question for most, and if we do go. We need to be vigilant with social distancing, but it’s not just the beach as an option to cool down. Some parks have lakes where you can paddle, and there are some beaches around the coast (for us in Hampshire. We are quite lucky to have so many local options). Surviving the heat is so much nicer when you can take a dip in some water.

If a beach isn’t an option, a garden paddling pool, even the smallest to out your feet in will help you cool down quicker.

An umbrella in the sun.

Taking an umbrella with you out when you know. There won’t be much shade helps protect your skin from the sun. (Honestly no one wants the sweaty sunburnt feeling).

Stay calm! It’s not for long…

As plus sized we might struggle a bit more. But it isn’t for long! That boob sweat isn’t going to kill you, promise. Try and keep calm and relaxed. A proper heatwave is not something you want to fight against. When surviving the heat, no one has the energy for that in the heat anyway!

Enjoy your summer as much as you can even when keeping safe from coronavirus and socially distancing, make sure you wash your hands frequently when going out, and wear a face covering!

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Experiencing corrective leg surgery

Hey and a very good morning to you all. Today I want to tell you about an experience that has had a massive impact on my life. Sometimes In life, you end up doing things that you know deep down are just not what you wanna do. There are things that we do in life that we feel like we have no choice but to do them. Even when these are all opportunities for self-improvement. Although I wish we did sometimes life really has no handbook on whether we are making the right choices or not. For myself, one of the biggest decisions I have had to make is whether or not to have corrective leg surgery. Life-changing surgery.

I was born with twisted hips. I don’t actually know that we know what it was that caused my hips to be twisted but I know my parents knew was my hips were twisted from birth. It became apparent when I was a toddler I was walking with my feet faced inwards, and to me that was my natrual way of walking. Some people know this as pigeon toe. It was known from a toddler onwards that I may need corrective leg surgery in my life.

When I reached school age I started to have check ups with the hospital, and was referred for multiple rounds of physiotherapy to see If I could train my legs to walk straight without having to resort to the surgery.

This year I have been focusing on building my confidence a lot, check out my recent post about my confidence journey, here.

When I was a child I had to make one of the hardest decisions of my life. Before the age of 13 as well. Since it was my life and my body my parents left the desision primarily down to me. It was the decision whether or not to have corrective surgery on my hips. Corrective legs surgery would be having both of my legs broken at the hips by surgeons and set straight using pins.

corrective leg surgery

bullying was such a big part of my decision on having corrective leg surgery.

One of the things that persuaded me with my decision was the bullies. I went to an all-girl school, and I was just an easy target. The girls taunted me for not being able to walk straight. I will never forget the day that I was chased home from school by a group of girls in my year, laughing at the way I was walking, trying to catch me.

One of the girls managed to push me into a bush. The road home was a long straight road, and it felt neverending. I remember getting near to the end of the road and seeing this woman in her garden, I managed to grab her attention. She came to my aid as she got in the way of the girls, giving me a few extra seconds to get across the main road, and into the house where I locked the door straight away behind me. (my parents weren’t impressed, the school said it was a grey area of being something they could deal with/or the police. I didn’t want the police involved).

Another part of the decision to have surgery was the fact I was constantly falling over, I would have scabs on my knees from falling into the gravel (not that it’s has changed much, I still fall over nothing.)

I remember when I made the choice to have my legs surgically corrected I was 100% sure at the time. Even though I knew it was going to be a massive thing.

Having this surgery is a massive part of my past. One I often reflect on.

The first surgery took around 8 hours. 8 hours under the knife, where they reset both of my legs at the same time. Where the operation had taken so long I was then given a blood transfusion due to losing so much blood.
It makes me sad now. Because of that, I can’t give blood myself now.

The recovery from the surgery wasnt the most pleasent. I spent months in a wheelchair and bed. And then again on crutches. My legs had forgotten how to work, where I lost all my muscles from not using them, so I had to learn to walk again. I still remember the day I stoof up from the wheelchair for the first time since the operation. In my head I knew how to walk so I didnt even realise it was going to take so much to be able to return to normality. I think I thought I would be able to just stand up out of the wheelchair I’d been stuck in and just walk… as I said, it really didn’t work like that. 2 surgeries, months of being between crutches and a wheelchair I was finally back on my feet. Literally.

I’ve had problems with my health for a long time, Check out my post where I talk about the effects on my mental health, here.

It may have taken a long time. But I did get there. I still have a few problems with my hips now. Recently, I have been disagnosed with the beginning of atheritus in my hips. Which is a result of the surgeries I had when I was younger. I dont get the pain I’d gone through before, but the odd tingle. And of course not to mention the 2 double scars on each of my hips.

corrective leg surgery

Do I regret having the surgery?

This is a question that is so hard to answer. I wish I had of waited, yes. Having the surgery so young was something that has effected me in many ways. I should be taller than I am but then my body was spending more time healing then growing. I know that my dad does regret letting me go through with the surgery now. However, I don’t think it is something I can actually regret, as it had some positive aspects. I will admit that now though, I do agree that it has had more negative impacts on me than positive. If I could change anything, I would have had the corrective leg surgery a bit later in life.

I started thinking about the operation because it had been a major thing that I had got to experience. When I think about what I have achieved in my life so far, I feel that overcoming this was such a massive achievement, because I did it! I got through it.

Want to learn more about me? read my post 21 random things that you probably don’t know about me, here.

To me, it proves something major. Ok, I’m gonna be really cliche here. But if I can get through this. As well as half the other shit I’ve been through I can get through anything.

The past is who makes you who you are today, all the struggles and challenges happen for a reason, to build who you are today. This is just one thing like you will have one, and more things that will build you as a person! these experiences in life we should take the time to value and learn from.

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