18 September 2017

How I made my uni room a more positive space

For the past two years I've lived in university halls, in their constant state of pre-drinking and piles of dirty plates. It was an experience, to say the least. Sometimes a bad one (this introvert does not enjoy being woken up at 3am on a weekly basis by students daring to have fun.) But mainly it was an incredible one. I met some of my closest friends and I grew in ways that I didn't know I needed. Those annoyingly tiny bedroom walls saw a lot of positive change. Plus, there's just something about that communal accommodation spirit that can't be beaten.

I still find myself humming our college chant to myself now without thinking about it!

However, that chapter in my life is over. A few days ago I moved into my first off-campus house with my favourite people in the whole world. It's already starting to feel like home. The fairy lights are up, the slippers are out and, most excitingly, we have a washing machine in our kitchen so I no longer have to trudge to a laundrette. I'm pretty much living a life of luxury! The whole experience is already worlds away from being in halls. So, whilst I'm not as close to the library as I was last year, I'm happy to sacrifice that for the sense of homely cosiness that I get from being in a proper house.


13 September 2017

The books I think every uni student should read

In less than a week I will be back living in London, fending for myself and preparing for the start of my last year at uni. Frankly, it seems like a lifetime ago that I did a weekly shop so, even though I am beyond excited to be reunited with my independence, I know that it will be a bit of a shock to the system. I think I might have actually forgotten how to write an essay. Or successfully make it to a 9am lecture on time.

So, with term quickly approaching I thought I would get back into the motivated mindset the only way I know how: Self-help books. These bad boys are some old favourites that always work their magic for me. Not only do they leave me all buzzy with inspiration, but they help to keep me as calm as possible as deadlines approach and remind me to get my organisation on.

Yay for not stress-crying by the end of week one!


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9 September 2017

Blogging, haul culture and fast fashion

At the age of 16 my favourite way to spend my time was clothes shopping. I was a full-on fashion blogger at that time in my life, popping out OOTDs and H&M hauls like there was no tomorrow. However, unlike all of the 'successful' influencers that I saw getting invited to fashion shows and being gifted Mulberry bags, I was on a waitressing wage of less than £4 an hour. So, I stuck to the knock-off Lita boots and the sale rails of my local Primark. I focused less on quality (and, ya know, whether I actually liked an item) and more on getting as much as humanly possible for my money. I would leave shops with bags full of items that were ill fitting, telling myself that I would "DIY it" or "cover it with a cardi" to turn into into something actually wearable. But more often than not they would just sit in my draws, never worn.

Basically, my shopping habits consisted of everything I have now come to loathe about the clothing industry. Which is one of the main reasons I try not to get too far up on my high horse now that I'm on a journey to becoming a more ethical consumer. Who am I to police people's spending when I was fast fashion's ideal customer a matter of months ago?


7 September 2017

Girl Love #12

There are two times of the year when I feel my most inspired. For about 30 days I seem to gain a deeper sense of self and have a pretty much other-worldly drive towards my goals. The first of those months is, obviously, January in all of its "new year, new me" glory. The second is September. I just don't think it will ever lose that back-to-school feeling for me. To be honest, I'm waiting for my Mum to take me to WHSmiths to buy a new pencil case and planner any day now...

So, since "sort your life out" season is in full swing, it seemed only right to put together the latest edition of Girl Love and showcase two amazing women that I think are crushing it right now. These are the ladies whose content has left me feeling all types of inspired recently. And I promise, if you're not in the new term spirit yet, they will certainly get you there.


3 September 2017

10 moments I loved on my trip to Kalamata

As I write this post I'm sat in one of those uncomfortable metal airport chairs, with a flight delay between me and a cup of proper English tea. I can see Greece in all of its 30° glory through the window and, even though I'm technically still here, I'm already missing it. And this sub-arctic aircon isn't making it any easier.

So, since it doesn't look like I'm going anywhere any time soon, I thought I would take this unfortunate opportunity to finally tell you all about what I've been up to on my month-long trip to Greece. Every cloud, eh?

When I first got here 5 weeks ago I had grand plans of posting every other day. Then the beach happened, holiday brain kicked in and I actually let myself relax. In fact, I barely picked up my laptop throughout the entirety of the holiday. Hence, it's been pretty quiet around this parts and I now have the mammoth task of documenting my whole incredible trip into one blog post. But hey, your girl needs something positive to look back on when uni stress is determined to kill her in a few months. Plus, I hope that this post acts as a lil life update to make up for my absence and a helpful guide for anyone travelling to Kalamata too.


