Thursday, 29 November 2012

An update and a question

I've been so ill this week! I think I have the flu but I'm not entirely sure - all that I know is that I've had a temperature and major flu-y/cold-y symptoms.  It's kinda gross! Anyway, if you follow me on Twitter you'll have heard me complaining for days! Feeling a little better today but still so weak; I played with the cats for 10 mins this morning and had to take a hour long nap to recover!! Weird.

Anyway, enough self pity! I got a Groupon for a local stables, and redeemed it on Sunday.  It poured with rain the whole time (probably why I'm ill now ha) but I barely noticed cos it was AWESOME! I had an hour lesson and, bearing in mind I haven't had a proper ride for like 18 months and I had only cantered once before in my life, I felt I kept up pretty damn well! Afterwards, I went on an hour long private hack through the woodland, and loved it - apart from when I got hit in the face by a massive tree branch!  
I love riding so much, and been horse-crazy since I could talk, but my family *glares at parents* would never let me have riding lessons, so I'm just making up for lost time.  For Christmas, Mike is getting me a years worth of riding lessons *squee* so I'm so excited for 2013 right now!!

That's enough horsey stuff, since I bet that like 99% of you bbloggers aren't remotely interested I'm sure ;) In my first effort to SAVE MY SKIN I bought some Naked hair products and a La Roche Posay moisturiser.  

Excuse the special effects for Instagram! 'Naked Style More Volume Body Building Mousse', 'Naked Care Mild Shampoo' and 'La Roche Posay Hydraphase UV Intense Light'

I don't like to talk about this much, but for the last 10 months I have suffered from a very sensitive scalp.  Not dandruff, not nits, just really itchy! I've been meaning to get my hands on this Naked Care Mild Shampoo for months now and I don't know why I waited so long! I've used it twice now since Sunday and I have no itchiness or discomfort at all anymore :) It was 2 for £6 on Naked products so I treated myself to the More Volume Mousse after reading rave reviews.  It left my hair so soft and shiny, no crisp after effects like some mousses have, and with lots of volume :)

I was actually after the La Roche Posay Hydraphase Intense Serum, but picked up this Hydraphase UV Intense Light moisturiser because Boots didn't seem to have my original choice.  This is where I should read labels - I have very dry skin, but the UV Intense Light is for normal/combination skin.  Oops! That being said, the hyaluronic acid in it seems to be keeping my skin very moisturised, so panic over! Hyaluronic acid is a very clever molecule as it can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water, which makes it uber hydrating and keeps your skin looking plump and younger.  My only gripe with this product is when you get it in your eyes (which I always seem to, even though it never happens with any other product ever?!) it stings like crazy, presumably because of the chemical sunscreen ingredients.

Those are just my initial thoughts on these products - I've only had them for 5 days so I'll do a more indepth review on them in a couple of months!

Now my question is this:

As you may or may not know, I kind of ran away from this blog a month or so ago, as I was dissatisfied with bblogging and didn't know what direction to take this blog in! Right now, its a total mix of personal (lifestyle I guess) posts alongside beauty and fashion bits.  Is there anyway you guys would like me to improve on this? What posts of mine do you prefer to read? Is there anything you would like me to write about more, or less?

Please give me your thoughts - by comment below, on twitter or even email!  I would really appreciate them :)

Tali xxx

Friday, 23 November 2012

[BEAUTY] Resolutions

So I've been AWOL again .. sorry!! Life has been a lil hectic at the mo, but I do have some good news! I found out this week that I won a scholarship to do a PhD while I carry on working! The pros: I am doing a supermegawickedAWESOME project of my choosing, don't get a drop in salary, get to be Dr Tali and do what I've always wanted to do :) The cons: It's going to take SIX YEARS, which for some reason terrifies me haha

Other than that I've been ceilidh-ing, working, stable-ing, snowboarding, house-shopping and doing plenty of sleeping! And I've also been thinking about my current beauty/skincare regime a LOT.

