Friday, 7 April 2017

THE UGLY TRUTH BEHIND MY SKINCARE INGREDIENTS! ~ NEW Natural Skincare routine

Hey everyone...

click to watch my video!

So the past 3 weeks i have been doing a completely different skincare routine. The needs of my skin have changed as does everyone else. the skincare routine i was doing at 18 is no longer required as my skin now needs hydration and rebalancing, whereas at 18 i was looking to treat my acne. I wanted to switch up my routine as my skin was a loose canon and couldn't be controlled. So i thought, what if its like this because of harsh chemicals? I researched the ingredients and i was totally shocked at the list of chemicals used in my skincare. now SOME of these ingredients are not harmful however i am not comfortable with applying them to my face overnight when my skin has time to breathe.

From there on, I have been using all skin care products from LUSH cosmetics because they are the only company i know of that create products with natural ingredients. I wanted to try the more natural approach to test whether natural based products can affect my skin and the results can be seen down below. Take into consideration that i eat relatively healthy on the norm, drink about half as much water as i probably should be, and i am on cerazette contraception. These factors may influence your current skin situation! 

Right side: 3 weeks ago, Middle: 10 days ago, Left: Today (I had the flash on, it's not highlight don't worry!)
As you can see i still have acne scarring but the overall look to my skin is MUCH healthier and it feels amazing!

Now if you have a routine that works amazing for you please continue to do it, this is just the best one for me BUT i do encourage you guys to be careful about what you are letting your skin marinate in overnight!! Hope this video was helpful in some way! Below i have listed some of the most popular skincare ingredients and their effects on your skin! I'm not trying to make everyone go au natural but these are the ones that alarmed me. Again, do not let this alarm you but i personally am not comfortable with using these ingredients on my skin ~ xo

popular product ingredients and their effects on skin
Info taken from this blog - check here for more info!
http://www.cosmeticsinfo.org will also help you to check out your ingredients!


  • DimethiconeIt traps everything under it—including bacteria, sebum, and impurities—which could lead to increased breakouts and blackheads. The coating action actually prevents the skin from performing its normal activities—like sweating, temperature regulating, sloughing off dead skin cells, etc. Prolonged exposure to dimethicone can actually increase skin irritation, due to the coating property and because dimethicone is listed as a possible skin and eye irritant
  • Perfume ~ Most definitely will dry your skin out. There are some Products that claim to treat dry skin yet contain this ingredient?
  • phthalatesphthalates – which are used in cosmetics and also in many plastic objects – have been found to act as a hormone disruptor linked to reproductive defects, insulin resistance and developmental problems in children. They are usually found under the fragrance ingredient.
  • Mineral oil ~ Mineral oil forms a film on the skins surface that cannot be absorbed, therefore blocking your pores and trapping bacteria. It may also prevents any natural goodness getting to your pores!
  • polyaminopropyl biguanide ~ found in my Loreal skin perfection 15 second miracle cleansing oil. This ingredient is banned in personal care products but the substance is still being used! Im going nowhere near it! It's banned for a reason and im not finding out why!














Saturday, 4 March 2017

February Monthly Discount Codes

Hey guys so I thought I would compact these discount codes and post monthly as I have more discount codes to come! This is a simple and easy way to get the codes without the fluff! If no new discount codes are added, then I will skip the month! 

 ♥ Type these codes into the promotional discount code bar to get discount. ♥ 

IRRESISTIBLE ME | 10% OFF EVERYTHING | CODE: ' IrresistibleShannon'

http://bit.ly/IM_Hair1647

LANI HAIR OIL | 15% OFF | CODE: ' Shani15'
http://thebeautyandtheblondie.blogspot.co.uk/2014/07/lani-hair-treatment-review-15-discount.html

Stvdio5 Vegan food for your skin | 50% OFF | CODE ' shannon 50 '
http://thebeautyandtheblondie.blogspot.co.uk/2015/07/stvdio5-vegan-food-for-your-skin.html

SexyBox Lingerie Subscription Box |
$15 off Monthly subscription CODE: 'SexyShannon40'
$20 off Quarterly subscription CODE: 'Sexy3Box'
http://thebeautyandtheblondie.blogspot.co.uk/2015/08/sexybox-collaboration-discount-code.html

SOUFEEL Jewellery | 5% OFF | CODE: 'Shannon5'
http://www.soufeel.com/soufeel-charms/?utm_campaign=YTB_J

Coconut Lane | 20% OFF | CODE: 'shanifani20'
https://www.coconut-lane.com

Milk and Blush | £5-£10 OFF | UK CODE: 'SHANI5' WORLDWIDE CODE: 'SHANI10'
https://dirtylooks.com



Wednesday, 29 June 2016

The Anxiety Diaries: Making the step towards change

Welcome back to my blog!
 