31 August 2017

Favourite Things: August 2017

August, you have been superb. In fact, I'd go as far as saying that you have been the best month of 2017 so far. Lazy beach days spent reading, nights out eating gyros and Sunday trips to the market have all reminded me why I love Greece so much. Really it was impossible not to have an incredible month when the whole of it was spent in such an incredible country.

On top of that it's just been nice to take a step back from working so hard so much of the time. When I arrived in Greece I had grand plans of writing weekly updates plus other blog posts throughout the month. But as you can see by my sparse posting, that definitely didn't happen. For the first time in what feels like forever I've not been thinking about what content will be out and when. I've just been chilling. And trust me, that's a pretty big deal when you're talking about me, a perpetual stresser and productivity addict. It's just been nice to be lazy. To not set an alarm. To have my only real stress being whether I applied enough bug spray.

The trip is coming to end now (no, you're crying!), so a little post about everything I've been up to on my holibobs is certainly in order. But until then I thought I would share with you my August favourites: All of the things that helped to make this such a bloody lovely month.



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28 August 2017

My Favourite Positive Affirmations

Over the past few months I've really started to get in touch with my more spiritual side. After years of fighting the urge, I've finally learnt about crystals, meditation and, perhaps most importantly, the power of positive affirmations and manifesting. Yep, I've gone full-on hippie. I now implement rituals in my daily life that help to keep me centred and I'd say that I'm probably the most calm I've ever been.

I'm by no means an expert yet, but the improvements I've seen in my life are immense. Anyone that knows me will tell you that I've always been a stresser. But these days I like to think that I'm growing out of that. Spirituality has helped me to challenge the habits that have a negative impact on my life. It might not work for everyone, but it certainly works for me.

As I said, it hasn't always been like this. Frankly, I wrote it off as bullshit that I was far too good for for a long time. I used to scoff at the power of words and principles that I now live by. Ain't life funny?

So, I guess this post is a "soz for being so closed minded, universe" kinda post, where I talk about my favourite affirmations and why I now say them on the daily.



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19 August 2017

My natural summer essentials

 I love the heat, but the heat does not love me. Ever since I was a kid I've suffered from heat rash and frizzy hair as soon as summer hits. However, it will always be my favourite season. I will bask in the sunshine and bathe in SPF 50 until the day I die. I guess it's true what they say: Love hurts (and itches quite a bit too).

Thanks to this love of the warm weather and skin that simultaneously throws a bitch fit because of it, I've had to learn some ways of dealing with the heat. Consider this post to be the 2.0 of last year's post "How to make the heat your bitch". I've spent enough nights tossing and turning to have learnt some new techniques. Which is lucky really since I'm currently in the midst of a month-long trip to Greece.

A little birdie tells me that my chums in the UK aren't having the best weather at the moment but hey, you can't always be #relevant if you schedule posts... I guess this will come in handy if you're off on holiday though. Or, if not, keep it bookmarked until summer 2018!


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9 August 2017

3 documentaries that changed my life

I'm not a TV person. And when I am, it's usually so long after everyone else was watching the show that I can even safely navigate Twitter without having to worry about spoilers. I wait until a show has been heavily recommended (and is a strong match on my Netflix account and will solve all of my worldly problems) before even clicking play on that first episode. I guess you could say that I have programme commitment issues. I mean, I haven't even watched any Game of Thrones yet...

However, when I do get into a TV programme, I really get into it. Not only do I watch them, I re-watch them and tell all of my friends to watch them too. Usually those shows are documentaries (though I do make exceptions for Jane the Virgin and Love Island). Since TV isn't the way that I wind down, I don't mind having my beliefs shaken up a bit when I sit down on my sofa. In fact, I would go as far as saying that most of my favourite documentaries have changed my life.

These four shows have completely revolutionised the way I shop, talk and see the world. They're all under two hours long but they've all had a lasting impact.


4 August 2017

My Summer Reading List

Unless you read my twitter bio, you probably wouldn't know that I'm about to go into my third year of studying for a BA in English Literature. I mean, considering this is a lifestyle blog and I spend 75% of my life reading, it's a fact that is pretty well hidden among my other passions. Aside from the occasional mention in a favourites posts or an ode to self-help, my absolute adoration of books could very easily be missed online.

