sponsored by Optrex.
There's so many reason as to why our eyes can get dry and irritated. I've noticed as Fall has come around, my eyes are so dry and irritated. I try to not rub my eyes frequently because it does no good for the skin or the eyes themselves. I think the combination of the computer screen and central heating irritate the eyes - can't win. Working on a computer means long hours glued to a screen - although I do try give myself at least 5 - 10 minutes away from the screen - according to a recent survey, us Brits, spend on average more than 6½ hours a DAY, staring at our screens & that doesn't even include the amount of minutes we spend looking at our devices as well as computer screens. I could only imagine how many of us possibly suffer from dry & irritated eyes in the country. We're somewhat 'bound' to our screens daily.

Are you unsure whether you might suffer from dry eyes?

Why not take on the Optrex blink challenge and face-off with handsome Rodrigo and see if you can outstare his smoulder *growl*

- _______If you blinked while adoringly gazing at Rodrigo, you could have dry eyes.

Suggestion: Try Optrex ActiMist 2 in 1 Eye Spray for Dry & Irritated Eyes. Optrex ActiMist 2 in 1 Eye Spray helps to relieve, refresh and revive dry eyes by helping repair the eye’s natural protective moisture barrier to reduce moisture loss. It's a liposomal spray which means that it'll stabilise and help repair, improving lubrication of the eyes and eyelids which may have been disturbed by environmental factors. Optrex have found that dry eye triggers can be caused by central heating, air-conditioning, weather conditions and staring at screens for too long. Perfect for me to try out!
I find that when I'm wearing make-up or contacts the dryness can be increased so the fact that this can be sprayed while wearing either or both, makes it a beneficial product to have. Just close the eyes and I do one spritz per closed eyelid. It produces a light mist, it has a faint smell but it's not bothersome and doesn't last past the initial spritz. I was amazed at how quickly the mist absorbs once it touches the skin and nothing is out of place on my face. I noticed nothing ran or smudged so wearing makeup and having to use this really isn't a problem. I can pop this into my bag and go about the day, while knowing this can be used up to 4x a day. I've had to use this I'd say 3x max in a day during the earlier stages and then as and when I've needed. There's lubrication after I've blinked a couple times once sprayed leading to comfortable eyesight. Not bad at all - pretty impressed.

Tell me, how did you and Rodrigo get on? Would this be something you'd use to relieve dry eyes?

Purchase: Optrex ActiMist 2in1 Eye Spray for Dry + Irritated Eyes RRP: £15.31
- also available from Superdrug and all other good pharmacy and grocery stores

-The Optrex Blink Challenge is not a diagnostic tool. You should consult a healthcare professional if required.

Optrex ActiMist 2in1 Eye Spray for Dry + Irritated Eyes

Dove are a lovely, inexpensive but indulgent feeling brand. That familiar scent we couldn't confuse for another brand, it's the one thing that I do like about the brand. The scent, the fact I never have an issue while using their products, always make them great for gift suggestions, so is it okay to mention the C-word? Because these gifts from Dove for under £10 will be good stocking fillers. Yesterday I shared the Dove DermaSpa Uplifted+ range and today it's their Goodness3 range is designed to transform dry skin to look even, luminous and velvety soft with a blend of omega oil with Surface Cell-Moisturisers™. Surface Cell-Moisturisers are key moisturising actives compressed from natural seed oils then blended with omega oil. Although I don't suffer from dry skin and don't think you need to, to a) moisturise & b) use dry skin targeted products because I like them for the extra protection especially in colder months.

DermaSpa Goodness3 Body Lotion 200ml £5.99
With a fragrance of creamy vanilla, musk and coconut, it's fast absorbing - counting in just under 60 seconds for me, that was putting it on, rubbing it in until it dispersed, watching the high sheen turn semi-matte. Easily spreads, nothing sticky and doesn't sit on top of the skin.
It left the skin smooth to touch, the scent still lingered. I prefer lotion for more warmer - hotter months because for my skin it's lightweight but moisturising but don't be discouraged as it's not a watery textured lotion it's more of a gel consistency.

