Guest Post: Organic Make Up | Chic & Smart

Today’s post is another guest post!
The lovely Peter Minkoff contacted me a couple of weeks ago about featuring on my blog and after reading some other articles that he’s written, I couldn’t decline!
I don’t write much about make up as like I’ve said before I’m not very experienced in make up, so I was more than happy for write a post on make up!
Enjoy!

cover organic makeup

One of the hottest topics today is the green initiative: eliminating all toxic and environmentally threatening objects from our lives and turning to natural solutions. A few year ago, there was a wave of new consciousness about the importance of organically grown crops and today we’re witnessing another wakeup call – whether or not is our personal hygiene threatened by synthetic products? Are organic beauty products healthier for us?
The first thing we need to determine is: what does organic exactly stand for? The American Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) doesn’t have a unified formulation of organic cosmetics. As it is stated on their website: FDA regulates cosmetics under the authority of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act) and the Fair Packaging and Labeling Act (FPLA). The term “organic” is not defined in either of these laws or the regulations that FDA enforces under their authority. So, what does organic mean today?

How it’s made

Organic produce is made entirely from naturally grown ingredients. If a label states that a product is 100% organic it means that all ingredients (excluding water and salt) are organic; if it says that the product is organic that means that 95% of the ingredients have to be organically produced, while the rest has to be approved by USDA (US Department of Agriculture); if the label says that the product is made with organic materials that means it must contain at least 70% organic ingredients and the label can list up to three of the organic ingredients or “food” groups on the principal display panel. However, an organic product does not automatically mean that it is safe for your skin. That depends on the ingredient structure.

What is it made from (and what to avoid)

organic soap

Have you ever read the ingredients list of your most common toiletry? Could you understand at least two of the many complex formulas? The thing is – if you can’t pronounce it, it’s probably synthetized in a lab. That wouldn’t be a problem if those ingredients weren’t linked with various cancers (most commonly skin and breast). One such ingredient is polytetrafluoroethylene. Doesn’t seem familiar? How about Teflon®? Ah yes, this non-stick ingredient found in blushes and foundations has been associated with delayed menstruation, later breast development and cancer. The same goes for parabens (linked to breast cancer), phthalates (potentially harmful to the reproductive system) and talc (linked to ovarian cancer). Avoiding these ingredients will lower the risk of dangerous diseases.

Make a smart choice

Is the situation so hopeless that we can’t trust anyone with our beloved makeup items? Not all hope is lost, there are a few names in the industry that stay true to the organic business model. First of all, you should shorten your list of cosmetic must-haves. I tend to stick to the essentials: a black-tea based mascara, a jojoba oil based lipstick (with natural fruit dye) and, of course, an organic naked palette ideal for ultra-precise contouring. You could introduce a blush and perhaps a concealer to this set, but this should be enough to make you shine like a star.

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DIY alternatives

Besides a few chosen brands that still keep the organic values afloat, you could put in an effort to make your own makeup in your very own kitchen. For example, for a simple foundation you would need the following ingredients: arrowroot powder as base and one or a combination of cocoa powder, ground cinnamon and/or nutmeg. Depending on your tone of skin, you should experiment with the amount of pigmented ingredients. You can find all sorts of DIY recipes for mascaras and lipsticks online. It’s the safest, healthiest and cost-efficient makeup concept.

As you can see, there is a way to remain trendy, keep your chic style and still preserve nature by lowering health hazards in your basic skincare.

Peter is a fashion enthusiast and an editor for HighStyleLife magazine located in Brisbane, Australia.
After graduating from Australian Institute of Creative Design, he worked as a trend forecaster and a stylist for few fashion events in Brisbane. Besides writing, he loves cooking exotic meals and making DIY cosmetics. He plans to create his own business for beauty and style advising.

Thank you so much to Peter for getting in touch with me to feature on my blog.
I love featuring guest posts as I think it gives my readers a little versatility in what they read on my blog!
If you’d like to feature on my blog then you can find out how to contact me in my Contact/PR section.