The truth is that I don't write about books on my blog that often because it's what I spend the rest of my time doing. I don't want to feel like I'm about to upload something to Turn-It-In every time I hit publish.

However, summer always reinvigorates my thirst for literature. Stepping away from the academic side of things for a few months reminds me that I actually do enjoy academic stimulation. In fact, I think I need it to stay sane. And since I haven't written an essay in months, I'm starting to get the urge to write about books here on my little corner of the internet. So, to fill that void I thought I would share with you all of the books I've packed in my suitcase for my trip to Greece. It's a sweet little mix of course books for 3rd year and 'pleasure reading' that I can't wait to get stuck into.

Me, a book and the beach. Name a better trio. I'll wait...


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1 August 2017

My Greek Bucket List

For those of you that don't follow me on Twitter and therefor haven't been victim to my rolling countdown: Today I'm heading off to spend a month in Greece. In fact, as this post goes live I should be in the air, loving life with some seriously overpriced plane food.

If you've been around these parts for a while now then you may be getting a case of deja vu. Yep, I spent a month in Greece last summer too. I'm lucky enough to have a boyfriend that grew up there, so we're using my last proper summer holiday before the end of university as an opportunity to visit his family again. And since the last time around was so incredible, I am more than a little bit excited to get back to what now feels like a second home to me.

In 2016 I was visiting Greece for the first time ever which meant that my bucket list mainly consisted of the essentials: Drinking Ouzo, visiting the Acropolis and eating as much Greek food as possible. I'm happy (except in the case of the Ouzo which is vile) to say that I ticked them all off. I even documented it in this little mini-series. However, despite the fact that I had a month there, I left the country with a whole new list of things that I didn't get the chance to do. So it seemed only right to compile another list for this year's adventure.


30 July 2017

July: Favourite Things

July has been a month of getting shit done.

In a matter of days I fly off to Greece to once again spend a month soaking up the sun (and the gyros) before heading back to university in September. Even the thought of all of the feta I'm going to eat is making me want to cry tears of happiness. However, that kind of trip also requires a lot of organisation. So, I've spent the last 30 days bulk taking pictures, scheduling blog posts and squeezing out every last ounce of my creative juices in an attempt to give myself time to do glorious nothing whilst on my holibobs. On top of that I went to Yorkshire for a week for a writing job and have been trying to fit in some dissertation research here and there. But I ain't complaining because you all know that productivity is a little bit like a drug to me.

You have a lot of holiday spam coming your way, my chums. So, before you all mute my Instagram stories and avoid Curly and Wordy until September, let's talk about some of the things that made July lovely.

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28 July 2017

Falling off the ethical consumer wagon

In the last week I've made some of my first high street purchases since January. After months of scouring charity shops and eBay, learning how to up-cycle old items and wondering whether my student budget can afford to invest in some of the incredible ethical brands out there, I've finally found something that's beaten me: Sandals. That is, sandals that don't look like they might give me verrucas, survived the war or require me to sell a kidney. So, I caved. I bought not one but two pairs from Primark in the same sort of spirit as 'well, I've already eaten a muffin today so I may as well get that Big Mac for dinner'. They were even on sale, which simultaneously makes me want to fist pump and cry. I left the shop feeling very emotionally confused. But hey, at least they don't use plastic bags, right? RIGHT?

Up until now my ethical consumer journey has been relatively pain free. Apart from a few bits of underwear here and there (seriously, if you know an ethical and pretty underwear brand that doesn't cost the absolute earth, let a girl know), transitioning to 'slow fasion' has been pretty easy. Frankly, I've been riding my high horse all over town and wondering why I ever felt the need to shop on the high street.

Then summer rolled around and forced me to realise that I'm not as out of my old habits as I thought. I may want to be ethical, but years of conditioning and seeing the 52 'micro-seasons' of fast fashion changing before me has clearly influenced the way that I think. With a holiday coming up, I've never felt so much pressure to buy.


26 July 2017

Girl Love #11

It seemed only right to type up this post with my salt lamps on, a cup of homemade yogi tea and an amethyst by my side. Since I'm going to be talking about spirituality, I thought I may as well really embody it. And I have to be honest, this sure as hell beats my usual setup.

