The (not so) good, the bad and the ugly..

The (not so) good, the bad and the ugly..

SO today’s post is something that you don’t really see talked about on blogs a lot….. COLD SORES. These little buggers aren’t on most people hot topics but can be the bane of some people’s lives.

They aren’t pretty, not only are they something you can’t really hide, they can actually be really uncomfortable. For those of you who have never had one (lucky you) you may not be aware of what they are, what causes them or be unsure whether to believe some of the myths you may have heard.

So the common cold sore is caused by the Herpes virus (not the strain you get down there) and can be caught very easily through contact with others who have a cold sore, including on towels etc.  and pretty much anybody can get infected. The virus stays in your body and can cause the cold sore if your immune system becomes compromised, even the simplest cold can trigger them. They can also be triggered by stress and things like the weather.

Post-face ruining scab, people can experience tingling and itchiness (which is worse because touching it only helps spread it), blisters break out and when they eventually burst it scabs over. This can turn into a horrible vicious cycle of scratching of the scab only for it to scab again, until eventually your skin heals. Symptoms can range from a couple of days to an ugly couple of  weeks.

My top tips:

  • The creams you can buy aren’t a gimmick, an amazing drug called acyclovir found in most creams such as Zovirax is involved in some amazing science (my fave thing)  to help treat the outbreak however are pretty much only effective pre-scabbing stage. Other creams like toothpaste can be used during the blister as it helps to dry them out (similar to when you use it for spots)
  • Try not to let it make you feel too self-conscious! Ignorant people who may stare or ask you what is, purely because they don’t understand. Just as a person can’t help getting spots, a cold sore is only a temporary inconvenience that you can’t prevent.
  • Try not to cover it. Whacking loads of concealer on top of a cold sore can be so tempting but honestly leaving it exposed will help it heal so much better plus if you use makeup brushes or sponges with foundation/concealer you may spread the cold sore further.
  • Treating a cold sore early is vital. I’ve heard from so many people to apply a cold wet tea bag as soon as you feel a tingling (not sure why this helps) but I’ve done it before and it was a miracle. Give it a try next time!
  • Be mindful of others. As you’d expect kissing is kind of off the cards for a while, but you have to be mindful of other things like sharing straws, towels and bedding.

 

T x

Big Boys Don’t Cry

Big Boys Don’t Cry

Hello all, welcome back! Today’s post is a bit serious and depressing but I feel is an issue that is a bit of a taboo in society…. male depression.

After witnessing first hand the effects of depression, one thing I can’t get my head around is the social concept that man can’t appear to be “depressed”. Daily, I see blogs (predominately by females as that’s just who I tend to follow) about people’s journey through depression, anxiety etc and I find it incredible, seeing the support that is shared amongst the blogging community (and in fact society as whole) as people start to realise the true impact of mental health. Finally, it starts to become a more approachable subject, people no longer mind talking about their medication or their recovery -however this has it’s limits.

I won’t go into too much detail but a few years ago a family friend lost their life to depression, it was pretty devastating and shook my family, particularly the males. I’d never seen my dad cry before until the day we found out and to me this was pretty weird, having been brought up to be expressive of my own emotions. Had he not been sad before or had society just taught him that to cry was to show weakness?

Every day we here the casual phrases “man up” etc. but when it comes down to it people are not as accepting of mental health issues among men as they are women and therefore they don’t seek help. According to the Good Samaritans  in 2014, the highest category for suicide was among males ages 45-49. How many of these men felt that they couldn’t ask for help even within their own family?

Above is a video  (Source: WHO) my friend used to describe depression and I think it hits all the main points head on about depression, it’s symptoms and coping mechanisms. The more we talk about this subject the less of a stigma it has.

T x

Things I’ve learnt since joining the gym

Things I’ve learnt since joining the gym

Hey everyone,

For those of you who know me or have read my I’m Not Fat blog post you’d know I am a massive novice  at this “gym” thing. I joined in September but have been working a  lot harder more recently as I prepare for my 7 day hike hahahaha help me along the Great Wall of China, plus i love the general satisfaction in trying to look and feel fab. My relationship with the gym has been as on and off as Robin and Ted from How I Met Your Mother (PS NO SPOILERS I’M ON THE LAST SERIES), but I finally am getting in the rhythm of things, with lots of help from my sporty house mates (shout out to Ben, Grandad and Chris!) and the lovely gym, Fit4less in Hatfield (best staff around!). There are many things I have learnt along the way, here are a few:

