Communities

What’s your favourite online community to listen and talk to people you relate to, or gather tips and tricks for your hobbies, or for entertainment? A lot of my friends love Twitter, but I just can’t get into it. I guess I just haven’t found my people, but I’m not willing to put in the work when I find Reddit and Pinterest so much easier to navigate.

Let me know what you think!

Jumbled thoughts on the Internet

I think that like a lot of people throughout the last year, I have spent far too much time online. And that’s coming from me! Honestly, I go through waves of different desires I have being online. Sometimes I’m filled with the desperation to have something to show for myself spending all this time indoors, and so I look up crochet tutorials, sewing ideas, even just inspiration for recycling/reusing household items for decoration. Others, I need an escape, and endless scrolling is easy to fall into. But I also sometimes want that wanderlust and excitement for the future, which can be difficult when the people I turn to are actually out in the world having fun! Even if I’m judging them for not staying home and staying safe, I can’t deny a little jealousy bubbling in my chest.

And then there’s the true black hole of the internet… Online shopping. I mean, how am I supposed to resist a little retail therapy when my tailored ads are showing me exactly what I secretly want all the time? I cannot be held accountable. Well, I will be held accountable by my bank, but that can just stay between me and my account manager. I wish though, that my online shopping had some sort of pattern to it. One minute I’m looking at resin jewellery, then boots, then buying this collagen cream, then it’s back to hand painted ceramics, plants, and those little octopus toys that turn inside out so you can wordlessly tell someone if you’re in a bad mood. Although looking at that list, something is very clear. I don’t need any of it. I don’t buy much that I do need, besides food and essentials. I need something to descale the kettle, but meh, it can wait. I can’t, however, wait three days for my new crafting project to arrive in the mail. It’s a strange feeling.

Sometimes I’ll even just browse online shopping websites, not because I plan on purchasing anything, but because I’ve always enjoying browsing in store just to see what’s on offer or in fashion, and I want to revive that feeling. Picture myself standing in front of a shoe display, just without the anxiety of the store attendant coming over to ask me if I need any help. Whilst I would prefer the in store experience for shoes, I think the world of makeup has opened up to me know that it’s online. No pressure, you know? I don’t have to feel surrounded by people who can apply the products so much better than me, and thinking that they must be judging the way I look. That is just worry though, I would probably get over it if I actually ever forced myself to go into a store. Alas, maybe one day.

I miss markets and craft fairs though. Buying $2 art prints and a mini journal to take home, feeling like I supported a small business. Now, you end up paying twice as much on shipping costs and it doesn’t feel worth it, especially when you’re trying to not splash all of your cash. Or buying oddities from op shops. Little figurines!

If you can’t tell, I didn’t really plan this blog before sitting down to write. I’m just trying to use this space to work out my jumble of thoughts, and be honest about it too. When have I ever tried to make myself look like an expert? This pandemic has shaken me up just as much as the next person. Here at least I can focus my jumbles on one topic, and hope you can relate even just a little!

Autumnal Ingredients

Here’s a fact about me… I have oily skin. Around 50% of the population actually have oily skin so at least I’m not alone here. Hopefully it’ll mean I’ll get less wrinkles! Now we’ve transitioned into Autumn, some areas of my skin have actually turned a bit dry… very unlike me. So anyway, this inspired me to get researching into the best skincare ingredients to use in Autumn and Winter. I’m going to talk through what I found with you guys.

Of course, Hyaluronic Acid is a key ingredient needed in our skincare routines at this time of year. It works as a magnet for moisture, helping cells to retain as much hydration as possible so that the skin feels and looks plump and healthy. If this isn’t an ingredient you have in your skincare routine all year-round, you need to get on board with it!

Next up, Ceramides. I’ve regularly heard about Ceramides from skincare experts but never invested time into finding out more about the ingredient. Skincare products containing ceramides will help reinforce your skin’s barrier and increase hydration, all while reducing fine lines and wrinkles – could it get any better! This is an ingredient I’m definitely going to be adding to skincare routine soon, I’m just trying to find the perfect product… I’m thinking maybe some kind of serum?

The ingredient I found most interesting is Ginger Root. Unlike the other ingredients mentioned, its main purpose isn’t to hydrate the skin. However, it can help boost radiance and reduce redness, which I’m also very prone to in these chillier months. I discovered this moisturiser recently in Holland & Barrett whilst shopping with my friend. It’s formulated with Ginger Root Extract and has been a life saviour for me recently. It’s definitely the best moisturiser for oily skin that I’ve managed to find so far. The combination of the Ginger Root Extract and Aloe Vera in the cream makes for a perfect hydration boost for my dry patches, whilst also calming my redness. Not to mention its light non-greasy consistency to help prevent my breakouts. Could it get any better!