Instead of talking all things beauty, today I'm going to talk about something a bit different. I've wanted to film a video surrounding this subject for a LONG ASS time but i feel like it's something that can be explained more efficiently in text. I'm starting a series on my blog called The Anxiety Diaries. I was very much inspired by other bloggers to construct this series, but I also wanted to use this as a therapeutic technique for me and hopefully for you. The first part to this is obviously the introduction but im going to take you through the nature of my mental health disorder and how I have finally learnt and encouraged myself to take a step into the future. I'll also take you through tips and tricks that have helped me.
 

My Story

 
The onset of my mental health disorder started in the second year of university in 2015. I had suspicions that something was not quite right years prior to the onset, but it was something I turned a blind eye too. The symptoms I had initially experienced were: Excessive worrying i.e. "What if I don't hand this in on time" and "I hope my loved ones are okay when im not there to look after them, in the event that something bad happens". I had also experienced a symptom called depersonalisation-derealisation. I want to use a certified definition to explain phenomenon but I feel like I am able to describe it, tailored to my experience. Imagine feeling like you're in a dream, a movie or a game. Nothing feels real and you do not understand your surroundings and consequently question your existence. This sends an alarming signal to your body because you become scared. Additionally, you experience memory loss because that section of your life is that stressful your mind will do everything it can to protect you. I tend to shut off to the world when this happens. I want to be alone, I lose concentration, I appear very zoned out! Scary huh? Imagine this every day and your body still does not adapt to this feeling. This symptom was persistent throughout the past 5 years of my life and certainly was and still is the most concerning of the bunch. At this time, I put this pair together and blamed it on the stress of university.
 
A year or so down the line, I am currently here writing this blog post. Im afraid to say my symptoms have increased in quantity and intensity. I now deal with this on more or less on a daily basis:
  • Chest pains (These make you feel like you are having a heart attack)
  • My heart pounding in my chest (Almost like its jumping)
  • Burning sensation in my muscles (Again, suspected heart attack)
  • Pins and Needles in my arms
  • Breathlessness and a tight chest
  • Persistent headaches (Through my temples, at the bottom of my head, behind my ears. My head almost feels heavy, tense and fuzzy)
  • Hypersensitivity to loud sounds
  • A general notion of feeling like im going crazy.
  • Trouble sleeping (I am usually over thinking or when I feel myself drifting into sleep my brain will wake me up. As a result I feel like I am 'falling' and jump into a state of panic)
  • Muscle Tension
  • Overthinking situations
Little did i know, but all of these symptoms interlink with each other. for example, the muscle tension may cause the pains in my chest. I then interpret the pains in my chest as a heart attack and consequently think im going to die. This heightened emotion sends me into panic mode and I sometimes end up having a panic attack. LUCKILY, my panic attacks have decreased (touch wood - I don't want to tempt fate). As a result of this commotion, I still remain tense and the cycle starts again. I have now come to the realisation that this negative cycle must and needs to stop.
 
Now there ARE days and there will be days when YOU are more likely to deal with these symptoms effectively and brush them off. Other days, you will want to curl into a ball and accept defeat. At times, it has driven me to a state of depression. I had thoughts go through my worried and over thinking mind: "its getting worse, where will I be this time next year", "I cannot deal with this anymore", "I wish i was able to think, act and feel normally". Interestingly, anxiety and depression have a high co-morbidity with each other and again I want to try my best to stop these symptoms before it gets to that stage. I am less likely to be resilient against these symptoms when mother nature visits! ( Just a text to say im not preg would be great ). This is a very important point, because I can now recognise when I am more vulnerable to my symptoms, and take extra measures to remain strong.
 

Making the next step to recovery

Based around my experience, I will list some points below on how to take that brave step towards recovery.
 
  1. Remember that the symptoms you are experiencing are just symptoms alone. This means that when the root problem is fixed, the symptoms usually disappear.
  2. Speak to your Doctor. This is a very important point to make. I was very scared to speak to my doctor because I couldn't explain how I was feeling and I didn't think he would believe me. But its more common than you think and they have heard it all before so please be reassured!
  3. Make links between your symptoms and how to tackle them. I will touch upon this In the next section.
  4. Have motivation. If you don't feel like you have enough power one day, do not worry. it happens and there is always another day. Never put any excess pressure or stress on yourself.