  1. Gym clothes are hella cute. As my weekly attendance at the gym increases , so does my cute gym attire collection (naturally) and living next to a Nike Outlet store really giphy.gifisn’t helping. I mean, 6 different coloured sports bras (with matching leggings) are a NECESSITY, right?
  2. It doesn’t matter how silly you look in the gym (there’s probably someone looking sillier). I have experienced falling off the treadmill…I was mortified but then I looked around and nobody had even noticed.
  3. Not only is it physically rewarding, but the Bounts app that I have recently found, gives you points for checking in at the gym and when you complete a certain amount of steps/ exercises a day. Points means prizes (in the form of high street vouchers) and I am a sucker for free stuff. Another gym trip anyone?
  4. Quality over quantity. Over the past few weeks I have had to learn a lot of things, particularly for things like squatting (there’s a lot more to it than you think)- back position , leg angels  angles, not everybody gets it right. In fact, a lot of the big bulky scary men you may see in gym probably haven’t  perfected some of the techniques and may be putting unnecessary strain on other parts of the body. Knowing that you are using your body properly, even if it isn’t the deepest/fastest/strongest, is important.
  5. Nobody has to know what your motivation music consists of. My power playlist consists of some classic Kesha, Bon Jovi and the Pussycat dolls. Just remember to resist singing out loud.
  6. Selfies to track your progress are great for motivation but maybe when you get home. There is nothing more awkward than spotting someone taking selfies in the gym mirrors.
  7. You will hurt. The day after leg day, you WILL walk like a duck.. but in a good way. Pain in muscles is a sign you’ve worked hard, even if you do have to take three a single day rest day afterwards.giphy.gif
  8. The world of fitness nutrition is massive and expensive, if you want to try things like Pre-work outs, or Protein shakes, do your research, there a lot of factors to consider such as when they should be consumed and their different affects. My overall opinion is that they all taste like dirt but can be helpful in helping to reach a goal.
  9. There is nothing worse than someone who cannot attend the gym without letting people know about it, work hard for yourself not your 5,000 500 Instagram followers. Plus seeing other people and their fab abs makes me insanely jealous , please stop and post some potato-resembling photos like the rest of us, thanks.

What’s your fitness faux pas?

T x

Friends ( and not just Joey, Ross, Phoebe, Rachel, Monica and Chandler)

Friends ( and not just Joey, Ross, Phoebe, Rachel, Monica and Chandler)

Hello all, hope you’re all well! Today’s post is a little bit different from usual, I’m taking about friendships..

Before heading off to university I’m sure every single person used the term “we’ll definitely keep in contact”, with full intentions of keeping such promises. As I finish off my first year of university I look back and realise how quickly, although unintentionally, the breaking of such bold statements can happen. 3am deep chats about everything and anything become once-a-monthly conversations, reminiscent of the old MSN conversations beginning and ending with “what have you been up to?”.

At first I was devastated, the friends I had been so close with seemed so far away. It’s not that I wanted to stop being friends but life had gotten in the way. And even now, I see old pictures and get teary eyes but  I have learnt to look back and accept that as your life changes so do the people closest to you, an idea that my parents have always tried to drill into me (after moving halfway across the country when I was 12).

I’m sure friendship’s drifting apart is more common than people think, it happens in the blink of an eye without a second thought, although it can be sad, memories are never forgotten and the loss of certain friends make way for an array of new friends in the future. This time a year ago I was comfortable in my friendship group and held onto the hope that it would never change, but now I kind of find it exciting to be unaware of how different my life will be in a few years time..who knows which wacky friends I will end up with?

Tx

IT’S SUMMER…. apparently

IT’S SUMMER…. apparently

imagesThis Sunday in the UK marks the official beginning of Summer. It’s time to buy the holiday essentials before I pack for my holiday in April. Here is my wishlist of things to grab:

