Saturday, 4 January 2014

Battle of the Micellars

We all know beauty rule number one is to never sleep in your make-up, for years I thought sweeping a baby wipe across my face and pulling out my falsies was enough, but who was I kidding? I'd awake in the morning to parched, red, blotchy and altogether crap skin. I realised this had to change and over time have been a little kinder to my face and developed  more of a routine when it comes to removing the face cake -yes girls that means even after too many Woo Woo's on a night out! I first came across Micellar water a couple of years ago at work, I worked for a company which manufactures toiletries and cosmetics and was sent comp shopping to buy Vichy thermale 3 in 1 Micellar Solution to benchmark against. I'd never tried it but was intrigued. I liked the sound of the formulation and so gave it a whirl myself. I honestly have never looked back.
Micellar Waters are different to general cleansers in that they leave something behind,  give something back to your hard working complexion after removing the days troubles. They are non rinse formulations which is great for quickness and I have to say they seem to work fantastically for my dry/sensitive skin type. They are chemical free and still remove even the toughest of eye make up at the end of the day. 

Of course there are now many many other brands providing their own versions of this magic water all at different price points. The L'Oreal Micellar Solution is one of the cheaper offerings at only £3.49. I find this one removes my make up with ease whilst toning too -Brucey bonus! However although for sensitive skin I find it a fair bit harsher than others that I've tried. It doesn't leave my face as moisturised as say the other  two but that's just personal preference, it didn't harm my skin at all and did a good job at what it was supposed to do, this I'd use when my skin is feeling good and not in an uber sensitive state, for most skin types it'd be fabulous. Hell at £3.49 I shouldn't really complain.

My favourite out of the three has to be the Vichy Purete Thermale 3 in 1 calming cleansing micellar solution, it retails at £11. This not only performs brilliantly but also smells like cucumber, so calming and feels like angels kissing your skin ..ok tad overboard there but I friggin' love this stuff! It leaves skin feeling clean, pure and moisturised. I never have a problem using it when my skin has gotten a  little angry, no stinging, dryness or sensitivity, it is my go to cleanser and I can't get enough of it.

Finally we have perhaps the original Micellar water, this is the Bioderma offering, I always opt for the Hydrabio version as is specific for my skin type (dry, sensitive bla bla blaahh). This formulation is said to be 'ultra mild'  and 'locks in moisture' both statements of which I whole heartedly agree. This product is the daddy of all cleansers if you are a sensitive Sally like myself, it isn't quite so tough at removing make up as quickly as say the L'Oreal or Vichy, but it does the job well but with a much more pleasant user experience. I will always keep a bottle of this handy for those times when my skin is upset and in need of a bit of pampering. On really bad days, I sometimes use this just to inject a bit of life back into my poorly complexion. You can get your hands on a 250ml bottle for £7.99 and it lasts ages.

Have you tried any Micellar waters? Which brands are your favourite?

Love Hammy x

New year, new thinking

So 2014 is upon us, we're all thinking about New Years resolutions, reflect on 2013 and plan to make the next 365 days better than the last. If I'm perfectly honest, I'm no longer a massive NYR kind of girl, I mean I totally get the concept and was once somebody that would think long and hard about what I'd change going forward and that at the stroke of midnight everything would be different. A couple of years ago I made a general one, one that would span all future resolutions.  It was in fact a recent tagline of well known blogger/vlogger Zoella. It was simply to 'just say yes'. For many of the reasons that Zoe actually explains extremely well in her video HERE. I was fed up of turning down offers of going to places, seeing people,  dates etc.  I started instead to think,  'how will I feel once I've done...(said task, meeting etc) and if the answer was remotely positive then I would accept the invitation. Now this rule doesn't apply to EVERYTHING,  you're smart, you know yourself and also need to think if it'll affect others too. Following this new guideline has given myself the green light to travel to Australia solo, skydive,  snorkel the Great Barrier Reef, run a half marathon, meet a tonne of people from all over the world, and to generally have awesome times with great memories to look back on with a cheesy grin.
Personally,  for me, I feel that although I would always be keen to start a new healthy lifestyle in the new year, be more active,  eat healthier etc, I found that if I wasn't willing to start said lifestyle in the middle of the year, on a Thursday at 4pm, then why would the new year be any different?  If I want to do something I'll start it when it enters my head as a good idea and not wait until a new year, month, week or even day. No time like the present eh? Let's grab 2014 by the goolies and make the most of every opportunity presented to us. You with me?
Have you made any New Years resolutions? Do you stick to them? Let me know :)
Love Hammy x

