My Life

Checkpoint 5

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This check in is late I think…

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I honestly cannot figure out the timings of it. I’m pretty sure it’s late. It should have happened last month but November was otherwise engaged and so it has to open December, which is gonna be festive-ish I guess. I’m not a big Christmas person until it gets to about the 20th and then I’m over it come the 27th. That’s it, you kinda get festive me for about a week, but during that week I go hardLike, I wear a Christmas jumper every day and always buy a new one to wear on the day.

This is kind of festive themed I guess. I mean it’s terrifyingly reaching the end of the year and this is the time where people start looking back at what they had intended to do for the year and seeing whether they’ve achieved it or not. This isn’t quite closing out the whole year because I wrote it up when it was supposed to be written but have only just had an opening to post it, the final check in will come some time in January when I do a 2018 version of this, but this is the last comprehensive update of the year. So without further ado:

1) Take Better Care of My Hair – There’s not really much more that I can do with this one. I had my second haircut of the year back in July and I am due another one in January (hell yeah perks of having hair that only needs two haircuts a year). I continue to wash, condition and deep condition my hair each week. Which is arguably kind of pointless given that during this season so far (meaning winter) and the fact that I work out 5 times a week it spends most of its time tied up. But it remains moisturised and there is some length coming to it and it’s plodding along. Leave in conditioners are my friends and I’m always trying new shampoos and new hair masks. I’m kind of done with this one. It’s become a habit at this point.

2) Take Better Care of My Skin –  Okay, so I have moved away from Lush products since the last check in. This happened mainly so I could see what Glossier hype was all about. I’ve got a full post coming about this later this week but it’s come with a new cleanser, moisturiser and sunscreen. My skin is looking less oily which is good, but the breakouts are still there and I can’t quite figure out why they are happening. I really need to get back to cleaning my face with Dark Angels once a week again for an extra exfoliating kick mid week but I keep forgetting. I mean I’m not treating my skin badly or anything, it’s just decided to go through a second puberty.

3) Tone The Hell Up – Look at some point in October my diet fell to shit and for some reason it now ebbs and flows. I’m not beating myself up about or anything and I kind of make up for it by regularly working out and stuff so I don’t feel bad about it or anything, but I really need to start shaping up with that again. Diet is like half the battle with this one. The exercise is routine now. It happens 5 times a week, I do cardio twice a week, I lift once a week, I do some bodyweight stuff that is basically just planks and squats and I do barre because nothing burns quite like the barre burn. Physically I have baby biceps that come out to play now and I can lift weights now which is changing things slightly and like, I have the hints of abs and my legs are hella toned. Did I do that for the aesthetics? Hell no. I did it to get stronger, to get moving, to help cope with my every day stresses and just really sweat the day away. But the aesthetics of it isn’t a bad thing. We’re approaching Christmas at this point, and while I’m not going to go crazy I’m kind of not naive enough to think that I’m going to completely overhaul my diet in amongst alllll the food. So this will trickle over into a 2018 goal.

4) Start Saving Properly –  Look, this has not gone well this year. It just hasn’t. But I think this is good. It’s forced me to really assess the whole situation properly and truly look at better ways to be saving money and how to get everything under control. So yeah, this has failed. In so many damn ways. But it can only go up from here.

5) Get Better Organised – The diary I bought does get used. But again, it remains super sporadic. It’s habit that I’v never had before and trying to get into one is proving hard for me. I’m choosing Sundays as the day where I sit down and just plan things out. And then I need to keep referring to it. In a similar way to how I do a face mask every Sunday and go through the hair washing process on a Monday, I just need to form a habit of it. And I have the motivation for it, so it’s getting there.

6) Try And Be More Creative/Just Write More – I’ve learned this year that I need to not force this. I need to just let it do what it wants to do. And some days it wants to write 3,000 words in a day and others it wants to write 0. I need to learn to fall into this and not feel bad or feel like a failure when I don’t. I also need to not just let myself fall into a habit where I do not write anything for days on end. It’s just kind of frustrating the way it works, but I need to stop worrying about that. I also think that I am going to start making a habit of just writing for half an hour each night, and not just for this blog but outside of it. It’s just half an hour and yeah sometimes that half hour will fly by in a flurry or words and sometimes it won’t. I just need to roll with it and not fight it. My NaNo attempt was behind from day 2 and it sucked, but it wasn’t the end of the world and realising that lifted a huge weight that I hadn’t even known I was carrying.  So yeah, I have written more and I’ve also not, but this is a ongoing thing for me and I have written a lot of stuff so I consider it a win.

And that is the 5th and final full check in for my 2017 goals for the year. Some have been good, some have been truly ignored and nothing has come from them. Some of them are ongoing beyond just this year and this was just the foundation for them.