  1. SPF moisturizer- My favourite is the Garnier Moisture Match Illuminating Light Lotion with SPF20.! It gives my skin a slight glow and protects my skin! http://www.boots.com/en/Garnier-Skin-Naturals-Moisture-Match-Protect-and-Glow-Illuminating-Light-Lotion-SPF20-50ml_1299045/
  2. Hair and Scalp sun protection. One year I got a really burnt parting and every year since I am sure to protect my scalp, I also can’t stand the feeling of frizzled ( .. that’s not a word but we will go with it) hair. Boots do a small spray designed just for both of these issues and I daren’t go out without it when on holiday! Find it here http://www.boots.com/en/Soltan-Head-Hair-Dry-Touch-Transparent-Suncare-Spray-SPF30-75ml_1207168/
  3. Sturdy Sunglasses- Last year I went through 5 (yes, 5) pairs of sunglasses within a 2 week holiday, 3 of which my Dad sat on and broke. This year I am determined to keep them intact with a hard sunglasses case.
  4. Pumice- It’s sandal season and this only means one thing- pretty feet. I don’t have the nicest of feet so it’s nice to take an evening to treat them with a pedicure and a coat of polish.
  5. New Perfume? Well I do have to pass through duty free.. it would be rude not to.
  6. Waxing strips….Yikes. Ok it’s been spring for a while but in the UK it hasn’t exactly been “whack your legs out” weather and my legs aren’t at their prettiest. The best advice I have heard to get the smoothest pins is the shave then exfoliate your legs and then shave again!The new Wilkinson Sword hairy-legs_o_936008Snap is great for on the go ! http://www.boots.com/en/Gillette-Venus-Snap-Womens-Portable-Razor-_1651118/
  7. Waterproof mascara. I tend not to venture out of my flat without mascara on, for the sake of everyone else but the hassle of taking it on and off holiday is tedious.Instead, I take one waterproof with me and keep that on even if it’s not the most voluminous or lengthening. The biggest thing to remember is a makeup remover that will actually wash off waterproof mascara!
  8. New books- The ONLY time I read is by the pool on holiday. I must read 10 books in a week. This year I plan to either make my way through Game of thrones or the Divergent series.
  9. A list of cocktails to try ..I am talking slippery nipples, screaming orgasms and any other filthy cocktails I can find!

It’s 2 weeks until I fly and I am super excited … to do the pre-holiday shop that is! What are your holiday essentials?

T x

UNIVERSITY LIFE

UNIVERSITY LIFE

So this is something a bit different to my usual posts, but here I am, nearly at the end of my first year at Uni with a few words of advice for all of you.It’s been a crazy year and I’ve had loads of ups and downs but I honestly recommend Uni to anyone who considers it.Here is some of my advice:

  1. Try something new (trying to avoid sounding cliche here).There is a ridiculous amount of options available to a fresher, from the nudist society to badminton club.My biggest regret of fresher’s week is not signing up to anything, although I have attended some slightly embarrassing but fun Yoga sessions. Nobody at Uni knows who you are so it’s your opportunity to be whoever you want to be. It doesn’t even have to be a society,  try making a recipe you’ve never tried or dye your hair, these are the years for trial and error!
  2. If you’re not happy, DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. This is the advice I would be screaming at myself  a year ago, if I could. I hated my old accommodation halls as I didn’t get on with the people. I spent months being miserable and having nobody to hang around with but one day I emailed the accommodation office
    10749973_10204418614678760_1668831364282246634_o
    Me and my flatmates- totally sober.

    inquiring if there was a possibility of moving flat and BAM my whole Uni experience changed. I now live with all my best friends and couldn’t be happier. I am also changing course next year as this one wasn’t quite right. Just because you put down one course on UCAS doesn’t mean you’re obliged for life. It’s OK to try around with different things, they can’t expect us to get it right every time! There’s always someone to talk to to find a solution for anything.

  3. Expect things to go wrong – everyone thinks that everything is going to perfectly but no, you WILL burn your toast, you WILL miss a lecture and you WILL spend too much money. but it’s OK 🙂
  4. Don’t rely on your friends/Boyf- This sounds so harsh but it’s true.If you’re lucky enough to have people you know go to your Uni, don’t expect them to be there 24/7, you HAVE to make some new friends by yourself. Also it’s inevitable that you’ll grow apart from some friends back at home, everyone has their own life. I keep in touch with about 3 of my old friends who make the effort and that’s normal. Some people I know base their decision of uni (eg where) based on their relationship and I think that’s silly, if you trust your relationship enough you’ll be fine.
  5. HAVE FUN, You’ll experience things that make you think “what a waste of the whooping 9k we are paying to be here” but it WILL be the best time of your life. 3am trips to MacDonald? A picture of you kissing the ugly guy in a club? Terrible memories of a sambuca-fueled night? Frying pan ping pong?It’s all part of the experience!
  6. Oh, you should probably get some work in at some point too.

T x