This month's edition of Girl Love is dedicated to some of the amazing women that have helped me on my spiritual journey over the last few months. Since May I kind of feel like I've become a new person. That's not to say that I'm now a mindful Buddhist who only eats kale and can meditate for 5 hours at a time, but I am much more aware of myself. I feel like my teen years were for building up my character and that my twenties are for chiseling away at it to find the most true version of me.

However, I definitely couldn't have kicked off this journey on my own. So, it's time to celebrate three incredible women who have helped change my life and might help change yours too!

Girl Love: Online spirituality resources

22 July 2017

Usher, herpes and STI stigma

A few days ago news broke that Usher has herpes. The internet went wild. Jokes, online hate and uniformed opinions made up about 75% of my timeline and I've been wondering how to write this blog post ever since.

Usher's case acts as the perfect example of the way that STIs are stigmatised and the way that herpes specifically is blown massively out of proportion. His name was being mentioned in tweets that also discussed R-Kelly, alleged rapist and paedophile, literally because he's contracted a virus. Had it been almost any other kind of virus his situation would probably warrant sympathy. In fact, herpes highlights the way that adding sex into the equation completely changes public opinion. You get cold sores (HSV1)? Aw that sucks, but it's totally normal! You have genital herpes (HSV2)? That's disgusting and irresponsible. They are literally two strains of the same virus! 70% of the population carries that virus, although many remain undiagnosed! Both can be painful, both can be unsightly during outbreaks and both remain in your system for the whole of your life. And yet, because one of them happens to be contracted on the genitals as opposed to the mouth, it carries a huge stigma. Because one is transferred during sex it becomes newsworthy.

Usher, Herpes stigma

19 July 2017

My Experience with Impostor Syndrome

The past year has been the most successful of my life so far. I've finished my Second Year of university with a First. I landed some amazing sponsored content opportunities with brands that I love and share ethics with. I've just come back from a week in Yorkshire for a writing job that I would never have expected to be able to do even six months ago.

And yet, when asked yesterday what I do for a living I said "Oh I'm a waitress".

I haven't worked in a resturant for over two years and for the past 12 months blogging and writing have been my job. So even I was surprised when those words left my mouth. Not because there's anything wrong with waitressing, but because it's not my reality and I for some reason felt the need to pretend that it was.

I feel like that situation sums up my relationship with work pretty well: I don't feel like it's real. I feel like it's all a dream. Or maybe like I'm being pranked and someone is about to jump out and say "LOL you didn't really think you were qualified or talented or pretty enough to do this did you?" at any moment. Basically, I have a huge case of impostor syndrome and I've only just realised it.

Impostor Syndrome: My Experience

17 July 2017

How to make having a UTI slightly more bearable

Over the past couple of years I've become rather well acquainted with UTIs. In fact, I think they like me because they seem to be treating my urinary tract somewhat like a holiday home.

If you've never had a urine infection before then 1. I kind of want to punch you out of sheer jealousy and 2. Please tell me if there's some kind of urethra goddess that you sacrifice to because I am so on board with that. If you have had one - and one in five women have - I totally sympathise. For some reason I'm just very prone to the bastards. I've been through the burning that makes you think your bladder was formed in the fiery depths of hell. I've sat on the toilet for twenty minutes at a time. I've wondered what on earth women did to deserve this kind of life. Trust me, I know the struggle and you're not alone.

On the plus side though, this little love affair I've had with E. Coli means that I can now sense a urine infection from a mile off. As soon as I get that tingle (if you know the tingle, you know the tingle) I can crack open my tried and tested methods for getting rid of them. And most of the time I stop them before they become anything serious whatsoever.

How to get rid of a UTI

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11 July 2017

My favourite essential oils (and what I use them for)

Over the past year I like to think that I've transitioned from essential oil novice to (almost) expert. For those of you that don't know, as well as keeping my lil' corner of the internet updated, I blog over at Tender Essence about all things essential oils. From DIYs to beginners guides, we've got you covered. One of the perks of that job is being constantly surrounded by the oils and exploring a tonne of different ways to use them. I even made soap all by myself!

It's been a game changing experience, my friends. These days I use essential oils on a daily basis to help me stay calm, centred and focused. Plus, they just smell bloody lovely. So, even though I've spoken about how I use them on my period and how to use them to up your self-care game, I thought that today I would share with you a more comprehensive list of all of my absolute favourite essential oils.