You can find allow of Peter’s links below!
Twitter | Google Plus | Facebook

Lets Talk: Mental Health

Today I wanted to talk about mental health and more specifically my journey with my mental health.
Before I go any further, I’d just like to note that I have never had any medical diagnosis, which is something I’ll explain in this post.
I’d also like to put a disclaimer out there. I am not doing this for any sympathy, I wanted to write this to hopefully help others and let you know that it does get better and it is always worth carrying on.

Photo credit: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bobbie-brinegar/2015-could-be-the-year-fo_b_8016452.html

[photo credit: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bobbie-brinegar/2015-could-be-the-year-fo_b_8016452.html]

With that in mind, I can’t outrightly say I have anxiety as like I say I haven’t been medically diagnosed with the disorder, however I was told by the psychologist at school that I did have it.

For me, it all started in Year 10, I specifically remember my first panic attack.
I was sitting in morning assembly and as the assembly was going on I suddenly started to feel like the room was shrinking around me, I was shivering but also sweating, it felt like someone was standing on my chest and I felt like I might pass out.
I didn’t know what was happening me, I just wanted to get out of the assembly and that’s all I could think about, then for some reason I decided to go to my first lesson (still not sure why I done that!), however after 5 minutes of still feeling like that I asked to see the school nurse and practically ran out the room.
I think I sat with the nurse for about an hour, trying to calm myself down, still not really sure what was happening to me. I felt completely drained and sick, which I think was due to my body having a panic attack, so I was sent home.
Throughout Year 10 I had panic attacks now and then, mainly at school, I started to realise after a while that that’s what was happening when this ‘thing’ was happening to me.

Things then got worse in Year 11, I’m not sure why, but I started not wanting to leave my house, I’d be ‘ill’ multiple times a week to avoid school as much as I could, I’d cry most days when I did go to school.
Because of this I lost two of my best friends and went completely into myself, however, thank fully my best friend Jenni who I’ve known since year 7, always stuck with me through it and has always been my rock.
I also had an a amazing amount of support from one of my teachers who I genuinely adored.
I cried to him first of all because I failed a mock exam in a subject he taught me and I felt really bad because he’d been such a good teacher and I just wanted to do well.
From then on, I would always talk to him if I was feeling down or go to him if I was having a panic attack, as although he wasn’t a councillor, I felt like I could talk to him about everything, I’d spend most lunch times with him because I was scared to be anywhere that my two ex best friends were.
Again, through Year 11 I had sporadic panic attacks, although more than I did in Year 10.

Then, in Year 12, my ‘anxiety’ reached it’s peak.
I was having panic attacks almost everyday, sometimes multiple times a day, in fact, I was lucky if I didn’t have a panic attack once a day. Again, this was almost only at school (sixth form by this time), although there was the random panic attack at weekends.
I made a huge mistake in the beginning of Year 12 and isolated myself from everyone other than my niece.
We’d spend our lunches in the study room as we were both too scared to go into the ‘common room’ where everyone else was – for some reason, I don’t know why, but I was genuinely scared of all the people I’d been to school with since Year 7. I really wish I knew what it was that scared me because then maybe I’d have been able to get over it quicker and face my fears.
I also wish now, that I had just forced myself to go into the common room and socialised with everyone and not let anxiety get the better of me.
Around this time I was afraid to be alone, to the point my niece moved into my house so I was never alone – which I could never say thank you enough for.
I would cry every single day, about how I hated myself, the way I looked, the fact I felt like a failure, the way I’d gone downhill and lost friends, I was just a very emotional person (still am haha).
If I’m completely honest, there were many times I wanted/contemplated ending my life, only a couple of people actually know that.
Again, that certain teacher helped me a lot, I was always allowed to go to him whenever I felt s**t and my sixth form were actually very understanding of my situation, I’d only have to give a look to most of my teachers and they’d know that I was asking to leave the room.
This peak in my ‘anxiety’ lasted from September 2014 to November/December 2014, then around Christmas and New Year I just had a realisation that I needed to suck it up and just get over myself.
Throughout the rest of Year 12 I’d have occasional panic attacks, maybe once a week until I slowly stopped having them, until it came to my AS Levels where I had a panic attack in 2 of my exams.