DermaSpa Goodness3 Body Crème 300ml £7.99
The consistency for this is light-weight more on the water texture side as I'd say it's runnier than it's lotion counterpart but I find it leaves my skin more smoother to the touch, it's been nourished that little bit more as it's rich but not greasy. The fact that I can use it to moisturise my skin but then I don't have to wipe or wash and dry my hands off is a telltale sign.

DermaSpa Goodness3 Body Oil 150ml £9.99
Like the rest of the range it carries the vanilla, musk & coconut scent. This oil I don't find to be greasy but super hydrating, quick absorbing and leaves the skin with a beautiful sheen. I love to put an oil on because it's a quick cheat to get healthy, glowing skin. As you can see it has a gold accent to the oil and slight bits of mica running through, not a lot so you won't be glistening like a disco ball but enough to give a healthy subtle glow.


Dove DermaSpa Goodness.

Today I'm talking about two of three products available from the Dove Uplifted+ range. Aimed at restoring and repair thirsty skin, with feather-light lotions, that'll provide deep penetrating moisture and nourishment to help firm skin.

DermaSpa Uplifted+ Massaging Body Roll-on 100ml £8.99
This one I was more interested in because it's not often I see a moisturising product with the rollerballs attached? Combination of toning massage gel and a gentle roll-on. It's easy to use, slide the trio of rollerball heads to the on position, hold the tube firmly and press the rollerballs against the skin to release the silky satin gel - massage in a circular motion. This one is nice, the gel and rollerball provide a cooling but a relaxing experience. I like to use this on my stomach and thighs. Just laying back after a shower or bath, roll this on. I'm shocked at how lovely the skin feels afterwards - I sincerely hope this helps with firming and elasticity.

DermaSpa Uplifted+ Body Oil 150ml £9.99
It's got that slight Dove scent but has something more sweet and floral about it. It is not a thick oil, more watery in texture. The way it performs reminds me of a dry oil - although not marketed as one, because it absorbs quickly & leaves no grease. The skin felt firmer after a few days of continuous use. Especially as I was using the massaging body roll-on with it. As I use this in targeted places and not a great deal is needed, I can see this bottle lasting a little while.


Dove DermaSpa Uplifted+.

Hylamide from Deciem is a skincare range that targets every depth of the skin from the surface o subcutaneous levels. I’m becoming more familiar with the Deciem brand & loving the products. This one is brand new and was just released in Boots on the 17th October.

I’m such a child, I love the Hylamide website it’s colour co-ordinated for the different series that you may need for skincare concerns. This product today is a part of the Core Series – High-Efficiency Face Cleaner. It aims to: clean surface, purifies pores, removes makeup and surface hydration.

This works by combining oils, esters and water-compatible cleaners so it’ll work like an oil cleaner but act like a water based one – um what?! Very different, so I was so intrigued because you expect something like an oil will just be like an oil – now you know I’m oil happy, so no issues there. Let me just briefly run down the oils included are rich in Vitamin E, fatty acids, great for acne prone skin, they help heal damaged skin.

So how did I find it performed? As it can be used two different ways – if you’re wearing makeup, massage the product onto a dry face, I’ll work the product on my eyes especially gently on the eyes to break down the make-up and rinse off with warm water. When used this way I found that it reminds me of a dry oil but not as 'oily' it's a different product than I've used before but it breaks down the makeup well and the face isn't dried out. Without make-up massage the product onto a wet face and rinse off with warm water, I noticed when wet it does give a light milky appearance but nothing big, very easy to wipe off. I like to use it in the morning as it doesn't feel to be stripping anything from my face and right now the more natural oils I can keep with this cold weather creeping in the better.

Available now from Boots or Online.

Have you tried anything from Deciem before?

Purchase: High-Efficiency Face Cleaner


Hylamide High-Efficiency Face Cleaner

Removing body hair ourselves is a chore - right? Well it can be in my case. I try do it regularly but hair grows back so quickly, it's frustrating, I really need to just take my laser out and have it nearby to zap these roots but I've still got to remove the hair first. I like things that are discreet, different attachments, suitable for travel & batteries included...Hello, Veet Precision Beauty Styler.