The essentials of essential oils

9 July 2017

My self-care travel essentials

As this post goes live I am on my way to Yorkshire. Yep, that's right. This Kentish girl isn't partaking in her usual Sunday morning routine of absolutely bugger all, but instead woke up at 5:30am this morning to get her butt up North. For the next week I'm staying in a hotel for work (is this what adulthood feels like?) on a project that I can't wait to share with you all very soon! It's all rather exciting, but also a little bit terrifying simply because I'm a massive homebody. I'm not one of those bloggers who whizzes between Thailand and Paris. I spend 90% of my time writing posts in bed with a cuppa beside me and, honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way.

I love traveling, but I also get very homesick very quickly, which is why I have to be mindful of what I pack. Essentially my suitcase becomes a home away from home.

How to practice self-care whilst traveling

8 July 2017

How my relationship with health and fitness has changed

When I was 16 I went to the gym for the first time. It was one of those really swanky ones where everyone is wearing LuLu Lemon and looks like they lunged their way out of the womb. There was literally a 'café' (I use the word loosely) that sold nothing but protein shakes and smoothies that kind of looked like sewage water. So, when I rocked up in my over sized Beyoncé tour t-shirt it's safe to say that I felt a little bit out of place. I didn't really have any idea what I was doing so I just headed straight to the treadmill, whacked it up to ten and proceeded to actually feel like I was going to keel over after 4 minutes. Fun times. I probably only lasted about 15 minutes in total before deciding that the gym wasn't for me. And feeling thankful that I had only spent my waitressing wages on a day membership.

Even up until six months ago that experience still encapsulated my relationship with exercise: It wasn't for me. Every now and then I would get a burst of motivation and do a few weeks of yoga or some Youtube dance aerobic classes, but nothing ever stuck. I genuinely thought that people who said shit like "the gym is my therapy" were extremely toned liars. Nobody likes crunches, right?


5 July 2017

Conscious living wishlist

Back at the beginning of 2017 I made the resolution to become more aware of where my money goes. At the time, that mainly meant not funding animal testing and shopping as locally as possible, but since then I've become even more aware of the ways that I can improve my rather shitty consuming habits.

Now, let's get one thing very clear: I'm definitely not a vegan, zero-waste goddess who goes litter picking in her free time. However, I am making changes one small step at a time. And that's what's important. When you suddenly become aware of how much convenience is put on a pedestal in our society, it can actually seem a bit overwhelming and you might feel like you have to change every aspect of your life immediately. That's great if you can do that, but if you have to take things a bit more slowly that's also absolutely fine.

I for one am focusing on being a better person than I was last month, instead of judging myself on other ethical bloggers. So, this lil' wishlist post is both an excuse for me to get excited about some of the things I can invest in to be less wasteful and also a reminder that, right now, I do still have some rather wasteful habits. Hey, I'll get there eventually!

Zero Waste Wishlist


3 July 2017

How to make Traditional Yogi Tea

As anybody who follows me on Pinterest will be able to tell you, June was the month that I swiftly transitioned from "slight hippie" to "full hippie". I even bought crystals and dedicated myself to doing yoga and meditation every single day. I think it was kind of inevitable that I would reach this point considering I've been attracted to the world of spirituality for pretty much as long as I can remember, but now that I'm here I'm excited to show aspects of it to you.

So, yes, today I am sharing a recipe with you all. But no, that's not just because I've seen the success of Deliciously Ella and decided to jump right on board the food blogger train. This little cup of gloriousness is actually part of a wider shift my life has been making. Yogi Tea has become a part of my morning routine and creating it is just so much more mindful than chucking a PG Tips bag into a mug. It takes more than 20 seconds, so making it hasn't just become a case of making something super delicious, but of having half an hour to meditate on life whilst making my house smell absolutely bomb at the same time. I did warn you that I've gone full hippie...


1 July 2017

Favourite Things: June

I completely forgot how punctuating the end of each month with a favourites post makes you realise just how fast the time is passing. How have I already been home from uni for three weeks? How is it nearly July? How is it 2pm and I've only just eaten breakfast?

On the plus side, June has been bloody lovely. It was a month that was permeated with that "wow I've actually finished uni for the year" feeling and I've loved having more time to spend with the people I love and doing the things that I enjoy. Unsurprisingly, that's also meant that I've accumulated a fair few favourites for this month, since I've been doing things that don't solely revolve around essays. So, because I'm turning into a proper blogger who is totes reliable, I'm back with this month's instalment of Favourite Things.