Year 13 things were much better, mainly because I learnt how to deal with my panic attacks and stop them getting completely out of control.
I still couldn’t bring myself to go into the common room but I made new friends who didn’t go in there much anyway.
My A Levels came and went and I didn’t suffer any panic attacks which was good.
I left Sixth Form last August feeling in a much better and happier place. I wasn’t scared to be alone anymore, I didn’t feel ill all the time, I didn’t hate myself and I generally just felt like a different person.

One thing I’ve never understood about my ‘anxiety’ is the way in which I feel it.
It was always at school and around people I’d known for years. I never got anxious going out (apart from for a little bit in Year 11) or meeting new people, don’t get me wrong I’m quite shy and do struggle to talk to new people, but I’m also a relatively confident person. I can speak to strangers easily, it’s not something that scares me, I can go out and be in crowded places and it doesn’t scare me.
Like I say, I just never understood why I got this anxiety and the situations I seemed to suffer in.

Now, I feel like a completely different person.
I could never imagine being the way I was at school, it was a big lesson for me and in a way, taught me a lot about dealing with life.
I still occasionally feel panicky, a few months ago I had a full blown panic attack when I was trying to get to sleep, it was perhaps one of the worst ones I’d ever had and I’d known all week that it was coming. I could feel it building up inside me all week then once it happened I felt fine.
I’m still an emotional person, although not angry/anxious emotional like I used to be, more emotional where I look at a dog and think it’s so cute it brings me to tears – I’m not even exaggerating… haha.
However, I feel extremely happy and content in my life, surrounded by people I love.

Just to clear things up, the reason I never went to get a medical diagnosis was because I was scared.
Although I basically knew that I was suffering from anxiety, I never wanted to admit it, through fear of being seen as a failure – which may I say, having a mental illness does not make you a failure!
I also wanted to study to become a psychologist and I thought if I went to the doctors and had it put on my record that I had anxiety, I wouldn’t be allowed to go into that profession.
Do I wish I’d gone to the doctors? Possibly.
Just to know that I wasn’t going crazy and that I did actually have anxiety and I wasn’t just saying/thinking it.

Here are a couple of things I’ve learnt:
You have to want to get better.
This is something I didn’t realise for a long time, until one day I literally woke up and said to myself that I did not want to deal with this anymore so I was going to kick it’s ass.
The only person who can help you is you.
At the end of the day, it’s your mind and your body, you need to be willing to change and improve in order to do so.
You need to stop feeling sorry for yourself.
I know this sounds horrible but I was in a state of feeling sorry for myself and I expected others to feel sorry for me too.
However you cannot be like this, why should others feel sorry for you and what good is it to feel sorry for yourself?
Just get up and fight that bitch that’s anxiety!

Yes it is hard t0 get through it and at times you will probably feel like giving up but don’t do that!
You can and you will get through it no matter how bad you’re currently feeling.
It’s also okay to have bad days, the bad comes with the good and you can’t expect to feel amazing 100% of the time.

If this helps just one person out there I will be happy.
If you ever need any help, I’ll always be happy to help and I hope you find your peace soon!

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Wednesday Wants | Week 2

I have another Wednesday Wants today!
I’ve decided to post one of these every other week rather than every week.
I love writing these posts as it gives me an excuse to look through the internet at all the things I want to buy, ha ha.

Nike Juvenate
The first thing I really want this week and will definitely be purchasing in the next few weeks are these pair of Nike trainers.
They’re the Nike Juvenate’s which I think look really nice for casual wearing rather than wearing to the gym. They’re quite similar to the Nike Roshe’s which I already have a pair of – which I do actually wear to the gym.
I’m going to Amsterdam in April which means I’m going to be doing lots of walking around for the weekend so I really want a pair of comfy, casual trainers that I can walk about in all weekend.
I think these are the perfect pair and I cannot wait to purchase them soon.