It's got 2 attachments for the face, of course the comb attachment has gone walkies and I can't find it since I got it -story of my life right now- Sorry. The comb attachment goes on top of the 2 sided precision head and you'd run it over the eyebrows to uniform the hair length. To be honest, I doubt this would be something I'd do, I quite like the length of my brows and even when I trim them I regret it, so I stick with what I know. I have used the precision head to tidy up above my brow where the hairs don't need to be and find it effective, no cuts, no irritation or redness after use which is a bonus with hair removal - just does nothing for that upper lip hair. The body areas are the bikini head which is amazingly close in it's removal but not thoroughly close as its not razor close, I do need to go over but here's to razors lasting a little bit longer as this does the hard work. I was so surprised and the comb does well with going through the hair to help cut it down so it does the trimming and removing. I pretty like it, more for the bikini section than the face, don't get me wrong I don't mind if for the brows I just prefer to pluck the hairs I may need to get rid of but for a quick tidy above the brows it's good once in a while.

Purchase: Veet Sensitive Precision Beauty Styler

- I also want to say thank you for all the nice comments on my previous post xo


Veet Sensitive Precision Beauty Styler

Humans are naturally insecure. From the dawn of time, cavemen probably wondered whose cave was bigger, who can make the biggest fire and bring home the juiciest meat to serve. Cain killed Abel because of jealousy, which stems from insecurity. Insecurities can eat us up and make us feel resentful but mostly towards ourselves. This made me think how I allowed others perceptions of beauty affect me negatively from a young age, because that’s where it starts, young, trying to fit in with the majority especially when you’re the minority. We don’t know what’s best in life and we look to what is fed to us through the media and our environment. In a society that plays us against each other, especially women (and even more so, women of colour) it’s not hard to find the faults that allow us to figure ourselves unworthy.

The European standard of beauty is always in our face; mainstream beauty is exclusively white. An article by Susan L. Bryant called “The Beauty Ideal: The Effects of European Standards of Beauty on Black Women” she says, “Black women are particularly vulnerable to the effects of European standards of beauty, because these standards emphasize skin colors and hair types that exclude many black women, especially those of darker skin.” Many celebrities have been ‘white washed’ especially more now than in the 80s & 90s, whether we realise it or not and if it’s been said or not, implied or not, mixed & black women have always been made to feel that our natural beauty cannot be embraced. While all images in advertising very narrowly reflect society, there’s no doubt that it’s highly more Eurocentric beauty driven. Melariche is a brand that exclusively carries brands for women of colour. A one stop online shop for products and advice. I was asked to share my Melariche story about how the western beauty standard has affected my self-esteem...

Growing up there was not as many mixed or black children within my environment as there is now - such as school, after school clubs. I knew I was different, I just had to look around and when you are given Barbie's that look nothing like you, Disney Princesses are what most little girls want to be & subconsciously these things are fed to young children. There's a thought; Would I be pretty or enough for others if I didn't look like what was popular and flying off shelves?

It wasn't until I was 11, did I have my first incident of being attacked for my race & skin colour. I was bullied for being mixed race – yes it happens. I am a child from a black mother and white father but solely know and raised by my black family. Black culture was all I knew. The girl told me such things as ‘You’re a half breed’, ‘You should die’, ‘You’re disgusting’, ‘Mutt’. And this came at the hands of a black girl, my age, who was of a darker complexion who possibly was too a victim also of the European standard of beauty and she probably saw in me that I had ‘light skin privilege’ - FACT: Light-Skinned Privilege Doesn’t Make You Immune To Discrimination. She attacked me and any confusion I had begun to resonate more where my self-esteem was diminished. I didn’t feel beautiful; I didn’t belong anywhere. I felt excluded by my white family - possibly because of who my mother was and I am the product. During my teens I wasn’t too fussed over make-up it wasn’t a big thing around me, too much of a tomboy, makeup wasn't a thing in my home so it didn’t affect me until I was about 18 and started to take an interest in make-up, purchasing magazines. Browsing the aisles and noticing that there were hardly any women of colour friendly shades, even for me. Foundation stopped about between 4-6 shades, all of which wouldn’t accommodate me unless I purchased 2, just to mix.