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28 June 2017

The problem with 'The Girlboss mentality'


Throughout my teenage years I called myself a "feminist" without hesitation, attempting to fight misogyny one tweet at a time. However, with seven years of wearing that label under my belt, its safe to say that I've made a few mistakes. And by a few I mean a bloody lot. I've learnt that feminism isn't just about picking people up on their double standards online (although that can be fun too), but about constantly listening to those that dont often get a voice within society, or even a voice within a movement created to support equality. I'm learning, I'm growing into my intersectional feminist shoes and, even though I still make ill-judged comments from time to time, I'm trying.

With that in mind, I decided today that I wanted to call myself out on my own bullshit. I want to talk about what I like to call "Girlboss Culture" or, alternatively, the school of "there's no elevator to success", and why Pinterest quotes about working hard no longer motivate me, but piss me off.  

26 June 2017

Behind my Instagram

Ah Instagram, I like to think of you as the great aunt at a Christmas dinner table of the online world. We love you and all that, but you also massively piss us off. Aunties ask us when we're getting married and tell us that they were a labour voter all of their life but just couldn't vote for Corbyn this time around, Instagram force us to scroll down a non-chronological feed and lead us to obsess over whether our 'grid' has a 'theme'. To summarise: it's a rocky relationship. But not one that we want to end any time soon.

I like to think that I'm pretty transparent with the fact that my Instagram is not an accurate depiction of everything that happens in my life, but it can't hurt to remind people that what you see online is everyone's best bits. Which is why I thought that today I would show the blood, sweat and tears that went into some of my pictures, as inspired by Victoria from vvnightingale.com. Her post is incredible and I've already gushed about how much I adore her, so it's not surprising that I'm now using her as a blogging muse.


23 June 2017

Girl Love #10

Let's be honest, history shows that I'm not all that reliable when it comes to keeping up with blog post series. Remember when I just stopped doing my monthly favourites posts for no apparent reason? Yeah, that. Even though I know that consistency is key in this blogging game and all that jazz, until now there has always come a point where I just stop. I start off with enthusiasm and then get so enthused by a new big project that I kind of forget about the old big project. So, the fact that this little series of mine has now officially made it into the double digits is a pretty massive deal as far as I'm concerned!

I'm not asking you to give me a pat on the back for taming the creative mess that is my mind 90% of the time but, ya know, I wouldn't complain if you did.

The key to my consistency with Girl Love is simple though. I'm just as excited now by the concept that started this series as when I did my first ever post: Every time I post I'm creating a space dedicated to supporting other women in all of the phenomenal things that they do. Because, frankly, we're amazing and we don't get told that enough.

So, let me stop celebrating my own success now and move onto the three incredible ladies that I have to share with you in the decennial edition of Girl Love.

Girl Love #10: Youtubers and Bloggers

22 June 2017

How to feel independent whilst home from Uni

A few weeks back I wrote one of those "spill the contents of your brain into a word document" kind of posts. It was emotionally charged and full of all the anxieties that I was experiencing about heading home from uni for summer. Essentially, I was terrified that once back in the coziness of Kent I would disregard all of the life lessons that the past two years of independent living had taught me and revert back into 18-year-old Beth. Don't get me wrong, she wasn't so bad. But I don't want to regress to a time when I was less independent, less healthy (physically and mentally) and just generally less at peace within myself.

I would like to be able to tell you that my worries were unfounded and that since moving back from London life has been absolutely hunky dory, but that would be a lie. As expected, it's been difficult. I haven't slipped back into home life as much as stumbled. Whilst I've loved seeing my family and friends and that homely feeling that is impossible to recreate, I haven't managed to avoid that feeling of displacement that I think a lot of uni students know too well. What I am happy to be able to tell you though is that I'm getting there. Slowly but surely I'm feeling more grounded and, man, does it feel glorious.

Since I know that I'm not alone in struggling to find that coddled home life/independent uni life balance, I thought I would share how I've reached this point.

Tips for living at home during uni summer break

19 June 2017

My all-natural skincare routine

Not to brag or anything, but I'm writing this post with skin that's in the best condition it's ever been in. I'm actually glowing. I thought that such radiance was a myth but it turns out that I just needed to get into my skincare groove. And now that I've found products that really do get the job done, you best believe that I'm sticking with them.

