The Deoderant Debate.

After I studied ecotoxicology as part of my University degree, my eyes were opened to the importance of paying attention to what you put on your skin. We are subjected to so many synthetic compounds that, long-term, may prove detrimental to our health. However, advertising and celebrity endorsements can easily convince us that they are the perfect solution.

One thing that I took a real interest in during my time studying that module was breast cancer and why cases are dramatically on the rise. In some cases the women have led a very unhealthy lifestyle, in others the ladies concerned have been fit as a fiddle, so there is definitely an element of bad luck involved I should imagine; but taking preventative measures can surely only be a good thing? Provided of course that you're not living off of spring greens and living in a Clean Room and thus avoiding living your life!

I'm sure most of you have heard of the relatively recent (within last few years) trend to swap from traditional antiperspirant deoderants to natural deoderants. Anti-perspirants, as the name suggests, stop your underarms from sweating, whereas deoderants simply stop the stench by preventing bacterial growth. It is not sweat itself that smells, but the bacteria that live on the skin and break down that sweat into acids (info here). The reason that this links in with my earlier breast cancer ramble is that it is believed by some that the build up of toxins around the breast tissue after long-term use of anti-perspirants can increase the risk of breast cancer (Darbre, 2003, Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry). I mean think about it, sweating is one of the ways your body gets rid of the crap in your system. Telling your underarms, 'uh uh honey, no sweating allowed here' can't be good for them! There is also believed to be an effect caused by the oestrogenic properties of aluminium.

I tried a natural roll-on deoderant a couple years ago (can't remember the name of the brand!). It smelled quite nice, but unfortunately left me smelling, ahem, not at my freshest a couple hours later. It made me lose faith in natural deoderants and so I went back to Dove. However about a month ago I decided to give it another try and that's when the PitRok Crystal Natural Deoderant Stick entered my life. I found that the cheapest place to purchase it was off Amazon for about £4.50.

This deoderant:
  • does not block pores
  • is free from Aluminium Chlorohydrate & Aluminium Zirconium, parabens, SLS, fragrance and silicone
  • is not tested on animals
It MUST BE applied to freshly washed skin, and either itself or your underarms must be damp. So, after I hop out the shower, I dry off my body with the exception of my underarms, swipe this baby across a couple times and am good to go for the day. I can vouch that even after a heavy zumba dance workout I do not stink!

Yes, compared to your bog standard deoderant, this is more costly. But consider the long-term benefits and I think you'll agree that the price is worth it. But hey, that's just me.

November Wishlist

This is the first of what will be my monthly wishlist. I have made a real effort to reduce impulse buys by putting all the new bits I'm lusting after on a wishlist. If something stays on there and I can't get it out of my mind then I will allow myself to buy it if I've got dosh left in my beauty budget!

1. Diorific Lipstick in Dolce Vita Red 2. Clarins Delicious Self Tanning Cream 3. Dior Smoky Khaki 3 Couleurs Smoky Eye Palette 4. Escentric Molecules in Molecule 01 5. Burt's Bees Radiance Body Lotion 6. Omorovicza Illuminating Moisturizer 7. Yankee Candle in Red Apple Wreath

The Dior products are just pure beautiful, the Clarins self tanning cream has come strongly recommended and I'm thinking of stepping into the self tanning realm for the first time (yikes!), Escentric Molecules in 01 is just such an innovative idea that I love the sound of, Burt's Bees I've used before and love, Omorovicza is pricey but I was blown away by the sample I tried, A yankee candle for every season does wonders for the soul and this one is to die for!

Pkease let me know if you have any of the above! I would love to hear your opinion or review :)

Guerlain Insolence

I've been searching for a new fragrance for a while; one that feels very 'me' and lasts well on my skin. I only own a few perfumes: something light and citrusy, dark and spicy and something feminine for everyday wear. For the past couple years, Jennifer Aniston's scent has been my pick. It is a gorgeous amber/sandalwood scent that is very mellow and easy to wear. Basically, Jennifer in a nutshell I should imagine. The only problem with that one though is that it only lasts a couple hours on the skin before I have to top-up. I always have it in my Travalo, but its still a pain and the end result is going through a bottle rather quickly.

The search for an everyday replacement (whilst Jen will always remain in my collection) has been exhausting. It just felt like an endless stream of average scents that may have been 'nice', but definitely didn't jump out at me. That was until Guerlain Insolence appeared on my radar.
At first whiff it just screamed parma violets (which, for those of you who aren't British, are old school violet flavoured sweets here). Now, I've never been a parma violet fan, but this just smelled DIVINE and I fell in love instantly. The blend of violet, sandalwood and tonka bean all melt together to produce a warm, slightly fruity and very feminine scent on the skin. The smell, to me, is alluring, sensuous and absolutely inviting.

