Thursday, 23 March 2017

Tips & Products for Caring For Oily/Spotty/Teenage Skin

One thing that I've learnt, and begun to enjoy recently is my skincare regime. I've been trying to drink more water and making sure that I moisturise twice a day. But other than that, here's how I care for my oily/spotty/teenage skin...

As I've already mentioned, drinking water and moisturising are two of the most important things you can do. Drinking water is good not only for your skin, but for your body in general, so make a good effort to actually do it!! It'll leave your skin glowing and radiant! Also, no matter what type of skin you have, you need to moisturise. If you don't, your skin will produce more oils to compensate for the moisture it needs. That's most definitely not what you want! 

Every morning, I will wash my face using either a cleansing product from Simple's Oil Balancing range, or Ocean Salt or Dark Angels by Lush. I'll then use either Simple's light hydrating moisturiser, or the oil balancing one. If I've used Dark Angels then I use Lush's Tea Tree Water before putting on moisturiser, to close my pores and remove any charcoal residue from my face and neck. In the evenings, I'll just use a thick Nivea moisturiser after washing my face with water in the shower. Once a week, I use Lush's Mask of Magnaminty, or Ocean Salt, depending on whether my skin is dry, or spotty. (products linked below!)
I also try to go makeup-free for most of the week, as it allows my skin to breathe, and I realised that masking spots can end up making them worse. Read more about why I don't wear makeup everyday here

While having oily/spotty skin is part of being a teenager, there are products that you can use to minimise this. So, here they are: 

Finally, you need to ensure that you aren't putting lots of makeup on your face and leaving it there. This isn't good for you, no matter your skin type. Remove eye makeup using a gentle eye makeup remover, such as the Nivea one, and then use a gentle cleanser to remove the rest of your makeup and any residue. Then, you can use a face mask (but not everyday!), and pop on some moisturiser to bring your face back to it's healthy natural state. It might take longer than just using baby wipes or makeup remover wipes, but it's a lot better for your skin! You also need to ensure that you're washing your face at least once a day, and you're using products that actually work for your skin. 

Finally, spots and your skin is impacted by more than just what you put on it; stress, the flu or being poorly can cause more spots, as can hormones, and your diet. Please don't stress it if you do have spots or oily skin because we've all been there, and we all understand. As unfair as it seems, it's part of growing up, so you kind of just have to accept it. 

I hope you enjoyed this post! I wanted to share the products that I've been using that have been working for me, as they might help some of you out there! I know that Lush is expensive, and you may have allergies to certain products I've mentioned, but as always, you'll end up finding what works for you, it's just trial and error. 

Now, go hydrate!!! 

- Dottie x

Thursday, 16 March 2017

5 Ways to be Productive When You're Not Feeling It...

If you guys are anything like me and you're working and seeing friends and going to college or uni or school, then you'll be almost constantly exhausted and feel like you still have so much to do. 
When it comes to days off, I know all I want to do is sleep until midday, and then watch Netflix in my pyjamas for the rest of the afternoon. But because I'm averaging about one day off a week, I usually end up with so much to do, despite not feeling it. 

So, here are my suggestions for having a lazy but productive day... 

1. Clean and tidy your room
This is an instant mood boot, put clothes in the wash, put everything back where it lives. Give the floor a vacuum, clean your mirrors and windows, put some fresh bedsheets on. You'll feel the benefits of this for a few days at least, unless you're really bad at keeping your room tidy! 

2. Wash your makeup brushes
This always feels like a massive task to me, so much so that I've not done it for at least a month... Maybe two. But this is good not only for you and your skin, but for feeling like you've actually done something. Yay!

3. Polish your boots
If you guys are like me, you'll basically live in leather boots/Dr Martens. I very rarely give mine the love and care they deserve, so make some time to give your boots and shoes a good clean. It's a great way to feel inspired to create some new outfits, and it'll take all of about five minutes. 

4. Get moving! 
Get outside and go for a walk or a run, or do some exercise in your own home! I never make enough time to do exercise, but I'm trying to do some yoga a couple of times a week. What better time to do something than a day off?! 

5. Read a book
I always feel like I've accomplished something when I've spent a day reading and finished a book. Try it! 

So, I hope these tips were helpful! A day off doesn't always have to mean relaxing, you can still get stuff done and feel good about it! 

- Dottie x

Saturday, 11 March 2017

BOOK REVIEW: The Spinster Club Trilogy

The Spinster Club trilogy is a series of books written by author Holly Bourne. It follows a group of three teenage girls in college (UK) as they struggle with growing up, being okay, and being a feminist. The three books are called Am I Normal Yet?, How Hard Can Love Be, and What's a Girl Gotta Do?

Each book follows a different character and highlights the struggles of growing up. The first follows character Evie as she struggles with recovering from OCD and finding the perfect boy. The second features Amber, who spends her summer working at an American camp with her ex-alcoholic mother and a million and one difficult children. The third is a feminist quest from Lottie, who battles the sexism and prepares for a big uni interview. 