The good old days 3 years ago (all I was wearing on my complexion was High Beam!)

See, I used to have amazing skin.  Not sure if it was the glowing radiance of youth that waned (come back!), or the abuse I put my face through a couple years ago.. either way I want it back!!  Currently, and I don't want this to turn into a whinelist, I currently have rosacea, broken capillaries, contact dermatitis, discoid ezcema and just generally dry and dull skin that is highly breakout prone! I mean, c'mon, this is not a fair deal is it! Thing is, all this only started within the last couple years...I was writing up my masters thesis and under a lot of stress, and that's when my rosacea made its guest appearance.  I retaliated by using AHAs, BHAs, retinol and vitamin C serums daily.  I got waay too much into skincare, and any new-release products when straight on my face.  Needless to say my skin didn't really appreciate that and has since been dull, very sensitive and blemish prone.  I have yoyo-ed between high end expensive products and cheap/basic drugstore items.  Nothing I have tried has really helped.

Well that's the past.  Now to my future - my resolutions.  

I want to get my skin back to the glowy flawless state it was once in.  For Christmas I have asked Mike to buy me a Digital Skin Analysis session, which "captures multi-spectral photos of the face, examining the complexion for wrinkles, spots, pores, texture, bacteria, sun damage, pigmented spots and acne".  I want to use this session to find out what my skin is really like, and why it is so finicky at the moment, and then get recommendations for what products to use.

Another plan of mine is to spend the next 12 months not wearing any makeup on my complexion!!! Terrifying I know. I will wear mascara and eyeliner, and go back to wearing eyeshadows when my eyelids stop being so flakey (ew I know).  And. That's. It.  *gulp* No blusher, primer, foundation, powder ... nada.  I want my skin to look good by itself again, and I'm not going to do that by clogging up my pores etc.

I know that using too many products make my skin sensitive and sore.  But I also know that just cleansing and moisturising and nothing else makes my skin dull and breakout prone! Currently I'm just using Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish and Amie Skin Shield and my skin is still not happy. I want to find a happy medium!

So that's my three-phase plan (wow I've been writing too many formal applications lately...).  I'm going to give myself a year from today, keep you all informed of any progress and see where I'm at on 23rd November 2013! Hopefully my skin will be a lot calmer and clearer by then..

Wish me luck!

Tali xxx

Monday, 5 November 2012

LIFE: Four years ago today....

Mike and I went on our first date..  He was one of my managers at my part time retail job, and I used to joke that he was "the guy I was in love with at work" to my friends.  Not wanting to sound big headed or anything, but I always got every guy I ever liked, but Mike never gave away how he felt about me, which kept me guessing!! At the time I was dating 5 guys simultaneously, but broke it off with all of them because I didn't feel the way about them that I felt about Mike!! Then we both started spending a lot more time together - I introduced him to tapas; he introduced me to action movies.  

Then one night - November 5th 2008 in fact - I couldn't take it any longer, I looked at him one evening and said " you like me?".  And the rest was history!! Our first 9 months was a whirlwind - we were both living at our parents houses due to circumstances so we had $$ to burn.  I swear we lived off popcorn and La Tasca those first few months, as well as £3 pizza from Pizzaland in Selly Oak, where they knew our order before we even had chance to open our mouths.  It was love, we just drank up each others company - didn't need anyone else, didn't want anyone to intrude on our bubble.  

In July 2009 (I don't know the date as we were on holiday ha) he got down on one knee in my favourite place in the whole world - a valley that nobody else seems to know about in Andalucía, rural Spain.  We were going to run away together, back to Australia where I had spent the previous year.  Mike has a severe flying phobia, but we were going to go via the Trans Siberian railway, and then travel through Asia. 

