My September Favourites 2017

Hola, It’s been a while since I’ve uploaded and I can only apologise. Quite a bit has happened the last month or so, including working on a farm for a month, starting a new job at a print house and attempting to plan out my future. Since I’ve been away I’ve gained a whole new collection of items I’ve been loving, so here they are.

BEAUTY

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty, Class Act mascara £20 Marks & Sparks

I unfortunately lost my Eyeko Black Magic Mascara which I absolutely LOVED. I actually wanted to replace that exact mascara, but when I popped back into M&S to grab it, that particular store didn’t stock it. I was desperate for a mascara so had to pick up anything I could which is why I ended up with this little gem. I don’t know if it’s as good as the Eyeko mascara, but it’s not bad. The consistency isn’t too thick which is fantastic as I like to layer it up. It also stimulates growth action, promotes lash thickness and adds an extra 1mm growth in a month. Whilst my natural lashes aren’t yet looking like falsies, I believe that this mascara is a lovely little product and the packaging makes me feel like I’m in 60’s glamour dressing room.

p.s. this product stings if it runs into your eyes, so if you are a big crier maybe avoid this on

Neal’s Yard, Honey & Orange Facial Scrub £18 Neal’s Yard

If you read My July Favourites 2017, you’ll remember that it was heavily skin care based. Having rather troublesome skin means I’m always on the hunt for new remedies, foods and products to help clear the bugger up. I believe I showed you my Body Shop range of skin care but I have come to the conclusion that those products were too harsh and ladled with chemicals. I soon ditched them and hit up my natural care stores. Neal’s Yard products are very expensive but I always, always find that they are worth it. This particular facial scrub smells divine. It helps to clear my skin without irritating it which is hard to find in an exfoliator

Ultrabland Facial Cleanser, Lush

Now this is my holy grail. I use this at least once a day, but I try to use it in the morning and the evening. It is incredibly gentle and helps to clear my skin whilst also moisturising. On the label it says that over time it helps to balance out the skin to prevent acne.

TUNES

Whilst I’ve found plenty or new artists and albums including; The Internet, Buddy, Tyler The Creator etc, there’s one song that I’ve had on repeat since I found it:

Electric Feel by Henry Green

This song really makes me slow down and think.

READS

I finally purchased Rupi Kaur’s milk and honey! And I love it! I couldn’t have purchased it at a more relevant time. I’ve flicked through it every evening since I bought it and I cannot wait for her next book to arrive.

You may also know that I love Tuesday’s with Morrie by Mitch Albom, well I stumbled across his other book The Five People You Meet In Heaven on my travels. I, of course had to buy it immediately. I will let you know how amazing it is once I’ve read it.

THREADS

My favourite piece of clothing has to be my big red puffa from UO. It was quite expensive, but so worth it. It honestly feels as though I’m wearing a duvet. What more could you want on your ice cold morning commute to work?

My other favourite has to be my black corduroy pinafore dress also from UO. Paired with either a plain tee or a sweater or even a nice shirt, this staple can be dressed up or dressed down for a warm, autumnal day look.

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Natural Health

So this is something quite a lot of people in my life don’t understand.

I like to follow a more holistic and natural approach to my health.

When I have a head ache, or just don’t feel right I never reach for the overly-used ibuprofen or paracetamol. I only take pharmaceutical drugs when I’m in too much pain to handle (which thankfully isn’t very often at all). Instead I like to reduce it with natural products or just bear through the pain. This is when people often remark; “Why don’t you just take a tablet? Why suffer?”.

I believe that pharmaceutical drugs only cover the symptoms, and don’t actually address what’s causing the problem. Surely the symptoms will only keep on arising as long as the root of your pain isn’t addressed?

Here’s an example; I class caffeine as a drug. It affects our body when consumed. So the other day I was feeling incredibly lethargic. At work I could hardly keep my eyes open and no matter how much I slept, I was exhausted. When I mentioned this a lot of people just said “Have a cup of coffee”. I understand that this will improve my symptoms right now, but once it wears off I will be right back at square one. I picked up on some other symptoms such as bruising easily and paler lips. I knew that I was lacking iron. I went straight to the ol’ trusty Holland & Barrett and picked up some iron vitamins. Within a day my symptoms had been abolished. Completely resolved. I now knew to consume more iron rich food (dark chocolate here I come). Instead of covering over my tiredness with caffiene, I cured my lethargy completely.

I picked up 100 15mg Iron tablets from Holland & Barrett for £7.59. They also include small doses of other vitamins and minerals such as; Vitamin C, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, and many more.

