It’s the middle of June already! This is coming to you guys a little later than I had planned… I do have a defence, however: I started a new job this week. It’s not a role with much responsibility but it’s possibly the most physical and repetitive job that I’ve ever had and I’ve come home every day absolutely knackered! I had my content plans and schedules at the ready but zero energy and, admittedly, even less motivation to crack on with any of it. But now it’s Sunday, I feel well and rested again, and another week of repetition is awaiting me tomorrow. It’s still going to be an exhausting few weeks ahead, with the job still being so new, but I am determined to get back to some regularity.
But that’s enough of my excuses! I want to share with you guys some recent favourites. These are things that have either looked after me, boosted me or made my days just that bit more special. I won’t be mentioning any books in favourites posts as I want to save my book opinions for my monthly reading roundup reviews! I have one ready to follow up my May TBR to coming very soon, so don’t forget to follow me if you’d like to see what I think of The Four Agreements, The Historian, A Game of Thrones and Fingersmith!
I’ve always had a difficult scalp. I’ve always had difficult, dry and itchy/sensitive skin in general so my scalp is just an added extension of that discomfort. Also, having naturally curly hair means that I’m more prone to having a dry scalp than those with straight or wavy hair.
“One reason experts say curly hair is so much drier than other types of hair is because there are only 100,000 hairs on a head of curly hair, as opposed to 120,000 hairs on a head of straight hair. And because there is less curly hair, there are fewer follicles, and therefore fewer sebaceous glands to produce oil.”
This is certainly the case with my scalp. It doesn’t take too much, from either the heat, shampoos or pillowcase fabrics, to make my scalp sore and itchy! And, as curly hair tends to require a cocktail of products for its upkeep, product build-up, and the ensuing flakes, is inevitable. All of this over the past few years has, I believe, hindered my hair’s condition and growth, no matter how many curly products I test.
However, as you may remember from my Lush Ultrabland Cleanser post, I had been given a Lush gift card for my birthday and, even after a rather satisfying haul, I still had some spare to return to Lush and have a browse of their haircare. I was already impressed with the gentleness of the products that I’d already chosen and I was determined to find something to cater to my irritated scalp! I’d already tried a couple of medicated and drugstore options over the years, to no real avail and I had high hopes that converting to more natural products would be the answer.
A little tub of Superbalm Scalp Treatment set my gift card back £12.50 for 45g. On first site I thought that was pretty pricey for such a small tin, but I decided to give it a go as it seemed to be ticking all of my boxes, based on its description on their website (yes, I google their products even if I’m stood in Lush. Don’t judge me!):
If you’re on a crusade for a healthier scalp, whether it’s sore, suffers from dandruff or is itchy and flakey, look no further than this expert treatment. Superbalm is packed with coconut oil, candelila wax and soothing essential oils to give maximum attention to scalps in distress. It also has salicylic acid, a safe synthetic beta hydroxyl acid, which acts to clear and press that reset button on the scalp. Salicylic acid is a common ingredient found in aspirin as a pain reliever, and is a plant hormone that can also be found in the bark of the willow tree.
How to use: Using your fingertips, massage a small amount onto targeted areas of your scalp (rather than your whole head of hair) and leave it for about 20 minutes before rinsing out the excess. Then shampoo and condition as usual. In some cases you may still feel a waxiness on the scalp. Don’t worry, this is the product doing its job and will clear over a couple of days.
The mention of “waxiness” was a bit of a concern for me as I didn’t want to end up walking around with a clean but oily scalp. But, nonetheless, I brought it home and went straight into trying it! My scalp was screaming for moisture on that day and I couldn’t wait any longer to attempt to sort it out!
I went a step further than the instructions and used it, not just as a scalp treatment, but as a deep conditioning treatment. I didn’t use much extra, as you really don’t need much! It was all worth it. As soon as I started using the pads of my fingers to massage the oil into my scalp I could almost hear those follicles sighing “ahhh” with relief!
I made sure to thoroughly wash it all out with my Lush Seanik Shampoo Bar and then condition with my regular conditioner. There was the slightest residue on my scalp but it honestly was not noticeable when my hair had dried! Like the product description had claimed, that residue disappeared relatively quickly and even felt a bit like scalp protection; like how you would put on day or night cream to retain moisture.
I bought this last month and started using it immediately although I didn’t start noticing the full benefits of this product until about a couple of weeks into using it! I felt scalp relief upon my first use but my scalp health improved over time and in such a way that I came to notice that my scalp wasn’t irritating me or heating up in the way that it used to!
There are also other uses for this product that I didn’t think of until about a week ago, now making it a staple multi-use item in my beauty box considering just how many times I reach for it:
- Dry skin softener and itch (such as elbows, fingers, knees, legs and upper arm)
- Spot, bite and cut treatment (Superbalm has Salicylic Acid in it and is a non-drying healer)
- Post-shave ointment
This little tub no longer lives in my drawer under my bathroom sink, to only be used when washing my hair, it now gets carried around with me in my backpack! I think you can now see why this has become a May favourite, and possibly a Holy Grail item…
You can grab a 45g tin of Lush’s Superbalm Scalp Treatment for £12.50 – http://bit.ly/2q984RP
Effective sunscreen is a necessity – not a luxury! The problem, however, is that, while most sunscreens do protect from the sun, the product itself can be an irritant to the more sensitively afflicted. In the past I’ve bought my daily and summer sunscreens from the typical French pharmacy brands that usually provide gentler options than your standard drugstore offerings but, let’s be real, they’re not cheap enough if you’re on a pretty strict, virtually non-existent budget! Also, most of the available daily sunscreens, whether drugstore or French pharmacy, tend to struggle under makeup, which makes trying to find some cheap but effective options a bit of a headache!