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

#OOTN | Dinner with the girls (+ boys)

Hey guys, I thought I'd do a little OOTN from the other night when I went to dinner with some of my gorgeous friends. We all used to work together and I hadn't seen them for a couple of months so it was really nice to catch up. We brought the boys along too although bit of a touchy subject as I forgot to invite my other half as assumed it was a girls only kind of gig. Ooops must remember to read messages properly in future. He came along albeit a little last minute anyway and fun was had by all. We ate at AQUA, a stunning Italian restaurant in Bath, the food was beautiful and the service great too, I shall definitely be back to sample other delights from the menu very soon. You can check out their website here.

Apologies for the image quality, the photo's were taken in very bad light, on my phone, in the bathroom once we had returned from the restaurant. You can hopefully get the general idea though.

What I wore:
Muubaa leather black 'Cion' jacket
Primark black racer back vest
Next black/nude lace effect leggings
Topshop long pointed necklace
Topman Lusardi London 'Crown chain' necklace
Mac 'Rebel' lipstick
StylistPick black shoe boots (not shown) 

Friday, 29 November 2013

Reasons why we shouldn't buy the Naked 3

                                                       Image credit

Now ladies, let's just calm down a minute, the blogosphere has gone batsugar crazy for Urban Decay's latest offering ever since a couple of photos appeared a month or two ago. Some doubted and deemed the pics fake, but now released in the US with a palette being sold every SECOND (whattt?!) things seem to be looking rosey for the pending UK release date of 16th December 2013.

An avid UD eyeshadow fan myself I was hasty in 'bigging up' the pink toned neutral goodies from photos alone. Now that people have been able to get their mitts on them, swatch and review, it has given me a little time to relax about the whole situation.

Now of course, if somebody were to present me with the Naked 3 palette for Christmas then yes, I would possibly let out a little squeal ..and perhaps a bit of wee. I'm sure it is fabulous and capable of creating beautiful looks. BUT, back in the real world, I spent £37 on the Naked 2 and although I like it a lot, it has great quality and I get a lot of use out of it, it really hasn't changed my life. I already owned the MUA dupe in 'Heaven and Earth' (link here) and love that thing, and it only cost me £4! I'm possibly more excited for the myriad of dupes that are no doubt going to hit us in the new year, from MUA and other fabulous budget brands.

It also slightly concerns me that the number 3 isn't the end of the Naked palette line from UD, what's next? Blue toned neutrals? Grey? Olive? At £37 a pop can we afford to keep up with this? Also how awesome is it to try out other brands? Let's not be blinkered here girls, let's ride the wave, hit drugstores and swatch away until our hearts content. You never know, you could stumble across a gem or two?

If you can resist the hype then hang on in there, be strong, we can do this!

Have you been lucky enough to receive a Naked 3 palette? Worth the hype? Have you come across any awesome dupes yet? Let me know :)

Monday, 25 November 2013

21 random facts about me

So I figured this would be a slightly lighter post compared with my last efforts, here goes:

1. I work in the city of Bath and absolutely love it, it's so pretty.
2. Last year skydived from 14,000 feet!
3. I have a pony called Biscuit and have had her since she and I were 12 years old, she's my fave person ever.
4.  I was born in Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire and lived there until a few years ago when I moved to the country.
5. Disaronno and diet coke is my drink of choice.
6. I used to go to break dance classes.
7. I am short, although I tell people that I am 5'4'' -it is questionable..
8. My dogs are my world.
9. I buy make up and beauty products more often than I should, damn you MAC.
10. I will run the Bath Half Marathon 2014.
11. My favourite high street stores are H&M, Zara, Urban Outfitters and Topshop (standard), oh and Primark!
12. I love my Samsung Galaxy S4 and would never sell out to an iPhone.
13. I have two guinea pigs called Guinea and Whinnie.
14. I once helped castrate, de-tail, inject and ear tag 167 lambs in the Outback in Australia.
15. My boyfriend and I are currently living in the dining room of my parents house whist the sale of our house goes through. *AWK*
16. I am cold all of the time.
17. Two books that changed my outlook on life are 'Eat, Pray, Love' and 'The Secret'.
18. I have an older sister, she is a nurse and therefore -favourite child.
19. It took me SIX attempts to pass my driving test, sixth time lucky and all that..
20. I actually enjoy flossing my teeth.
21.  I recently went on a ten day juice diet, I lasted 36 hours. Impressive!