Treatment

I want to split this section into separate parts. I do not know what had caused my anxiety so I wrote down some possible explanations and went from there. These may or may not be different to your experience. Everyone is different and that makes us beautiful.
 


SSRI's

After visiting my doctor, he recommended I go on a 10mg dose of Citalopram. At first, this scared me and I mean it really scared me. This was when it all felt real. I never wanted to go on serious medication especially at 20 years old but I was so desperate to feel normal, I tried them anyway. I took them for a week and it was the worst week of my life. Everything I was feeling was multiplied by 10. I had chronic headaches and it felt like electricity was buzzing through my head. I felt very sick and out of it. I also had intense nightmares that alerted me further when I was awake. Now don't let this scare you because everyones body chemistry reacts differently with medication. You may have zero side effects plus taking the meds at night can minimise the experience of these side effects. I did stop taking these meds because I wanted to use them as a last resort.
 
Now bear in mind the cause of anxiety. SSRI's usually only work if your anxiety is due to a chemical imbalance in your brain.
 

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

I was referred to undergo CBT to change my thought processes. I did not actually get round to this therapy, however I did start off with some self help books and reading websites online. Self help books helped me to UNDERSTAND what I was going through and therefore normalised it for me. If I understood why I was experiencing anxiety on this level, surely I could control it?
 

How I am making the step towards change

I sat down one day and said to myself that I have had enough. It's time for me to take control of myself. I had written down what may have caused my anxiety. The information I had read around this made me more educated about the nature of the disorder and subsequently made me feel more powerful and in control of what I was going through. I had noted down all of my symptoms and how I could control them also.
 
I am currently trying to remove my anxiety completely and here's how. I have tried SO many things! I am also attempting to follow a process of elimination.
 
  1. I am getting my implanon implant removed. There has been a suspected link between female contraception and anxiety. whether or not the link is clear, I want to try it to see whether it calms my anxiety. If it does not calm down, I will also come off  the mini pill. I was using these two forms of contraception together to stop bleeding. I want to see whether the imbalance of hormones is affecting the anxiety.
  2. I am cutting out nicotine and coffee completely. Im sure we are aware of these neurological stimulants and my brain needs much less stimulating!
  3. I regularly eat healthy and drink lots of water but I will be exercising a lot more to see if it boosts the mood of my mind.
  4. I am creating plans to minimise the effects of my symptoms (see below)
  5.  

How I am minimising the effects of my symptoms

This is something I am yet to try and give feedback on. I will be trying these steps to see If they help my symptoms and of course I will be updating you in due course.
 
 
  • My heart pounding in my chest (Almost like its jumping)
  1.  By this point, I am paying too much attention to my body. Try and distract yourself, followed by thoughts such as " everythings normal, my body is trying to trick me into thinking something is wrong".
  2. Try deep breaths. Breathe in for 5 seconds, hold for 2 seconds and breath out for 5 seconds.
  3. If this doesn't work, try belly breathing to stay calm about the situation.
  • Burning sensation in my muscles (Again, suspected heart attack)
  1. This usually follows muscle tension or muscle spasms. Try stretching your arms out and relaxing.
  • Pins and Needles in my arms
  1. This usually follows muscle tension or muscle spasms. Try stretching your arms out and relaxing.
  • Breathlessness and a tight chest
  1. The main solution for this is to focus on your breathing and stay relaxed.
  2. find a comfy position where you are able to breathe clearer.
  3. I find that menthol oil on my chest and under my nose helps.
  • Persistent headaches (Through my temples, at the bottom of my head, behind my ears. My head almost feels heavy, tense and fuzzy)
  1. I am yet to find a solution for this symptom. Try rubbing your temples or above your neck whilst closing your eyes.
  2. Take some pain relief
  3. Take yourself away from screens such as computers and phones
  4. Drink lots of water. Dehydration will make your headaches worse.
  • Hypersensitivity to loud sounds
  1. This is quite difficult as I am rather hyper vigilant to sounds. Where possible, play the sound that scares you and tell yourself repeatedly that its ok.
  2. Irritability can occur as a result of being scared by loud sounds. Try breathing exercises.  
  • A general notion of feeling like im going crazy.
  1. This usually follows depersonalisation. As hard as it sounds, take yourself out of the situation and control your thoughts. Training yourself to control your thoughts is very difficult.
  2. Distract yourself as much as possible. Get up and walk. Socialise if you feel like it. Adult colouring has helped a number of people to stay calm and stabilize themselves.
  3. Listening to white noise has helped me! It almost makes it super hard to think and therefore think drastic thoughts.
  4. Anxiety tricks you into thinking you are going crazy. Tell yourself that it's lying to you.  
  • Trouble sleeping (I am usually over thinking or when I feel myself drifting into sleep my brain will wake me up. As a result I feel like I am 'falling' and jump into a state of panic)
  1. Relaxing before bed helps to get me off to sleep. I use an app called pacifica. It takes you through muscle relaxation whilst playing relaxing sounds in the background.
  2. Write down your thoughts before bed. This helps to avoid overthinking.
  • Muscle Tension
  1. A body massager really helps to leave your body feeling relaxed. Buy your own personal one so you can use it whenever. This has helped me massively.
  2. Muscle tension causes chest pains and headaches, so tackling muscle tension, will help tackle the following symptoms.
  3. Go to the gym as this will tire out your muscles and boost your mood!
  • Overthinking situations
  1. This requires a lot of discipline. Focus on your thoughts and ask yourself if its true or whether your mind has made it up. Everyone overthinks from time to time, but anxiety will make it worse. Ask yourself if it makes logic sense.
  2. I find it helps when I think of my thoughts like water. If I have something on my mind, I take it for face value and let it float through my mind. I then take the over thought situation and let that follow suit. It's easier to embrace every scenario but remember to not believe everything your mind is telling you.
  • Chest pains (These make you feel like you are having a heart attack)
  1. Belly breathing will help prevent a panic attack from happening as a result of chest pains, especially if you have health anxiety.
  2. lightly massage the area as it can be a build up of acid
  3. Chest pains are usually the result of muscle tension, so try stretching and relaxing your muscles.