For years, when I got into makeup, I never wore foundation. I'd simply just do my eye makeup and lips to be honest, my skin didn't really need it looking back but just because I didn't then, doesn't mean others didn't. I think it took me until I was about 21 before I started using foundation. I didn’t realise at the time but this makeup wasn’t made for me at all – and neither was the ideal of beauty that I saw on T.V & magazines. It’s as if we don’t exist.
Through these popular magazines, the ads, hair & makeup recommendations were not aimed at young women as myself, in the UK nothing screamed and aimed their brands towards us - unless you purchased black hair and beauty magazines (which isn't a bad thing but once again excluded from the mainstream magazines)–– I began to realise, we’re the excluded party because our beauty isn’t ideal.

Now I know as someone with a lighter complexion besides the occasion when younger and while visiting Paris - This was the first time I'd experienced racial taunting as an adult. As I boarded the train, I was the only person of colour in the immediate 2 carriages and refused my seat by someone sitting in it, they made monkey noises at me and kept referring to me as one and ugly. After I kept insisting for them to give me my seat, they moved exclaiming they wouldn't want to sit anywhere near a monkey. During that journey until I left, I kept having to hear the remarks. It doesn't do much for your self-esteem. - I’ve not had it as hard as my darker complexioned sisters. At the same time, it’s still a problem because we have varied skin tones, undertones as women of colour and shouldn’t be excluded for that reason. The excuse that there’s no demand is bullshit; it doesn’t take more time to do darker foundations. The women of colour they have fronting campaign, majority have smaller features to look similar to their white counterpart. So although companies ‘try’ they still exclude more ethnic features. I feel the beauty industry thrives off manipulating women’s feelings, making us feel bad about ourselves, we need to change our ‘flaws’ that don’t fit into their standard and it seemed to show looking at the brands.

Sleek Makeup use to be called Sleek Cosmetics, it was very women of colour friendly and catered predominantly for Black Mixed Race and Asian women (their words), it use to be found in our hair stores, normally right by the counter. When Sleek Cosmetics went through its rebrand to become Sleek Cosmetics, it completely dropped the friendly aim towards women of colour, discontinued shades that were WOC friendly and started to cater more to others which left a lot of women of colour disappointed and began selling in Superdrug & now Boots but I do think the brand has over the years become very diverse. In all, the beauty industry is coming along but it's still got very far to go.
Unfortunately, we're not upheld as beauties, our features are beautiful when enhanced or on another race - not our own. When you're constantly reminded you're 'different'...'ugly'...& everything else that's thrown at you from young. You begin to try find someone to look up to, schools growing up weren't as diverse as they are now. When I started to be more aware of women and beauty, I looked at Jennifer Lopez, Aaliyah, Lisa Bonét and still do. There are so many women I look at because they’re beautiful, strong women & also seem to have souls that are positive, Erykah Badu, Taraji P Henson, Regina Hall, Rihanna, Lupita, there are so many beautiful women of colour to look up to and who are also using their position to collaborate with brands, hold positions as a spokeswoman and in Rihanna's case, developing a makeup line. We become our own bosses of our beauty, lives and businesses, instead of waiting to be told we are accepted.
I fight with that battle of seeing myself as beautiful, stuff from childhood seem to resonate into adulthood. Self-love is a lesson, we're not born knowing how to love, we learn by how we're treated, learning to love myself is to be more patient, kinder, compassionate and understanding of myself. Beauty is about embracing who I am. Beauty to me is to never compare myself to someone else. Flowers do not worry about another flower, they just bloom in their own time and space. Beauty to me, is more than skin deep, cliché but your positive personality can make you more appealing to anyone you come across. Beauty to me is having a soul that others vibe with, want to be around because my beauty is helping others to embrace and feel positive about themselves. It’s about standing in the mirror and saying to myself “This is what beauty is”. I now embrace my hairs versatility, my complexion because it's me.

Self-esteem building can start at home. I was told I was beautiful and fussed over but when you're seeing and hearing different from your peers, what your family or family friends say it becomes "but you're meant to say things like that...!".

I think brands can start with helping girls from in their teens by front campaigns to help self-esteem, by either keeping it up or building it. Letting them know that they're a beauty and to not be discouraged by a lot of the cultural appropriation that's going on, the white washing within the media & negative comments. Brands could also team up a lot more with positive figures from the community - by having ambassadors, who also have a story of their own and how they overcame them. There's so much more now in terms of the internet with exposure and it can be a good and bad thing but as long as there's more awareness, multi-cultural images and campaigns aimed at young girls hopefully they'll know to love themselves and to not feel they're less than & to always compare themselves to European beauty standards.