Then reality hit - I didn't get the grades I had hoped for at Uni, so my parents offered to pay for a Masters to compensate.  We didn't move to Australia, but we moved to Nottingham instead where we got our first flat together.  One year later, and my Masters was over and we found ourselves further north up still - Scotland, where I got a 5 year contract and my dream job.  Two years down the line and we are making a home for ourselves up here, but haven't lost the desire to leave the UK - although I think we have now settled on Canada.  Logically, although perhaps less romantically, we are getting ourselves and our careers sorted - Mike's at college and preparing to apply to Uni; I'm working in an amazing field and about to sort out my part time PhD application.  

Our dreams are still alive though - we still aim high and want the world and nothing less.  And although after four years things sometimes get tough, we still want to spend the rest of our lives together.  And I know that seems like a simple thing to say, I really mean it - he is more than my boyfriend/fiancé - he is my best friend and knows me better than I know myself.  We have come a long way - not just 'us' but also individually.  

I'll stop writing now, because this mush could potentially go on forever, but here some pictures:


Tali xxx

Saturday, 3 November 2012

MEMEME: Life etc

Hey! Ok so I had a little bloggerlife crisis and made a new blog which I wanted to be purely lifestyle, and therefore separate from this blog.  I wasn't sure if I would ever come back to this blog again, as I was getting tired/bored of the whole f/bblogging world.

And yet here I am, typing this out!

I have now come to realise I do still like being a girly girl (albeit with a gritty edge!).  I like clothes and makeup and dyeing my hair and talking about all of the above.  I also like blogging about more personal things - what's going on in my life, what are my thoughts etc etc.  I realise this isn't for everyone - a lot of bloggers are quite hesitant to "reveal their true identity", or on the other hand, don't really get anything from people blabbering on about their real lives! So if you fall in the latter group, you may as well leave because I want to incorporate ALL aspects of my life and interest into this blog!

Still here? ;)

Weeell now, let's have a mini life update!

(1) It's mine and Mike's 4 year anniversary on Monday!!!! It's hard to believe that we've spent half of that time living in Scotland (was my 2 year workaversary on the 1st November) - things are going past too quickly!!  For our anniversary, instead of the usual dinner date/flowers kinda thing, we decided to do something we've been talking about for months.  That's right kids, I booked us in for a 3 hour intensive snowboarding course at Snowfactor in Braehead!! I am so psyched.  
We are so excited that we went to the snow/xtreme sports exhibition event in Glasgow a couple weekends ago to find out a bit more about the related culture/community and to get a bit more info.  I am both nervous and mega-enthusiastic about Monday now - I really want to be good at it, but I'm always lame at new things hahaha.... I'll keep you posted!!

(2)  Works been full-on the last 6 weeks or so - had a massive project on, and I won't bore you with all the lab/molecular genetics talk but it's been quite intense! Glad to have it out of the way now.  Oh yeah and BIG NEWS - I'm going to apply for a PhD!!!! As a member of staff at my university, I can get a part-time PhD funded while I carry on working!
I have a great boss who is really happy and supportive of anything I can do, and by doing a PhD I will get rid of the glass ceiling I have been concerned about in my career.  The scary side is that as it's part time its 6 years long, which is a massive commitment!!! But it'll be worth it and I'm mega excited :)

I guess those are the only things going on in my life which can be classified as major news, but life in general is going really well.  
Starting to get my life back in gear; more of a social life (which has been an issue for a while thanks to me moving around the UK too much and being too far from my friends!), being more active (hot yoga = amaaaazeballs), loving helping out at the stables still and am looking to get riding lessons which is something I've wanted since I could talk pretty much! 
I went shopping last weekend as you'll know if you follow my twitter/instagram, which was fun :) 
Mike is doing Movember this year - 3 days in and he's already getting a 'stache!! His donation page is here if you want to help him kick prostate and testicular cancers' ass! My grandfather is in the later stages of prostate cancer so I full-heartedly support Mike in looking like a douche for a month!

That's about everything I can think of right now.  What's new in your life? :)

Tali xxx
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