I will be keeping you guys updated on this process. I hope and pray something works for me as I would rather stay away from medication. I hope this has helped you in some way. I have come a long way and learnt alot. Just because i have a mental illness, does not mean i am any less of a person. I feel like it makes us who we are. We learn so much as a result.

 

s x 

 
 

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Get Ready with me & A personal chat about my anxiety/panic attacks! VIDEO!

 
Want to watch the video? Click here

Hello my babbers!
So in this video I show you how to create this highly requested pop of colour makeup look! I decided to create something a bit different from my usual eye looks, and I love these two colours together. Not going to lie, the pink was spontaneous but I love it and I hope you guys do too!
 
So in this video I also cover a few issues! The first is that I am back at university (woooo), famous last words I know haha! For anyone wondering, I am studying Forensic Psychology with the intent of earning a bachelors of science with honours! So I have a bunch of pre filmed videos but will occasionally be filming new ones. I am hoping to film at least once a week. Now... I have also had a few issues lately that I wish to discuss. It's not something I wanted to discuss on social media because its still raw to me.
 
For a few years I have been dealing with Anxiety. Although for the first year or so, it was very underlying and I could brush it off and get on with my daily life. However, in the past year its been bothering me a bit more than usual. Lately, I have been dealing with severe panic attacks. When I say severe, I mean 'visiting A&E because I thought I was having a heart attack' severe. Now, usually I am able to understand what triggers panic attacks and subsequently I am able to understand what to do to prevent them from happening. But this time round, these panic attacks spring from no where.
 
The other morning around 12:30am I woke up and felt an intense pain in my chest. My heart rate was incredibly fast and I could feel the pain spreading from behind my boob (soz about the detail), up to my neck and into my back. I couldn't breath, I was dizzy and I was very incoherent. I could also feel warmth to this pain almost like indigestion. From memory, with my granddad having multiple severe heart attacks, I could remember him describing his symptoms. All of those symptoms felt like what I was having. Now with most of my family having heart issues, I had convinced myself something was very wrong. Now other than the physical distress, I was also battling with my mind. I have a very bad fear of dying/close people dying. The fear Is more intense for dying unnaturally via terrorism, car accident etc, not natural death (aka your time was up when it was meant to be up). Now imagine convincing yourself you are having a heart attack, you're going to die but you are scared of dying??? It makes the situation 100x worse. Anyway, results were fine no issues to suggest I had a heart attack but it did suggest something else, I was having a panic attack but it was to the extent that I was affected physically and mentally.
 