That's all for now folks. :)


Stupid skin

Hey hey, now apologies in advance, this isn't a tutorial, or haul or monthly make up faves post. Unfortunately not everything in life is utter perfection. Today this post is a little different, I'm going to talk about my skin issues, woes and dealing with eczema. It seemed like a good time as today I am in fact off sick from work for that very reason ..eczema.

Forgive me if this becomes a slightly negative post, as I said this is affecting me today so I am very much 'in the moment' with regards to my stupid skin. I guess this is as honest as you are likely to get though so probably not the worst thing in the world.

It's strange, I feel awkward phoning in sick for a skin complaint, I mean eczema is a little rash that kids get isn't it? It's supposed to disappear by the time you reach your teens right? Apparently not. Mine has seemed to stay with me for the duration, don't get me wrong, it comes and goes, some days I wake up to perfectly smooth skin, not so much as a freckle, but others -like today for perfect example is very different. I can usually feel when it is going to rear it's ugly head. Last Friday my skin was feeling a little sensitive, cold and when getting into the bath it was actually a little painful and took a good while until I could settle in. Over the weekend it seemed extremely dehydrated and started to get a little patchy, until last night (Sunday) I was in a bath of oil for over two hours waiting for it to feel more comfortable -it never did. I got out and wanted to cry, it's hard to explain, inside I was freezing cold but my skin was clammy, hot and very sweaty. Wearing anything other than a bikini and baggy t shirt would feel like rope burns, but all over my body, the stinging most definitely not helped by the scratching that naturally comes with having an itchy skin condition. To look at my skin is very patchy almost looking like hives, the patches are bright red and slightly raised, this is from head to toe (although I am generally very lucky that it doesn't affect my face all that much).

I have spent many an hour in the doctors waiting room and at first found it hard to accept that it was just eczema. I'd leave with yet another prescription with six or seven ointments, bath oils, steroids, steroid creams, antibiotics  etc and expected to just get on with it until the next time when it would all happen again. I'm still not entirely convinced that this is the most effective treatment and would much prefer not to be taking steroids or steroid creams on a regular basis as these can be extremely damaging and thin out the skin considerably. Most importantly I want it to be manageable so that I do not have to take time off of work for something that I'm sure I going to happen again and again. I have now twice been signed off of work for this reason once for a two week period when it got all infected -fabulous times eh?

Of course if you can figure out what is triggering your condition then you are half way there, I'm still trying to figure mine out, but keeping hydrated as much as possible with the mighty H2O goes a long way in skin health or general heath for that matter. If you struggle with skin complaints then drinking water is a simple way of helping yourself out a little (NOTE: This is not a cure, but has been proven to assist in helping the body repair itself).

I realise that there are many many worse conditions out there and am fully aware of how lucky I am in so many other aspects of my health and life for which I am truly thankful, however, sometimes it's good to get things out in the open and talk about things that we may wish to hide from others because we are embarrassed, or think that nobody will understand or be able to relate to.

We all have our 'quirks' and differences and things sent to try us will determine the people we become in later life. That's a bit deep but I'm sure you understand where I'm coming from. Let's just be honest about things bothering us so that we can learn to deal with them, help each other through and hopefully move on to great things. :)

Do you have anything that you want to get off your chest? Feel free to let it all out in the comments below or send me an email :)


Wednesday, 18 September 2013

The 'Everything' Boot

I finally found them, after searching high and low, trawling the internet, magazines and the high street I am now the proud owner of THEE perfect ankle boots. I know there are tonnes out there, but I had a little boot vision, one in which I could do 'everything' in my new footwear, work, shop, party, stroll, you name it these boots could do it, all in the same day if required. Skirts, jeans, dresses, tights, no tights, dress up, dress down WHATEVER the occasion these boots are ready. Personally, I'm in love with them (can you tell?..) and the best part? Only £29.99 from H&M