That’s enough from me for today, I hope you enjoyed reading this. Who knew skincare could be so much fun!

Complications and Epiphanies

Welcome back to my blog!

Sorry I’ve taken some time to return to regular writing, but the whole pandemic has really had me down in the dumps, and you know how hard it is to be creative when you just feel so, meh.

I know it’s not good to promote going out, but when the cafes opened back up it was like a godsend for my creativity. I got into the habit of settling down with a coffee and my laptop and getting on with my book. My book! The thing I’ve been trying to write for about six years on and off, but would just love to finish. At least get the words out, and leave editing for later. I don’t know if it was the ambient café music and usual aromas, the light chatter around me lifting off some of that pressure, or the coffee itself kicking my brain into gear, but something just clicked.

Without giving too much away, because I don’t really want to spill all my plot points now when everything is still so fluid, I was just sitting there (with an iced coffee for a change, it was a warm day), and had one of those you idiot moments. You just don’t realise when you write in a setting that isn’t present day, how much work goes into making it realistic. What would they use in their hair? To keep their hands moisturised? Natural highlighter, maybe? We don’t know, maybe one day someone will make a movie and undoubtably use some drop-dead gorgeous woman as the protagonist and give her contouring to die for, and I’d like to be able to explain that. Forward thinking never hurt anyone, right?

I was reading this article on Lady Trotula, a French woman who pioneered women’s beauty and health in the 12th Century. The takeaway point I found resonated most was the fact that in that time, makeup was not something pure or respectable women used, rather their attractiveness was based solely on natural looks. So, my protagonist would need to use something easy to obtain, which didn’t appear to alter her natural looks. Ha! That was a challenge. But I ordered another coffee and got to it.

I reached the point thinking I needed a product to reference that we use now, but has a very simple extraction process, and generally only one, two or three easily obtained ingredients. And then I came across Squalane. One ingredient, derived from olive oil. Well, it started off being extracted from sharks, but when one writes a novel she gets a little creative license. This product is a true multitasker, you can use it for you hair as well as your skin, on your lips and your nails, and on dry patches or cracked heels. I know I can’t just make it seem like she uses straight olive oil, so we had to give it a new name, just for my book.

I wanted some part of ‘olive’ in there, but I also love the ‘Squa’ sound. So instead of squalane, she uses squalive. Perfect!

Well, that’s all I have time for today, back to the coffee shop for more writing and more inspiration! Maybe I’ll see you there for a socially distanced wave!

Signing out.

Finally getting a handle on things

I know I’ve been saying how the internet phenomenons have been perpetually getting out of hand as of late. I also mentioned that I’d try my best to keep up with everything and although I’d say it’s still far from perfect I think I’ve found a way to finally get a grip on everything going on. It may take a while for me to form coherent thoughts on everything but at least now I can finally get mostly everything into perspective when I write my articles.

I’ll keep you guys posted if anything starts getting out of hand again.

The most interesting makeup hacks found on Instagram

I love looking through life hacks whether they’re useful to me or not because they’re just genuinely interesting. As someone that struggles somewhat with makeup I personally think that any assistance when it comes to looking better is a massive help. Looking around Instagram there’s a bunch of these makeup hacks that you can find by following any massive number of people. The sheer number of people with makeup tips, tricks and hacks is quite frankly astounding and also equally daunting. In light of those facts I’ve gotten together a few of the ones that I personally think are pretty neat and might be useful to know. Before we get into the hacks though maybe try out the lunar moisturizing mud mask for an amazing facial mask experience. Now back to the hacks–

Hack #1 Use a fork for contouring

It might be hard to fix your contour without a proper guide. Handy little tip is take a fork and place the center along the bridge of your nose. If you think that sounds crazy go grab a fork and try it out. You’ve got a much better chance of not messing up your contour this way.

Hack #2 Use a wide rubber band for the perfect French tip

You know those big rubber bands they use to bundle broccoli at the supermarket. Wrap around the tip of your fingernail and just reveal the portion you want to get that French tip. Don’t worry if you get some on the rubber band that’s kind of what it’s there for. It takes a little practice but once you get the hang of it you’ll never want to go back.