Parentheses count: 2. See you tomorrow!

 

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Beauty, My Life

Conditioners

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I’ve quite liked going a bit more in depth with some of my goals for the year. I did it last week with my skin care and I’ve gone on a bit about my exercise routine (which may actually need updating…or I might do another version…or something. We’ll see) and also how that has really helped to change my mindset and made me feel better about myself.

I have also done a couple of posts about my hair, because I have become one of those people that just will not stop talking about my hair. That mainly comes from the fact that I borderline hated it for most of my teen life and into my early 20s and now I finally love my hair. And I am going to continue in that vein again today and talk a little bit about my new best friend.

Conditioner.

The bathroom is heaving with a lot of my hair products these days (which means I am on a hair product buying ban until I’ve run them all down…) and most of them include the word ‘conditioner’ in some way. I’m a little obsessed. I like to know that my hair will be well moisturised at all times and with whichever product I happen to grab in the morning.

So, this is a list of all the ones I own and what I think of them.

Starting with the actual conditioners, there is only one that reigns supreme in my life and that is:

American Cream: This product is my everything. It’s so thick and creamy and it has great slip. It makes detangling my hair a total dream as I rake my fingers through it to get rid of all the major knots after a week of doing very little of that. It’s also super hydrating which is really good and makes a nice base to the deep conditioning mask that I then put on once I have rinsed this out. I used to find the smell a tad overwhelming. I mean it was nice but it always felt like a bit too much, but over time I got kind of used to it and it’s been something like a year now and I quite like the reassuring aroma that comes with flipping the lid come wash day. I finished this beloved product of mine yesterday and so it will not be in my life again until I finish my other conditioner.

Superdrug Hydrate and Shine Conditioner with Coconut Water: Which is this one. I’m gonna be honest, I’ve never actually used this conditioner as part of my wash day process. I bought it to take with me to Greece, one just in case I did need to go through the whole wash day process while I was out there and two to take with me to the beach and rake through my hair once I got out of the sea. Because the sea is dehydrating as hell and my hair likes moisture. So I used it for that, and it was my hair’s saviour, for real. It was hydrating and kept my curls in check in all their salt water drenched glory. I’ll find out on Sunday how it actually works in my wash day routine, but I imagine it will be fine.

And those are the conditioners. Onto the deep conditioners, for which I have many. An alarming amount. It almost overwhelms me how much choice I have when it comes to putting one in my hair. Most of these have instructions that say to leave them on for 15-20 minutes. I promptly ignore all of those and just leave them on my hair for hours. I tend to just rake them in, tie my hair up in a bun and live my life for a bit. Sometimes I run errands, sometimes I go work out, sometimes I just watch some stuff on Netflix. My hair doesn’t seem to mind it.

Superdrug Hydrate and Shine Conditioning Mask with Coconut Water – I think I’ve used this once so far. It was fine from what I remember of it, but it’s never been one that I reach for come Sunday when it reaches that time. Honestly, there is no real reason for this, I prefer others to it. Next weekend I’m going to finally use the whole Superdrug Coconut Water range for the first time in conjunction with each other (I own the shampoo as well) which will be a first for me.

Shea Moisture Jamacian Castor Oil Grow and Restore Masque: I love this mask a lot. It’s really thick and again has good slip which makes detangling a total dream. The smell is a bit odd. Sometimes I like it and sometimes I feel like it is a bit medicinal and sometimes it smells just fine. Also my hair drinks this stuff up so much so I use a lot of it, but even though I use loads in one go, the tub lasts for quite a while. But to be honest that may be because it takes me a while to cycle back around to it in amongst the others that I use.

Olive Oil Deeply Repairative Hair Pak: I always forget how good this stuff is to my hair. The slip is insane. It is so good at detangling my hair as a result of that. I used it yesterday and left in my hair for around 4 hours and as I was detangling with a wide tooth comb my curls looked so good and revitalised. So many of these masks are really thick and I like that. This one is also really light. I put so much of this stuff in my hair and you wouldn’t even really know until I was combing it out and it all starts to collect on my ends. It also smells really good and is very, very hydrating.