Nike Juvenate

ASOS Cable Beanie
I’ve never been much of a hat person, however recently, my boyfriend and I have been going on long walks at the weekend and the weather has been quite chilly at times, especially on my ears where I don’t have a hat!
So I’ve been thinking about how I’d really like a nice cable hat with a massive bobble on it to wear when we’re going for these walks.
I spotted one in Urban Outfitter’s a few weeks ago, but stupidly didn’t decide to pick it up, then when I went to find it online it wasn’t there anymore so whoops!
But I did find this one on ASOS which I quite like too so I might purchase this one if I can’t find the Urban Outfitters one in store.

asos cable beanie

Naked Palette 3
If you know me you’ll know that I’m not the best at make up, I only ever wear ‘proper’ make up when I’m on a night out or if I’m going out for a nice day, which isn’t even once a week! On a normal day I only wear mascara and eyebrow gel as I don’t really see the point in wearing make up every day.
However, I do really want a Naked Palette, especially the Naked 3 as I think the colours would be the best for my skin tone.
I really do want to start getting better at doing my make up, especially eyeshadow, mostly for when I go for a night out.
If I don’t purchase this myself soon, I’ll probably ask for it for my birthday in April!

naked palette 3

Zoeva Rose Gold Set
Another make up item I’m desperate to get is this Zoeva brush set.
I’ve heard so many good reviews about these brushes and I think they’re so pretty, plus, I definitely need some new brushes asap!
I’ve honestly been wanting these since before Christmas, which you might have seen in my Christmas Wishlist, however I forgot to ask for them! Silly me.
Again, if I don’t purchase these for myself in the near future, then I’ll definitely ask for them for my birthday.

Zoeva Rose Gold Set

Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Contour Kit
Oh, would you look at that! There’s me talking about how I rarely wear make up and yet I’ve included 3 make up items in this Wednesday Wants, ha ha.
I love a bit of contour when I’m going on a night out, I always use a powder one, however I really want a cream contour kit.
I’ve heard lots of good reviews about the Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Contour Kit and I definitely want to purchase this soon!

Anastasia Beverly Hills Cream Contour Kit

Dumbo Sketch iPhone Case
Onto the last thing in this weeks Wednesday Wants which is this cute Dumbo iPhone case.
This is actually for an iPhone 6, I only have an iPhone 5s at the moment, however I’ll be getting an upgrade in April and I think I’m going to have to purchase this phone case!
If you didn’t know, I love elephants so much and although Dumbo isn’t my favourite Disney movie, getting this case would mean I can have a bit of Disney and Elephants with me at all times!

Dumbo Sketch iPhone Case

That’s it for this weeks Wednesday Wants!
What have you been wanting this week?
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My Current Music Favourites

I’ve been listening to a lot of music recently so thought it was only right I shared with you a few of my favourites this moment!

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I personally listen to music on Apple Music.
I trialled it out for 3 months and decided that I loved it enough to purchase it monthly.
I’d definitely recommend it if you’re willing to pay for the service, as you’re able to listen to as much music you want, even if you don’t have signal.
I like a complete range of music, so if you have any recommendations, definitely let me know!

My current favourites are (which will all be linked to the Youtube video that goes with it):

Major Lazer ft. Nyla & Fuse ODG – Light it Up
I like this song as it’s upbeat and makes me feel instantly happy when I listen to it.
It’s one of those songs that makes me want to go out partying with my friends!

Rihanna ft. Drake – Work
Again, I love this song as it makes me feel really upbeat but also chilled out at the same time, if that makes any sense?!
I love a bit of Drake so I instantly loved this song.