Have you ever felt you don't live up to the eurocentric beauty standards?


Grapefruit Lemon and Cedarwood Body Polish & Grapefruit Lemon and Cedarwood Body Butter complement each other well, not to be said that you cannot mix and match others from the range but for me, I enjoy the scent one after the next once I’ve left the shower. Very uplifting. The body polish contains fair trade Organic Sugar and Organic Glycerin that helps to gently and effectively lift dirt & remove dead skin to leave smoother and cleaner skin. I love a good sugar scrub, due to the glycerine with the Grapefruit Lemon and Cedarwood Body Polish, which is noticeable within the tin, it’s hydrating but also it’s a humectant meaning it attracts and locks in moisture, your new smooth skin will be moisturised and protected.

Grapefruit essential oil, cleanses, tones and supports healthy looking skin. Lemon essential oil has astringent and detoxifying properties, rejuvenating tired or dull looking skin but also assists in balancing skin by reducing excessive oil levels, it helps reduces the skins pore size by being an effective skin toner. Cedarwood essential oil, can promote healthy & clear skin with a calming affect with astringent properties it’ll benefit muscle and skin tone. Now while both of them contain these oils the Grapefruit Lemon and Cedarwood Body Butter which is whipped into a souffle texture this contains organic fairtrade Shea butter & organic Cocoa butter are intensive moisturisers, both of which I love and use them raw on my skin from time to time, nothing better. They're amazing to help irritated, dry skin - neither do I have but if you do, these butters are gorgeous, they leave the skin baby soft and with a healthy sheen. Also organic virgin coconut oil & organic sunflower oil, rich in Vitamin E, regenerates skin cells, making it great for skin with pigmentation, giving an even skin tone. The body butter is soft, melt as it touches the skin and absorbs with ease. As October started to creep in, the temperature has dropped and it's certainly chilly, making these an ideal product to help keep the skin clear, smooth, moisturised & protected.

Do you have a favourite bodycare product right now?


Conscious Skincare Grapefruit Lemon and Cedarwood Body Polish & Body Butter.

Halloween is very near, with so many outfit choices available from simple cat & witch outfits to over the top, I'm looking at you Heidi Klum, who when she has her Halloween parties, she always has some fun & creative outfits. That isn't always in someone's budget or artistic realm but if you do decide to go out with the children, friends whatever to get in the Halloween spirit, Toni&Guy have some ideas in the form of hair accessories.


Toni&Guy are helping with these hair accessories. Even though I don’t like spiders this Black Widow, hair grip I instantly fell in love with it, what’s creepier than a spider if you dislike them but this studded grip with white gems on the legs and black gems for the body and eyes make it a lot more pleasing to have a spider on the person.
-_______I started off by washing my hair as usual. – cleanse, conditioner, mask.
-_______Sectioning into 4 parts, I moisturised my hair while damp with black seed oil.
-_______Using the BaByLiss Big Hair styler, I began to dry and style my hair.
-_______Running the Toni & Guy Casual Radiating Tropical Elixir when finished to give extra shine to the hair.
-_______Last touches spritz over the styled hair with Toni & Guy Illuminating Hair Perfume.
-_______Pop the hair slide in where preferred.

More Hair Accessories from Toni&Guy

I think these appeal to the Rock Goddess in me. I live for black clothing & as someone once said I remind them of a mix of Kate Moss x Daria, so I'm a bit of heroin rock chic & grunge.
Pretty In Punk.
I had one similar from another brand in gold but this one is certainly larger and giving more of a statement with the silver, gold spikes and multiple chains.
Hard As Nails.
The spiked hairband, very different - I haven't come across one like this before. It has a mixture of gunmetal, silver and gold spikes that just hang and give a gentle sound to their movement.


