Friday, 31 July 2015

Depression - Coming Back To Blogging

It's no secret that my mental health has been bad - if you follow me on Twitter, you get a day in/day out look at what's going on in my life, but I have been absent on here because of it. I made a little bit of a name for myself being so honest about my depression and anxiety on here - I was never shy about it and yet, this time I dipped lower than I've ever been before and I'm really struggling with it. This used to feel like a sanctuary for me, and in the last few weeks I've felt a little trapped by the idea of my blog - I wanted to be honest about how I was feeling, and yet I wasn't ready to talk about it; so I fell silent. 

Orange Sertraline Packet

Many of you will know that I stopped taking my antidepressants a few months ago, but last week I started back on Sertraline. More than anything, this time this seems like a relief - it seems like a float in a sea where I didn't used to be able to see land. That's not to say this week has been easier - it hasn't; I find myself awake at half past five in the morning, already worried that in a few hours I'll have to get out of bed and face the day ahead, I still find it hard to sit down and tell the people closest to me how bad things have gotten and yet, this still feels like a step forwards, and it definitely is.

Signing up for university within the same couple of weeks that I was put back on medication for my anxiety and depression is overwhelming. Although I'm excited to have something challenging to do again, I struggle to find any faith within myself that I will be able to keep up with the course, especially as I'll be working from home and I won't have the support right in front of me. By then, though, I hope that I will be a few months closer to CBT - which will hopefully provide me a pathway for the future, something that I'm yet to have even after ten years of struggling with myself.

This isn't intended to be a woe is me post as much as an update, I promised I would do my best to show my depression in truth on here, no matter how ugly it got - and I'd be lying if I said it wasn't about at it's ugliest now. Right now, I'm sitting in the blackness and I'll be honest in saying that I just don't see a light at the end of the tunnel, but maybe, just maybe, starting back on my antidepressants is somebody giving me a torch to help me get by in the mean time.

Sammy xo.

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

My (Guilt-Riddled) New Skincare Routine

So - I spend a lot of time lately in bed and so it stands to figure that I have a lot of time to watch Youtube. Now, there's only so many episodes of My Drunk Kitchen and funny cat videos you can watch and so - last week, I stumbled across an old favourite as I was forced to branch out; Caroline Hirons. I used to be super into watching Caroline, and as I watched last weekend I got more and more guilty about the fact that it's been a long time since I kept up with a skincare routine properly and so, much to Katy's amusement, I forced myself out of bed to dig through my beauty drawers to find the bits and pieces that I needed to put one together.

Moa The Green Balm

For cleanser I've been using Moa The Green Balm - I loved this when I bought it, and I still use it frequently on cuts and grazes as a healing balm, but it's been a solid few months since I used it as a cleansing balm. I'm a big fan of it, it's a thick balm that has a clean smell and really does a good job on eye make up - although the pot is fairly small, it's on the cheaper end of things as it's only £9.99. I follow this up with the bonte cleanser that I won't talk too much about as I mentioned it in my Summer skincare a few weeks back here - and then with The Body Shop's Energising Face Spritz, which is a new addition (courtesy of Katy) that I'm a huge fan of. Unlike other facial spritzes, this isn't just a thin water mist, it has a slightly moisturising feel to it which sinks quickly into the skin, plus it smells like sweet citrus and not flowers which tends to be a theme with other facial mists.

Indeed Labs Hydroluron Moisture Jelly

I made a rookie mistake when picking a serum, and used one that I got in a Memebox - The Yeon's Jeju Hallabong Mild All In One Serum, that is amazing; thin, quickly absorbed and smells like oranges - but will also be nigh on impossible to replace when it runs out (seriously, if you know where I can get one, hook your girl up.) For moisturiser I've been using Hydraluron Moisture Jelly by Indeed Labs - although I wasn't a massive fan of the original Hydraluron that goes under moisturiser, this jelly works really well, my skin is combination and I've had no problems at all with it so far. This is then finished off using the Balance Stop Puffy Eyes Eye Gel - not much to say about this except it does exactly what it says on the tin, brings down the puffiness in my eyes. 

So, there's my new skincare routine! What have you been using and loving lately?

Sammy xo.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Doll White 14 Day Teeth Whitening Strips

Now, I'm super self conscious about my smile. I have (as I commonly joke about over on mine and Katy's Youtube, cheeky plug) too much gum to teeth ratio, and with a chip in my front tooth - I always feel a little iffy about smiling with my teeth. I'm always on the look out for that little thing to make them a little less of an issue for me - and so when Doll White sent me a 14 Day Teeth Whitening Strip Set* I was super excited to give it a shot.