Jonas Blue ft. Dakota – Fast Car
I loved the original version of this song but I think I may love this version just a tiny bit more.
I feel like I’m just repeating myself here but it really is an upbeat song that makes me feel happy when I listen to it.
It’s also a good song to blast in the car – excuse the pun.

Flume – Smoke & Retribution
I absolutely adore Flume.
When I was going through a bad time at Sixth Form (thanks to my anxiety) Flume were all I listened to as I found them so calming as well as uplifting.
This is a classic Flume song and I’m sure I loved it before I even listened to it, haha.

Ellie Goulding – Army
Another artist I honestly adore is Ellie Goulding.
I think Ellie as a person is absolutely beautiful and her voice too is truly amazing to me.
I genuinely love everything Ellie releases and this song was no different.
This song is all about her friendship with her bestfriend and that speaks a lot to me as I’ve been freinds with my bestie since we were 12 – we’re both 18 now.
It speaks of all the things they’ve been through together and how together they’re an army which is exactly the same as Jenni and I – I love her a lot.

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – White Privilege II
I’m not sure what it is that I like about this song but whenever I listen to it I feel really calm.
The words are very powerful and it’s a great song when you listen to it.
I definitely think it should have much more popularity than it does.

Flume ft. Kai – Never Be Like You
I think this is my favourite song of all.
Like I said I love flume and this song is a song that I think I will love for a long time.
It makes me feel so happy and like I can do anything thrown at me even if I’m lacking the confidence in doing so!

Lukas Graham – 7 Years
Lastly, is this amazing song…
I honestly don’t have the words to describe how much I love this song – even if the Flume song is my favourite.
This song makes me feel both happy and sad, it’s a song that you could listen to when you’re in both of those moods.
There is something about the words in this song that feel like they really mean something to me.
It also reminds me of my niece who is my life time best friend and listening to it makes me wish I could see her every day!

That’s it for my current music favourites.
What songs have you been loving recently?

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Flashback: The Summer in Cornwall

The other day I was scrolling through my external hard drive looking at the pictures I’ve put on there as I have a habit of taking pictures then never really looking at them again.
I found lots of photos from last summer when I visited Cornwall for a week with my family and best friend, which I thought I’d share with you today.
We didn’t do too much as we wanted to just chill out and spend time together relaxing, also, we happened to go on a week that had especially bad British weather.

We did make it out a few days though.
Jenni and I would drive down to the high street (I guess you could call it?) and just browse round the shops. Jenni and I also went out to a bar one night for Jenni’s 18th Birthday, I think it was called Chi Bar, which was fun and I’d recommend going there if you visit Cornwall and fancy a night out – go on a Monday though as they have a night called Chi Mondays where the bar is more like a club.

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Then with my family we visited The Lost Gardens of Heligan which was absolutely beautiful.
It was a lovely and relaxing day walking round those gardens seeing all the different flowers, plants and statues, I especially liked the sleeping lady. Even if the weather was a bit drizzly, it was still a beautiful place to explore and I’d definitely recommend it if you’re looking for a day out which isn’t expensive and doesn’t require too much energy – although, take your own food as the food there cost a bomb.

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Every Brunette needs her Blonde best friend!

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Another place we visited was Lands End.
Yep, that’s right the end of the Land – of England of course.
We were luckily blessed with a very sunny day that day which made it even nicer being right by the sea.
Again, this is a beautiful place to visit and it is such a serene place to be.
Jenni and I must have spent at least half an hour to an hour just sitting on the rocks near the edge, watching the waves roll in and just chatting.
From Lands End we popped into a nearby town which unfortunately I can’t quite remember the name of.
However, it was a lovely little town with all the cobbled streets you’d imagine by the seaside and the small cute shops where you can pick up different gifts.

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It was a lovely week away with my family and best friend, I’d definitely go back to Cornwall for a relaxing holiday, even if the weather wasn’t great!

I hope you enjoyed reading this and seeing some pictures from my trip.
Have you ever visited Cornwall? If so, what did you think of it?

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