Because my heart was beating so fast and my muscles were tensing up in my chest (causing the chest pain), I still feel sore In that chest region. I also felt silly going to A&E with my results coming back normal. I felt drained because it strung a whole load of other emotions: embarrassed, overwhelmed and almost like no one believed me, that I was over reacting. But then I thought about it, its nothing to be embarrassed about, nor should I worry what anyone thinks because I know my body better than anyone else in the world does. Something was wrong. This wasn't the first time I have had a panic attack but it sure as hell was the worst. Instead of looking at this situation negatively, its essential you pull positives out of this: a) if it happens again I know what it is b) my heart wasn't affected and it was perfectly 'normal'. and c) I wasn't really in any trouble, I was making myself believe I was.
 
Now I know this much about panic attacks and more specifically panic disorder:
 
  • Its classed as recurring and regular panic attacks for no apparent reason
  • It affects more people than you think
  • It may stem from phobias, PTSD and anxiety
  • Your body is overwhelmed with sensations, mainly fear, and anxiety.
  • You may have symptoms such as: Incoherent speech, sweating, pain in the chest or legs, sickness, dizziness, breathlessness.
  • It's very real. It should be taken seriously and just because it cannot be seen, that doesn't mean its not there.
Treatment wise, I am on beta blockers to slow down my heart rate when it happens again. It's scary to write that knowing full well a panic attack will emerge anywhere and everywhere. Im also attending counselling which will help me with my phobia, negative thinking patterns and will help me to effectively provide treatment for myself to steer away from situations where I may be vulnerable and also techniques to calm me down. I am yet to start this so I will keep you updated but its not nice. I feel like I need to combat my intense phobia of death (which will be hard seeing as all species need a fear of death to keep them alive), which will hopefully change my thinking patterns. Hopefully I will be able to look at a plane and think " I can get on that, travel and arrive safely rather than thinking If I get on that it will crash and I will die".
 
If you have felt like this at all, please chat with me on my social media. I would love to hear from you and maybe share a few self help techniques. If you are battling with it on a daily basis like me, remember you are ok. You are not under any threat, its just your body sending mixed signals. you get stronger after each episode.
 
hugs and kisses xoxox
 
 
 
 
 
 

Friday, 2 October 2015

Halloween Makeup Tutorial part 2/2 : Chelsea Grin

 

Hey ya'll here Is the final episode of my Halloween looks! I want to create more but I literally have no time on my hands now I am back at university - waaaaah :( ... but I wanted to create something fun and gorey! I hope you enjoy this as much as I did creating it! Of course below will be some money savers for Halloween! Ones I have used in both videos. I haven't mentioned any products because they were very generalizable!

Products that will save you the money

Instead of me writing some stuff about what I used, which I mentioned in the video, im going to note down what will save you money!
 
♥  Save money on face paint - I used two lipsticks from makeup revolution, a red and a pink. This cost £2 for both of these beauties, which is roughly the same as 1 pot of good paint! These are super saturated and gorgeous colours! +++++ you don't need to buy 2 colours... mix colours together to create your own shade.
 
♥  Save money on buying fake blood - Fake blood is sooo expensive these days! If you buy the cheaper ones they tend to look tacky and unrealistic. This recipe below will give you the perfect blood for any look!
 
For the blood: mix together 1 teaspoon of washable red paint (for the colour), 1 teaspoon of honey (for the texture) and add  half a teaspoon of cocoa powder ( to add a dark blood colour but to also thicken the mix up).  
 
♥  Save money on sponges - I used a washing up sponge. It has a soft side to apply the lipstick and a rougher side to stipple on glitter and other colours. cut them into pieces for different uses! You can also cut them into different shapes if you have the patience.
 

Click here to watch This video!  

Have you watched part 1? Click here to view!

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Get salon quality nails at home ~ NailHUR && 65% DISCOUNT

Hello my loves! 

So in this video i am showing you how i achieved this gorgeous nail look using nails from the brand NailHUR! They are a brand that offer high quality nails at an affordable price. So you do not need to book an appointment with your salon as you can do this in the comfort of your own home. You can switch up your nail style with the variety of nails available at NAILHUR and even if you like to change them up even more you can even paint over them! This is a much cheaper and easier alternative to a manicure!

So far i have used these nails for around 5 days. They were super easy and quick to apply and they have not budged once. With cheaper nails, you find they fall off or snap easily but these do not! The glue has adhered the nails to my own with such strength, but have still not damaged my nails!

The products in the video:
PLAYFUL (the ones in the picture) | CLICK HERE
CRISS CROSS NAILS | CLICK HERE
NAKEY | CLICK HERE

use code 'BLONDIE65' for 65% off! How cool is that discount? so you can get beautiful nails at a fantastic price