Hack #3 Beauty Blender egg surprise

It’s straightforward just keep your beauty blender in one of those plastic eggs they use for Easter. It’s cheap and it helps carrying around your beauty blender without having to worry about it getting smushed around in your bag.

Hack #4 Cat’s Eye with post-it notes

Cat’s Eyes are ridiculously hard to pull off. For those of us who haven’t put in enough practice yet place a sticky note next to your eye. Finding the right position takes a little practice but way less effort than a cat eye without it.

Rapid Increase in Internet Phenomenons

It seems a new Internet Phenomenon is almost a weekly event nowadays. The online world is so fast paced it sometimes feels incredibly difficult to keep up.

I’m doing my best though, and have something new for you that will be up next week (I’m hoping!). Please come back in 7 days or so and have a read.

Will the Skincare Industry ever see a decline?

That is the question I want to propose to you today. It is quite a big one to tackle, but let’s do our best to see if we can crack it.

Unlike previous industries I’ve highlighted in this blog, it seems to me that the makeup and specifically skincare industry seem to be going leaps and bounds, and showing no signs of slowing.

The question is, is there a particular reason for this? The global population is increasing, which evidently means as time goes by there are going to be more people in the marketplace. But are people generally becoming more and more aesthetically conscious?

Are we living and behaving in such a way that prohibits our bodies natural defences against aging? One could argue that we are healthier than ever. Globalisation has meant most of the western world has access to almost all foods, meaning a completely balanced and optimised diet is easily achievable. Whether or not many people are actually following through with this is a debate we should perhaps leave for another day.

I feel there’s a bit of dichotomy in the western world in terms of health. Many of us are incredibly health conscious and would aptly be described as health freaks. The health of these people’s skin will be benefiting from their prolonged exercise and well balanced diets. Perhaps their need for skincare products is declining.

Growth in global beauty market

 

On the other hand though, a great deal of the population is hopelessly lazy. Advents in technology mean that we can afford to be lazy if needs be. We can work desk jobs, and still find a way to make a living and survive without exerting too much energy. In many countries this may account for the majority of the population. Perhaps this is the reason why the beauty and skincare industry is still on the rise. These people aren’t taking proper care of themselves which is leading to a decline in the appearance of their skin.

Finally our addiction to our screens (phones, laptops, tv) means we are staying up later than ever. This is having a huge negative affect on our skin which has naturally led to the industry profiting.

Despite all these battles we have with our skin, the good thing is is the industry is there to help us. There are many affordable products out there that do an incredible job at combatting all that I’ve mentioned above.

Moisturisers, face masks, and serums to name but a few are all designed with this in mind. This under eye serum in particular has been known to have a tremendous effect on the battling skin decline. Please give it a try and let me know what you think.

Some Things Never Change

Despite the fact that the world wide web forever seems to be changing in multiple ways, we mustn’t forget that some trends never seem to change and are perpetually constant. Coming up, I’ll be posting about a special subject that seems to be standing the test of time.

How the internet has changed me!

In my first two articles I discussed how the Internet has changed the beauty industry and the men’s grooming industry.

Today however, I wanted to write about how the Internet has changed me!

My studies and research over the past year or so have had a profound effect on me, and as a result I have changed quite a bit as a person.

The point in which I was doing extensive reading on the men’s grooming industry – so I could put together an incredible for you guys! – was when I really started to get interested and begin to think about how I could change my habits and daily routine with regards to grooming as well as dress and attire.

I tried my best to look at my outward appearance from an objective bird’s eye view. This is an exercise that I also read about on the internet. In doing so, my aim was to get an idea of how I portray myself to the people that I see regularly in my life, from work colleagues to family and friends.

I came to the conclusion that I often look scruffy and have a habit of rushing in the morning and paying very little attention to my overall looks and appearance.

scruffy beard

When I started thinking about it, I began to realise that this negligence might be having a negative affect on my life. It may be halting my chance of receiving the promotion that I really want, or it may be one of the reasons why my girlfriends parents are quite critical of me.

When I came to this realisation, I decided that it was time for a change. I started shopping for smarter clothes, and taking the time necessary to wash and prepare them better. I also decided to try and keep my beard more styled and kept consistently.

This is much easier said than done! My biggest ally in this time of change turned out to be this, my trusty tool for combing my beard. I’m not sure what I’d do without it.

Every day this was the one item I’d turn to to help me quickly get my beard in shape before I left the house. I highly recommend you get one yourself if you’re a bearded man that’s short on time. What a lifesaver!