As I Am Hydration Elation Intensive Conditioner: I have slowly fallen harder and harder in love with As I Am these past couple of months. This deep conditioner is everything. Again, it’s so thick and my hair just drinks it up. The tub doesn’t look that big, but it has a solid 6/7 uses in it and that’s taking into consideration that I go real hard with the application of any and all deep conditioners. It coats my curls so well and again also has really good slip. I love anything that makes detangling easier. Bonus for this one, it smells ah-mazing which is in and of itself enough reason to totally love it. I think this one is my current fave, but I only have one treatment left of it, so I’m reluctant to pick it up because when I do it will be gone until I run out of them altogether…

Hask Monoi Coconut Oil Nourishing Deep Conditioner: This came in a sachet that I used the day I got back from Greece, because my hair was crying out to be washed as it had been over a week by that point. I picked up a couple of Hask deep conditioner sachets before I left just to throw one in my suitcase just in case a wash day was required. It wasn’t, but I had them and so I decided to give one a try. Oh my gosh, this product was incredible. I do not know if you’re supposed to get more than one treatment out of this sachet or not, maybe if your hair isn’t as thick as mine you can. I could not and so I squeezed every last but of product out of the sachet and let my hair soak that shit up. Which is exactly what it did, my hair on that particular day loved this product. It smelled amazing, didn’t feel too heavy and left my hair feeling so hydrated after a week in the sun, sea and sand. It was also very hydrating. I have a charcoal (surprise, surprise) one of these also knocking about my house somewhere which I am looking forward to trying just to see what that does to my hair and whether I will have found another charcoal product to add to my obsession…

Once I have detangled, rinsed the deep conditioner out and wrap it up in a micro fibre towel for about 10 minutes I then apply a leave in conditioner and tie it back in some kind of bun situation (sometimes I plait it). I then come back to leave ins on days when I cannot be bothered to wear my hair loose and need to know that my hair is still being moisturised while it is tied away out of sight. I’ve also ended up with a lot of these, and I have repurchased one of them because it is my absolute fave and also quite a key component to one of my styling methods so being without it was not an option.

As I Am Leave In Conditioner: This is the repurchase in question. It is so moisturising and so delightfully good to my hair. I have finally got the ratios right with this and the second styling product that I use (which is currently the As I Am Doublebutter Cream) which gives me perfect results each and every single time now and makes my hair look so good. This product is also great for when I just can’t be bothered, although I’ve been running low so I had to look at other products for that, which is why the repurchase was required. It also smells incredible. Like oranges, which I happen to like the smell of but I know not everyone does. It’s citrusy but not too in your face with it. It’s my fave.

Shea Moisture Jamaican Castor Oil Leave In Conditioner: I haven’t been reaching for this one as much recently, although I do still really love it. I think it just has a bit too much slip for day to day wearing for me and that means that if I put too much in by accident (which is easy to do when you scoop it out of the tub) it collects in my ends in a really big way and you have to spend more time removing all the white product out of the ends. Again also the smell is a bit hit and miss, I’m currently in a phase where this particular tub smells really chemically and not like the peppermint-ish smell that it previously has had. I’ll probably reach for this a bit more when a couple other of my go-to’s run out.

Shea Moisture Shea Detangler: This is a more recent purchase just so that I could give it a try. I don’t really know how I feel about it. On the one hand I do think that it is very moisturising and it’s great to put through my hair after I’ve gone through the whole washing process (which I did yesterday). I don’t feel like it helps with detangling anymore than other products I use. Also if it goes on slightly dry hair then it takes a while to soak into my hair and I spend a lot more time raking it through to make sure there are no white streaks then I would like to. The smell is nice and neutral though which I like and it leaves my hair feeling soft. I’ve used it in conjunction with another styling product once and hated the results so I may have to give that another try on hair that isn’t going on 10 days old.

R&B Hair Moisturiser: I gotta be honest, I forgot that I had this product until the other day when I remembered suddenly that it existed. I haven’t used it in so long. It’s just not one that I reach for all that often. I don’t even really remembered how it reacted in my hair. I know it used to do great things when my hair was really awful, but what it would do now? Haven’t a clue. I used to just coat my ends with it after the gym to keep a bit of hydration in it but it never really went beyond that. I mean, at some point I am going to have to return to it, but I think I just fell a bit out of love with it because at one point it was the only thing that worked in my hair and now there are so many other products that do such great things and so it’s fallen a bit behind.

Garnier Ultimate Blends Coconut Milk Dry Hair Mask: This is a 3-in-1 product that i have only every used as a leave in. It’s super nourishing, smells really good and is really thick. It doesn’t have too much slip which I guess is a by-product of the fact that it can also just be used as an outright hair mask, but that isn’t too much of a problem and I tend to just rake it through and then tie my hair up. This is a product that is best used when hair is damp, veering towards wet, as opposed to damp, veering towards dry as it applies better. Or at least it does in the case of my hair.

Garnier Ultimate Blends Coconut Sleek Restorer Balm: I think I impulsive bought this and I’m pretty sure it’s supposed to be used as a hair mask but it has the same consistency as the other one and so I use it as a leave in. It’s not my fave, it dries in my hair a bit weird and makes my curls feel crunchy, which is probably the strongest indicator that I should really rinse that shit out instead of leave it in for 24 hours at a time. It also doesn’t smell all that nice, which is weird because it has both cocoa butter and coconut oil in it and independently they both smell lush. I’m not gonna rush to repurchase it and I’m wondering why I did so in the first place.