While shopping for some holiday toiletries in Cardiff’s Superdrug I came across the selection of Solait Anti-Ageing Face Fluids, in a range of SPF options. Not only were they handbag sized, they also claimed to be mattifying! Most sunscreens leave me like an oil slick so for £3.49 each I figured it was worth a shot! I grabbed two, one with SPF 50+ and the other SPF 30. Since buying them I’ve been using them every single day! I took them with me to a blisteringly hot Vienna, at the end of May, and came back home as pale and unburnt as when I left! I’ve since bought two more of the SPF 50+ and have found that, yes, they’re mattifying enough to keep my skin calm throughout the day, but they’re moisturising enough to not need a moisturiser underneath it! What a win! There is a bit of a white cast if you don’t massage it into the skin enough, or if you use way too much on your face, but on my extra pale skin, it doesn’t really show.
The main factor about this sunscreen? I’ve had absolutely no irritation from it! It’s completely surpassed my need to buy Vichy’s Mattifying SPF50, even if I could comfortably afford it! Along with Lush’s Superbalm Scalp Treatment, the Solait Anti-Ageing Face Fluid also now lives in my backpack. Actually, I now have one in each of the bags that I regularly use. That’s how much I love it!
Superdrug Solait Face Fluid SPF50+ are usually £3.49 but you can currently get them as part of the offer: Buy 1 get 2nd 1/2 price on selected Suncare & Travel Accessories.
Ever since graduating from Swansea University back in 2013, I’ve been struggling for a long time with the working world, and the relationship between people and their bosses. I’ve never been the argumentative type, I always work hard and I wouldn’t call myself a rebel in any way. The phrase “Goody-Two-Shoes” has been thrown in my direction more times than I can count, but I’ve still struggled to find my place since leaving Swansea University. Don’t get me wrong, I do love a good bit of collaboration and teamwork, but essentially I like to be my own working entity, with my own principles and standards. I seriously have problems with working for others if I don’t believe, see the value, in their cause, their way of working or how they handle their workforce. There doesn’t even need to be massive mismanagement for me to feel that way – I have just never liked the hierarchical dynamics of offices or other organisational structures.
Sophia Amoruso’s book #Girlboss is on my to-read list but I just haven’t gotten round to reading it yet. But when I spotted the trailer Netflix’s adaptation, I wasted no time in getting started on it!
I initially struggled with the show. The book and TV show are based on Sophia Amoruso’s journey to creating the fashion brand Nasty Gal. Netflix has added the disclaimer that the show is a loosely based adaptation of Amoruso’s life but my thoughts within the first 5 minutes of the show were that Sophia is such a dick! She’s needlessly confrontational, insolent and self-entitled. Admittedly, we almost instantly see her moments of regret after her moments of pouting and misguided wisecracks, but I still felt that throughout the whole show, she was difficult to root for!
And yet, I still found myself wanting her to succeed! I even began witnessing her moments of “nastiness” and thinking “I need to get me some of that attitude!” Yes, she’s a bitch most of the time, but she’s also assertive and driven – qualities that I tend to let go when I’m too busy being “nice”. I ultimately know that I need to get tougher to get more of what I want, but I also know that, despite the character’s success, Sophia takes the nastiness just that bit too far for my liking. Despite all of the success that I could wish for myself, I don’t consider it worth all that much if I isolate myself with stubbornness and “nastiness” rather than strength.
This is absolutely a May favourite because it got me thinking! I binged on Girlboss within two days and I’m still thinking a lot about it over a month later! I may have conflicted feelings about the lead but I have been finding my inner “nasty gal” mentally quoting Sophia in the face of life these days.
“Bring on adulthood, motherfucker” is my new mantra!
I love Lindsey! I need to dedicate a whole post to my love for this girl! Ever since I discovered her music back in 2010, I’ve found myself never skipping her tunes when they come up on a shuffled playlist on my iPod! Although they are mostly instrumental tracks, Shadows, Shatter Me, The Arena and Something Wild are my pep-talk songs! They’ve boosted me through hard times, inspired my writing and made sure that I remember that I’m not alone in how I feel when I’m down.
Lindsey’s latest release Lost Girls is now joining that pep-talk playlist! “Lost girls find a way” is the only line of lyrics within the entirely instrumental track. And they’re a perfect set of words for those who always feel like they’re lost, but have gotten used to sorting out their dilemmas! There’s nothing wrong with finding yourself lost every once in awhile because you’re constantly sharpening your skills for finding your way out of the darkness. As someone who’s felt lost for most of her life, this song is a comforting reminder of the good that comes from constantly having to figure yourself, and your life, out!
The video is a continuation of the story that we see in the video for Shatter Me – the ballerina now has her liberty but feels the fear of the strange new world and the challenges ahead. A prison can feel like a comfort in the wake of the unknown, but to walk ahead is the only way to feel the full benefit of your freedom. Lindsey has made no secret of her past struggles with an eating disorder and allows her fans to attach themselves to her by marking out the similarities between all insecurities – the most powerful trait in an artist in my opinion!
What have you guys been loving these past few months? Have you tried any of the things I’ve mentioned today? Also, are there any other Lindsey Stirling lovers out there reading this?? If you have any natural skincare recommendations for sensitive skin please let me know if the comments below!
Talk to you guys soon!
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