I really enjoyed reading these books, I do think they're great, and also a really good way to start to introduce teenage girls to feminism without all of the "men are pigs" "men who hold doors open for you are oppressing you" "all men are the same" nonsense. While not all of the equality issues are addressed (FGM, being forced to marry, etc. etc.), it does highlight how women face sexism in their everyday lives and I think that's important. 

I also like that these books highlight all aspects of teenage life - the struggles of school, the pressures of how to look and act, the struggles of finding who you are... These books have it all. Of course, they don't highlight normal life for everyone, and at some points the characters seem far from realistic, but it's fictional teen drama, so that's forgivable. 

I did really enjoy reading these books, so I don't want to pick them apart too much, or give any spoilers! There are so many important things covered in each book, and they definitely make for good reads! If you enjoy anything by John Green, then I can tell you that you will 100% love these books because they're just so much better than anything Mr Green has written (sorry... TFIOS is definitely overrated though...). 

So, here are the links to purchase them from 

So what are you waiting for?! Check 'em out and start yourself a feminist revolution!! 
- Dottie x 

Thursday, 9 March 2017

The Social Media-Induced Idea of a "Perfect Life"...

Hey look, I do it too...
In today's society, we are so invested in our online lives, and our online personas. I know that I'm the same, so I'm hardly judging anyone here. I find it fun to take photos and adjust all of the little things on Instagram to make it look enhanced. My heart swells a little when someone likes the photo. It's fun. And that's exactly how it should remain. 

I overheard a conversation the other day about what Instagram photos should be deleted, which should be kept, and how their "theme" is going... Now of course it's perfectly fine to want your insta to look good, I'm the same, but there's a point you reach where you kind of stop just wanting to share your life, and it becomes something of a problem.

I see it most in Instagram as it's the social media I use the most, but so many people try so hard to make it seem as though their lives are perfect, at least on social media. I'm not saying that you should post a photo every time you break down sobbing, but let your social media be messy. Themes don't matter, just post what makes you happy. 

In the online makeup community, there are so many photos and videos of people covering acne scars, and tiny blemishes that you cannot even see. This is what I'm talking about - creating a false sense of perfect, not showing any flaws whatsoever. I fail to understand what's so wrong with letting a little spot show, and there are so many "hacks" to stop getting spots when - newsflash - it's part of life and part of growing up. 

People will post photos of insanely skinny models and call it "goals". Think of the little girls reading that who perhaps have a bit of puppy fat or don't have massive boobs and think of the negative effect on them and their self-perception. 
People on social media fail to show the negative aspects of their lives, fail to show that they're human, and us looking at that can be damaged by that. 

We all look at people online and see skinny bodies, massive muscles, perfect makeup, amazing holidays, and the list goes on. We look at them and see our lives as so much less, pointless, worthless, because we don't have these things. 

What we don't see is the working crazy hours to earn enough for that holiday, the gruelling hours at the gym to achieve that perfect body. Social media doesn't show the breakdowns, and the arguments and the hard work and effort that goes into someone's life. 

The solution to this problem to take everything you see online with a pinch of salt - you don't know how good the person is at editing, what they do when they aren't online. We need to stop comparing our behind the scenes with everyone else's highlight reel. 

Let yourself be real

Let yourself be messy, and free and laugh and have fun and put thoughts of likes and comments and followers out of your head. You have only one life, don't waste it all away wishing to be someone else. 

- Dottie x

Monday, 6 March 2017

Why I Don't Wear Makeup Everyday...

Makeup is fun, I'll give you that. I love going to stores and looking at new lipstick shades and buying new eye shadow palettes. I find so much joy in transforming my face into one that looks so perfect, and so different. 
Not many foundations I've tried will cover my lil spot scars

I used to do this every single day before work and before college and even before going to watch a few movies with my boyfriend. I kind of reached the point where it wasn't fun anymore, it was something that I felt I had to do, to be pretty, to be noticed, to be worthy of the love of my boyfriend. It makes no sense, I know, but I had to put makeup on, even if it meant I didn't eat that morning. It made it worse that I'd get home after a long day and just not bother to properly remove my makeup and treat my skin. 

It took a few months of this before I realised what I was doing to my skin, I was covering spots and just making my skin worse, and hating it. So I stopped spending on makeup, and invested in some good skincare products instead. (Look out for a post featuring these!). My cheeks are dotted with little acne scars from where I picked at my spots, and I occasionally get the odd blackhead from when my pores were so clogged up with foundation, but I've come to love this face of mine. 

I have started to choose sleep and breakfast over foundation, cared-for skin over perfect eyeliner. I feel much better for it, and all of those negative thoughts and feelings surrounding makeup have completely vanished now. 

Sometimes you've got to do things like this, for your mental health, for your body's health. It's the same as taking time out from a busy schedule. It's no big deal, and you're still you at the end of the day. 

But we're only human, and we have to make the correct choices for us. 

I am able to enjoy wearing makeup and dressing up now, much more than I did before. I get a sense of pride now when I look at my made-up self, because I went to the effort to look nice. And I can actually look like I've made an effort for events, etc. now! Which is quite fun! 😁 (I just discovered the emoji thing, it's quite cute!) 

So there we have it... Look after your faces folks, your skin will thank you for it!! 

- Dottie x