Doll White Teeth Strips

Now, disclaimer right here - I'm the sister of a dentist and so my oral hygiene (gross) is better than average I would suspect, so my teeth weren't particularly bad in the first place; however, as Doll White has no peroxide, I figured they were worth a shot (especially as said dentist brother couldn't have a go if they had no peroxide!) So, I got to grips and got using them.

Teeth Whitening Strips

The plastic strips inside each black packet have two gum strips inside, one flat rectangular strip for the top teeth, and one slightly curved, distinctly shaped strip for the bottom teeth. Using them is easy - peel them off, put them on and curl the excess around the top of your teeth. As easy as they are to use, I did find that some of the strips peeled off the backing plastic as I was pulling them out of the foil packets - not a massive deal, you can salvage them and use them, but it does get a little messy as you have to unpeel where the gel has stuck to itself.

Then simply leave them for 30 minutes and then peel off and rinse the excess (the excess gel is gross and very resistant, by the way, so might take more than one rinse to get rid of). So do they work? For me personally, not much - not enough that I feel the before and after pictures warrant putting up - however, for the 14 days that I used them, my teeth did feel cleaner. Would they work if my teeth were worse to begin with? Probably - and I'm definitely tempted to try a longer course to see if that makes a difference. Although they didn't particularly do much for me - for the £19.99, they're worth a shot, especially if you have pretty yellow teeth to start with

Have you tried any teeth whitening products?

Sammy xo.
*Products marked by an asterisk(*) were sent by Doll White in consideration for a review, however this has not influenced my opinion and all views expressed are completely my own. Please read my disclaimer for more information.

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Preach.

Let me transport you to another place. Imagine you're in Liverpool city centre (if you've never been, just imagine that you're in your own city centre, only add more pigeons and overflowing McDonald's bins, make the Primark bigger and add more women in rollers) and imagine it's a pretty nice day - which you've inadequately dressed for - and you're walking down the main street, in front of the aforementioned huge Primark; then a man stops to talk to you.

Bible Quote John 13:34

You didn't ask him to stop, you barely glanced at him - but your unwillingness to stop and listen offends him. Why don't you want to take his test about your religious faith? It angers him enough to shout after you in the street, rather aggressively. Sound bizarre? It does, doesn't it - but it literally happened to me last week. Now, I'm sure if you've ever met either myself or Katy, you'll know we didn't take it lightly - nor lying down, however that's really not the point here. As a gay woman, I'm not going to lie - preachers make me uncomfortable. I am all too aware that just on principle, most (although I hasten to add, not all) strongly religious people are against my sexuality. Middle aged (I'm being polite, there) men shouting after me in the street would make me uncomfortable anyway, but particularly when they're angry I don't support their religion and I'm with my girlfriend - it puts me in a position that, when all I'm doing is walking through town, I certainly don't want to be in.

Don't get me wrong - I am all for religion. Even as an atheist, I find it fascinating; RS was one of my favourite subjects in school - I would never convince somebody that what they believe in didn't exist, nor would I suggest that they shouldn't spread the word to other people; however, in the same way that I wouldn't force my lack of religion onto somebody else, I don't want somebody else's belief forced onto me - or at least not unless I go up and choose to have them tell it to me.

So this is a post asking you to be polite. Give me information about your religion, don't force your tests on me. Don't suggest I'm going to hell if I don't have time to stop to have you criticise me in the street - and certainly don't expect me to come back and listen to what you have to say if you've literally shouted after my girlfriend and I to the extent that we felt uncomfortable in our own home town.

What do you think about street preachers?

Sammy xo.

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Happy Birthday (@)Katy(gilroyblog)

As we've lived our relationship almost start to finish over social media, it seemed appropriate that my birthday dedication would go on my blog. Many of you know that Katy and I are a couple and have been for a good few months now, and they've been tough and glorious in equal amounts.

Gay Couple

Every single day I am grateful that Katy is in my life, I am grateful when I wake up next to her, when she strokes my hair off of my face, when she proof reads my posts and gives me her opinions on the news. She really is one of the most amazing people to grace my life with her presence, and I'm so lucky that she picked me to put her future into - I can't wait to see what adventures the world holds for us.

Here's to your 20th birthday - our first birthday spent together. Here's to baths that take three hours to fill, here's to countless hours of Netflix we'll undoubtedly watch, here's to all the carbs we'll sit together and eat. 

You are amazing, Katy - so beautiful inside and out, so strong and intelligent and resourceful - I love you and have an amazing birthday. Hopefully by the time this goes live you'll have opened your presents off me and we'll be counting down the minutes until Domino's opens.

Sammy xo.

PS. Sorry for the soppy post, but you know that you all love us.