Onto the nitty gritty. Being that I love horror films, this time of year it's like my holiday. Being able to indulge more in the scary films and loving all the S/FX. I just really enjoy Halloween. Sue me!
-_______Ben Nye Death Flesh as a base and I used blues and white from the MakeUp Forever Flash Palette's.
-_______For the eyes a lot of reds & oranges from the Morphe 350M palettes.
-_______Using a taupe to highlight and sink in the eye socket.
-_______Sleek Makeup Eau La La Liner in Rouge for the waterline.
-_______LA Splash Lip Couture in Malevolent & Vampire mixed.
-_______For the neck, I created a silicone mould and freehanded the cut with the silicone - leave to dry.
-_______Add yellows, greens, purples and reds for some rotting flesh.
-_______Inside coloured it red and black and stuck clotted blood and runny bloods inside. Finish by splattering blood all over.


Halloween x Toni&Guy.

Today is my 8th blogiversary, I've passed that 7 year itch. Certainly didn’t think I’d still be going at it for 8 years, crazy looking back on it. Besides school, this must be the longest thing I’ve stuck to continuously. Don’t know if it’s a good or bad thing. I’ve had various thoughts about blogging every year, always very up and down but I think I’m getting to a state of contentment.

When I began I had no clue really what I was really seeking to do, it definitely was a blog of my life. The choice to blog came after a month of rest from an ectopic pregnancy which led me into depression, anxiety and agoraphobia. Yes, it was so bad, going into my garden would bring on an attack. I think I’ve been depressed for many years, from the start of my teens after a traumatic incident, although I’m not really over it, I’ve got on with life since then until the ectopic pregnancy.

Dealing with depression isn’t easy, anyone can become depress, to an extent we all get anxiety before we’re going to do something unfamiliar we get that knot in our stomach, sickly feeling due to the state of unknown – just for some, it’s a lot worse and crippling. As I started this blog, I wrote in depth about how I was feeling, what I was experiencing, even going as far as documenting my time while I was in a mental health unit for the above problems. My one regret is deleting those, I deleted a lot of my posts, when blogging got to its height from 2011, there was a lot of ‘this is how you should blog’ type articles floating about and it was all about tidying up the blogs archive, make your blog about one topic – this is why now I take “blogging rules” with a pinch of salt and do as I please because I’m not forcing anybody to read my blog but I do appreciate those who do. I guess, I stopped writing about it and how I was feeling because it’s not everyone’s cup of tea but then not everybody can be a happy bunny daily.

I’ve been quite lucky that I’ve got friends & family who I can speak too. I’ve noticed widely that mental health within the black community is dismissed a lot. You’ll hear jokes in programmes that ‘Black people don’t go to therapy; we go to church.’ – ‘Black people don’t get depressed.’ Which is bullshit and it annoying. My mum watches programmes about mental health frequently, I think it’s also a way for her to understand. BBC3 aired “Being Black, Going Crazy?” Synopsis: “Black people in the UK are more likely to be diagnosed with mental health problems and to be sectioned. But just why is the community facing such a crisis?”

Then I saw the tweets *rolls eyes* black people on twitter calling it ‘a conspiracy’ … ‘Why does there have to be a negative programme about black people’ … ‘They want people to view Black people as weak’ … ‘Where’s the programmes about successful black people’. My question is: Why does everything have to be a conspiracy? Mental illness does not discriminate and it’s this attitude why it makes it hard for black people to speak up on these issues as they’re afraid people will look at them as less than and weak and to be honest to stand up and say ‘I need help!’ takes a lot of strength because of what you’re going to have to face from ignorant people.

I have been to therapy, first when I was 13 for a minute, then again at 20 for 7 years and now I’m in a new form of therapy which isn’t benefiting me for the better unfortunately. The past month, I’ve been unhappy and felt worse than when I started & to cope developed an eating disorder which is the first time I’m opening up about – some forms of therapy isn’t for everyone but I’m continuously trying to self-heal myself. Like others, I can be pretty hard on myself. Instead of noticing my progress, it's so much easier to beat myself up & say I should of done this - should of done that etc. Taking the time to be grateful but also proud of my accomplishments is something I'm trying to do a lot more. With my anxiety & agoraphobia, alone, I was the one who went to London daily to a make-up school to become a makeup artist, I started up my driving lessons again, passed my theory and practical first time - pat on the back. I'm proud I can say my blog is award winning but I think the award within itself is the fact that, 8 years later, I'm still nurturing it. Depression with or without help, it can be frustrating several days of the week but challenges are. I’d love to be able to do more to raise awareness of mental health in communities – especially within ethnic communities (for reasons above). Maybe that’s my next step?