And those are all (I think) the conditioning products that I currently own and where I stand on them. I’m currently running them all down and then sticking to a two of each rule only (except for with actual conditioners because we all know which one rules the roost there). And I say two of each because I need options and to make sure that my hair doesn’t get complacent and start getting unruly.

And also, I’ve just written nearly 2,500 words about conditioners, so congrats to you if you made it this far!

Parentheses count: 9. See you tomorrow!

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My Life

8 Month Point

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I spent an awful long time trying to figure out when the hell the next one of these was due. I think in total there should be 6 in the year if I do one every 2 months, so I think I have worked it out that one is due now, one in late October/early November and then one at the end of the year. I think. Honestly I cannot figure it out, but I’m gonna roll with that and pretend that I’m not truly atrocious at maths. So, here’s another check in.

1) Take Better Care of My Hair – I got a trim at the end of July just to keep it fresh (and also to encourage it to grow a bit, the fact that my hair seems to just hover at shoulder length when dry while it is boob length wet is a tad annoying to me right now, but I’m embracing the curls and all that jazz) and that is obviously to keep it as healthy as possible. I also deep condition it once a week and make sure that it is slathered in conditioner at all points to keep it hydrated and bouncy and in good nick. This one has basically just become part of my day to day life with great ease and it’s in the best condition it’s been in in years.

2) Take Better Care of My Skin – I fear that I am going to have to change my skin care routine up a bit shortly because I keep having break outs and I do not know why. Sometimes it’s hormonal and that’s fine, but it’s when it’s not that it’s annoying. And also the hyperpigmentation on my face has just become even more obvious recently, which I think is just because I’ve got a tan over the past couple of months and so the dark marks look darker. I’ve recently added Vitamin E oil to my night time routine as well as tea tree oil to deal with the breakouts overnight and I think there has been a small change in the state of my skin, but they are small. So I’m in two minds about what to do with it. But while I still um and ah about it I am keeping up with my existing routine to try and keep the issues under control.

3) Tone The Hell Up – I took a whole week off and did whatever the hell I wanted while I was in Greece because I was on holiday and who the fuck cares. I then came back and jumped straight back into doing a lot of cardio, which is a big deal for me because I cut the hell back from cardio for a good 2/3 months and just did low impact work outs (that focused on stretching as well). I then got my diet back on track for the most part and am still making small changes to it to try and make it better because all the exercise that I am doing don’t mean shit if my diet is whack. I’m also going to try and get back into exercises that focus more on stretching (like yoga and pilates which I haven’t done in over a month now). Look, I like the way my body looks. I like that it’s a lot stronger than it used to be. I like that I don’t need to fake being confident in wearing certain things that I own and actually am now. I will walk around in a crop top/bralette and shorts and not feel super self conscious. I have some personal goals that I am working towards for the end of the year and I feel confident that I am going to achieve them. I feel good about myself and that’s what this goal for the year was all about. I hated myself for too long and had far too many bad habits and behaviours that were doing me damage in so many ways and I’ve changed a lot of them and actually feel good now. Plus exercise is doing wonders for my mental health and that can never be a bad thing.

4) Start Saving Properly – Listen, I spent so much money in August cos holiday and I went a bit into denial about how much money I actually spent. So to counteract that I am basically not spending money on anything except for a need to basis for the next couple of months. So things like food, toiletries, my gym membership and my monthly train ticket are still on the list and I’m not going to deprive myself of going out if the opportunity arises, but for the most part I’m cutting back on my spending. That’s not going to contribute to the saving thing, but it is going to put me back in a position where I can start saving properly. This whole goal has been a total clusterfuck, which to be honest is what I expected.

5) Get Better Organised – I mean I don’t even know what is happening here. For the most part, I am not better organised but then also I somehow am as well…there has honestly been no change. But there probably needs to be because as it stands I am due to get more creative projects in my life that I need to dedicate time to and keep on top of them all, so some change is going to have to happen. But then again, knowing me I also don’t think it will.

6) Try And Be More Creative/Just Write More – This is happening. I have 14,000 words of a novel written that came fully into existence throughout August. Plus I have some other projects that require my creativity over the next few months so this one is actually all coming together. Which I am really happy about because my creativity abandoned me in a big way recently and so having it back is just really great.

And that brings me to the end of this little 2017 intentions update. Another one of these will be coming at some point…I think it’s November…we’ll see. There are 2 more left that much I know.

Parentheses count: 3. See you tomorrow!

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