Friday, 3 July 2015

Timeless Truth Herbal Rejuvenation Immortelle Mask

I love a good face mask. I'll be honest - I love anything that means I can spend longer than I need to having a bath - but, I also love a face mask that doesn't need to be used in the bath; the ultimate lazy girls best friend. So when Timeless Truth offered to send me a Herbal Rejuvenation Immortelle Mask* I jumped at the chance - whereas you may read "sheet mask" I read "can be done in bed and won't end up caking your hair to your scalp"; it's the little things in life.

Timeless Truth Herbal Rejuvenation Immortelle Mask

This is, I'm told, one of their Fusion range, which means that the masks themselves are fabric, they're packed with a dehydrated product and then stored in serum in the sachet - well, that's all very technical, isn't it? Apparently, in basic terms, when you put the mask on - both the dehydrated product and the serum work together to help your skin. Simples. You may have seen me wearing mine, in fact, on my twitter - they're very sexy, as I'm sure you'd imagined.

The first thing about this - I don't know if it's my head, but this mask fits very differently on my face than on a models. It's not an issue, per say, but does have me wondering whether my head is particularly small? On top of this, these are very, very wet. It says you can keep the serum that's left in the packet, and if I wasn't such a reckless packet open that might have been true - however, I ended up with serum everywhere, including dripping off my mask whilst it was on my face during the 20 minutes I kept it on. Unexpected, but not a huge deal, it just took a little clean up - worth being aware of, though.

Fabric Sheet Mask

According to Timeless Truth the mask's; "Organic Immortelle Extract with Hylauronic Acid helps reduce fine lines and the visible sign of ageing. Skin is nourished and stimulated whilst the upper layers of the epidermis are moisturised." Did I like the mask? Yes, a lot - especially for Summer as the serum is a nice cold addition to a pamper night. Did it do what it says? My skin felt softer and clearer, however it would realistically take more than one shot to give a fair opinion on long term effects, I think.

I'd recommend the masks, although at £4.90 a shot - I'd say for occasional use, unless your skin is really bad. Definitely on the pricier side, but definitely a lovely treat when you're in need of a decent pick me up and some super soft skin.

Have you tried Timeless Truth masks?

Sammy xo.
*Products marked by an asterisk(*) were sent by Timeless Truth in consideration for a review, however this has not swayed my opinion and all views expressed are completely my own. Please read my disclaimer for more information.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Nipple Piercing Experience

I was one of those kids - as soon as I was old enough (or could pass for old enough, anyway) I got as many piercings as I could fit in my body. I've had my fair share - from an industrial to my nose, from my tongue to a microdermal in my forearm. This piercing's been a long time coming - but I got it done with Katy on a bit of a whim, so I thought I'd share the experience with you (without photos of my wonky boobs, sorry.)

I was really nervous to go in - more about whapping my boobs out than the fact a needle was going to be shoved through one; but our piercer, Tom, was lovely. He quickly settled Katy down to watch, got everything sorted and then got me to take my top off, stand with my arms at my sides and he got to work with marking up my nipples. Now, I know some piercers won't let friends in when you're being pierced - but Katy being there (especially as my girlfriend) really helped, as it meant she could thoroughly inspect my wobbly bits to ensure that the dots were even.

Topshop Bra

Tom talked me through everything that was going to happen, explained that the piercing was going to be slow, and would go through the bottom of the "bud" of my nipple (flippin' heck, the more words I write, the more awful the whole thing sounds - bare with me!) and then lay me down. This was the bit that I'd been dreading - the clamp. I was clamped up quickly, which was uncomfortable but nowhere near as bad as when I'd had my tragus clamped to be pierced, and then he wiggled it back and forth to check the dots were still even.

Okay, go time. Are your eyes watering yet? The needle went in - and very, very, very slowly - I was pierced. This is a really slow piercing, as Tom had warned me - or at least it is if you want an even one. Taking a deep breath as he'd suggested helped; but it did hurt - although a lot less for myself than Katy. I'd give the piercing pain a 5 out of ten, and the putting the bar in probably rates higher at around a seven. All done, I put my bra back on, threw my t-shirt on and sat down to watch Katy yell her way through hers - all the while thankful we'd thought to grab a McDonald's between that morning's tattoo session and the afternoon's piercing session, or I definitely would have passed out.

How's it healing? Pretty well, so far - although, naughty, I do forget to clean it more often than I like to admit. I've had little to no pain the whole time, with about two days of bleeding that quickly healed up. I'm only about two weeks in - but I'll be sure to update a few weeks/months in!

Have you got any particularly painful piercings?

Sammy (brave soldier, as confirmed by Tom the piercer) xo.

 
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