Here are a couple more natural products I’ve been loving lately.

Evening Primrose Oil. This stuff is great for reducing PMS and helping to balance out hormones. I bought this from Neil’s Yard for £9.50. Incredibly expensive considering you only get 30ml. I actually ran out the other day so I’ve got to re-splurge, definitely somewhere cheaper though that’s for sure. This is a great alternative to other hormone based medicine such as the contraceptive pill (for balancing hormones that is, not protection against pregnancy).


Green Rooibos tea. This was a complete random buy as it was on offer for £1 in, you guessed it, Holland & Barrett. Tea is fantastic for clear skin, a clear mind, and a hydrated body. Rooibos tea is actually made from an African bush so isn’t technically a tea. It is known for its abilities to clear up skin, reduce stress and even fight cancer. Although it’s not known if it’s actually better than green tea, it’s a great little mix up if your daily green tea is getting rather repetitive. I imagine the pure Rooibos loose tea leaves are even better, give it a try. Maybe this could reduce your need for anti-anxiety medication or skin-clearing medicine.
So what’s the point of this blog post? Well hopefully I’ve inspired you to question your drug taking. Instead of just popping pills and thinking nothing of it, question if there’s something different you could do that’s better for you, your mind, and better ethically. Taking a few minutes to research online about your symptoms and any natural cures is definitely worth a try.

Let me know of any natural medication you take.

Edit:

I purchased this cold-pressed evening primrose oil from Holland & Barrett for £23.99. Yes, very expensive. But, I am getting 120ml rather than 30ml. All in the name of health hey?

No Importance

What other’s see of you visually is of no importance.

What you see of yourself visually, is again, of no importance.

The features you were born with are irrelevant.

They do not equal your worth or your happiness.

They simply help others differentiate you from other’s.

They help the people who want your company, your love and your laughter, to find you.

These people know you as what counts.

Your soul, your energy and your impact on their lives.

These are immaterial parts of your being.

Others can’t see them with their eyes, and neither can you.

Humankind can’t see loyalty, friendliness or selflessness.

We see a body that simply holds these characteristics.

The characteristics that everybody loves so deeply.

Remove from your mind any thoughts about your optical anatomy.

You are wasting your time.

Replace them with valuable thoughts, questions and dreams.

Make room for goals that can be achieved.

Goals that add to your happiness and identity.

Because you are capable of so much more than your aesthetics.

Aesthetics are of no value, and you are incredibly valuable.

Who you are is what can’t be seen,

And everything else is of no importance.

– Victoria Howell

Squash, Coconut & Chilli Curry (v)

This recipe is from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s cook book ‘Hugh’s THREE GOOD THINGS’. I have made this recipe numerous times and it is most definitely one of my favourite dishes. This is down to how easy it is to make (except the tedious task of cutting up the butternut squash), how cheap it is to make, the fact that it is pretty damn healthy in my eyes, and of course, that fact that it’s vegan.

Ingredients (Serves 4…or 2 servings for myself):

  • 800-1 kg butternut squash
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil (I personally hardly ever cook with oil, instead I fry vegetable with small amounts of water and keep topping it up whenever needed)
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 2-4 red chillies, deseeded and diced
  • 1 good tablespoon or to taste of curry powder or paste 
  • 400 ml tin coconut milk
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Your preference of rice, my favourite is jasmine

Image result for squash coconut chilli curry

First, peel the squash and remove all the seeds. You then want to cut it up into small-ish chunks. Next, get your large saucepan (it’s going to hold the whole curry) ready and fry up your sliced onion on a medium-low heat. Keep this going for around 10 minutes and then add the sliced garlic and chillies. Allow these guys to fry for a couple more minutes. Once you think they’re fried enough, stir in your curry powder/paste and let it all cook together for a couple minutes. Next, throw in your cut up squash with some salt and pepper to your tasting. Stir the contents together making sure the the squash is coated in your just-made curry sauce. Let this cook for 2 or so minutes.

Now, your going to pour in whole contents of your coconut milk tin and stir it all together. Then bring this to a simmer. Once you’ve got your curry bubbling, you;re going to put on the saucepan lid, and let it gently cook for 20-25 minutes making sure to stir it every now and then. You’re aiming for the squash to be tender and yielding (not mushy).

Once the squash has finished cooking, taste the curry and add any seasoning if needed.

Ladle your curry into your bowl accompanied with any type of rice, breads or dips.

Enjoy.