I got mine in Boots when there was an offer on the 30ml bottle down from £41 to about £26. £41 for 30ml is super steep, and I am hoping that by the time this one runs out that there will be an offer on elsewhere for roughly the same price. The quality, however, is exceptional; I sprayed this on today at about's now 3pm and it is going strong!

My Experience with S.A.D.

S.A.D. (Seasonal Affective Disorder) is such a sad name for a sad thing, don't you think :(?! This is a really personal post about something close to my heart, but I really hope it can help at least one of you out there if you are going through the same thing.

S.A.D, also known as the 'Winter Blues' is a recognised mental health condition thought to affect over 2 million people in the UK alone, with over 12 million across Northern Europe ( The combination of shorter days during the Winter months, lack of sun on many of those days and many of us spending that time indoors leads some individuals to develop this condition. Our body clocks get all confused; we're not experiencing the regular pattern of waking up with the light peeking through the curtains, heading to work in the light, coming home in the light and going to bed after dark. Instead, with many of us having early starts to the work day, we wake up with startling alarm clocks in the dark, walk or drive into work in the dark, often not making it outside during our breaks and then leaving in the dark.

Without that light in the mornings, our body doesn't produce the necessary hormones which stimulate our energy powerhouse for the day, so we frequently feel lethargic and sluggish. Common associated feelings include: depression, withdrawal from social situations, loss of libido, loneliness, cravings for sweet foods, anxiety, and exhaustion. Not fun!

I grew up living in hot, sunny places until the age of 16 when my family returned to the UK for my parent's work. Things were never really the same for me after that. I adore sunshine, being outdoors and warm days and nights, so I really struggled getting used to English grey and drizzle. Occasionally England sees a bout of beautiful weather, but 2 weeks out of the year is simply not enough for me, unfortunately! Traditionally every Autumn is when my mood starts to shift and my energy levels drop. I lose motivation, make much less effort to see friends, have more fights with my boyfriend, eat less healthily and do less exercise. I find myself thinking more and more negative thoughts, losing faith in myself, convicing myself that I should give up on my dreams and many other really negative feelings!!

This year was a particularly difficult one for me. I finished University and moved in with my boyfriend into a shared house. We were both broke, jobless, and stressed. Added to this, England didn't really have any kind of Summer this year; the rain was almost constant and the sun far away. This resulted in having very few nice days outside. The months went on and it got darker and darker and my mood more sour by the day. I haven't been blogging as much, making the effort to keep in touch with friends that had moved away after University, getting as much exercise and making sure to eat properly. I have honestly been miserable and feeling completely lost.

Only recently did I make the decision to STOP. Like any change in life, it has to come from you. YOU have to make the initial steps to climb back up the happy ladder and get out of your rut. Start small. Focus on what makes you happy and surround yourself with those things; these for me include bright pictures and artwork and the smell of a nice comforting candle. Also buy a S.A.D lamp! I purchased mine on EBAY for about £40 and keep it on and near me as much as possible when I am at home during the day. I also swear by taking 1000 mg Vitamin C every day. Things like exercise and eating healthily can be so hard when you are in a lull, trust me I know, but once you get your energy levels slowly ascending, it wont seem as hard to make the effort. This also goes for making plans with your friends, going for days out even when the skies are grey. Trust me, you feel so much more energised and better for it afterwards.

The last important thing is to TALK ABOUT IT! Instead of projecting your miserable self onto others and having them mistakingly think you loathe them, be open and honest with them and tell them that you are feeling pretty low at the moment and want them to just be supportive for you. I cannot emphasise enough how important this is in relationships! Things like a loss in libido and rejecting your other half can really result in your partner feeling hurt and withdrawing themselves emotionally from you; I have seen it happen in so many relationships! Don't force yourself to be affectionate or intimate if you just don't feel like it, but make sure you are communicating effectively with your partner and letting them know that it is not them, just a tough time you are going through.

Below are a few things that have helped me. Please comment below if you have any tips you would like to share.

Tom Ford Scarlet Rouge

This is my first TF Lip Colour, and I must say that I have fallen head over heels.

 I chose the shade Scarlet Rouge, a blue-toned red. I have so many orangey-reds that I thought I'd mix it up a bit. The texture of these lipsticks are a dream; they are really buttery and glide on superbly. Formulated with Brazilian murumuru butter they are also very moisturising and feel comfortable throughout the day. They are not the longest wearing lipsticks because they are so creamy, but personally I would much rather reapply and be left with soft lips than have a 12-hour moisture sucker-upper on all day! Especially during the winter months. 

With a hefty price-tag, Tom Ford Lipsticks are definitely a luxurious treat, but I would honestly recommend with both thumbs up in the air.