If there's one thing I've learned in the past few years about my skin it's that it reacts extremely well to completely natural products. Obviously that doesn't mean that's the case for everybody, but I'm pretty bloody happy they I've been able to ditch my monthly trips to Boots. As well as being a lot nicer on my wallet in the long run (simply because most of the products I use last absolutely ages), since the majority of my skincare routine is comprised of individual ingredients it's reassuring to know that I'm not contributing to animal cruelty. Yay for 2017, the year of being a more conscious consumer!

So, if you're on a journey away from complicated skincare or a journey towards cruelty-free living, here is my completely natural skincare regime that works like absolute magic for me.


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16 June 2017

My Favourite apps for Blogging

This post was originally going to be titled "The apps I use every day". And whilst the statement is technically still true, as I was compiling this list I realised that the vast majority of the apps I use every day are related to blogging or organisation. The truth is, this is what I love doing, so I do it a lot! Most of my spare time that isn't spent writing posts themselves is filled with all of the fiddly behind the scenes stuff. Sure I do a little bit of Sodoku on the side, but you probably don't need an app recommendation for that. So even though I made a (sort of) promise not to ever give you blogging tips, these ones happened organically and I'm not mad about it.

Here are the apps that save my blogger butt. If you need a helping hand with anything from scheduling tweets to editing photos, they have your back.



13 June 2017

Using Pinterest for Manifestion

I have to be honest, I never really got Pinterest. I got that it was absurdly popular among bloggers and was somewhere between a digital mood board and a place to find out how to use those spare mason jars that we apparently all have lying around, but I really didn't understand how (or why) I would ever fit that into my social media life.

Despite the fact that so many influencers attributed their success to it, I'm a stubborn social media user and stuck pretty much solely to Instagram and Twitter. They were fulfilling my daily meme quotas, I was in contact with like-minded and badass people and, since I don't have a gazebo that needs priming for a garden party or a gluten intolerance that needs taming, Pinterest just seemed a bit superfluous. 

And yet, here I am on this fine Tuesday evening to tell you why I have in fact started, not only using it, but loving it. Ain't life funny?

pinterest and the law of attraction

11 June 2017

My Summer Goals

A couple of days ago I was looking at the three months of empty calendar space I have ahead of me and went into a mild state of panic. The idea of no deadlines, no lectures and no set structure whatsoever for the whole of summer is glorious and terrifying. But mainly terrifying, because you all know how much I rely on my routines.

When you've spent the past 15 years of your life in almost non-stop education, not having someone to set your goals for you just feels weird. How am I meant to progress if I don't have a deadline that I'm working towards, ya know? Which is why I thought it was necessary, not just for my sanity but for the sanity of everyone else around me, that I set myself some summer goals. Hopefully it'll stop me from turning into a blanket burrito in front of Netflix the entire time and/or a ball of anxiety because I feel like I've achieved nothing in three whole months.

I can feel the inspiration flowing already!

goals for summer 2017

8 June 2017

VOTE VOTE VOTE

Some bloggers choose to be apolitical during election periods. And trust me, I get it. It can make your blog more saleable to brands, it can prevent you from alienating those of your readership who have different political outlooks to you and, in many respects, it can just be easier. However, I am not one of those bloggers.


3 June 2017

My favourite things in may: We're back!

Well, well, well, it's been a while hasn't it?

I definitely fell off the favourites wagon for a while there. The last time I did one of these was back in August because, well, I just didn't think anyone cared about which moisturizer I was "loving at the moment". But then I did a Twitter poll (the most reliable way to gather information, obviously) and it turns out that 92% of my readers actually enjoy finding out about monthly favourites. I don't know if it's for the sake of pure nosiness or shopping inspiration, but I don't care because I love writing them and am excited to share with you some things that brought me joy in May.


This post contains Amazon Affiliate links. 

1 June 2017

My favourite sustainable creators

4 of my favourite online sustainability resources that will help 
you to create conscious habits, find eco-friendly products and answer the question "what is sustainable living"? 

If you're a regular here, you've probably realised that my content has made a bit of a shift in recent months. Whilst I still write to my heart's content about feminist issues, lessons that life has thrown my way and self-love, I've also started sprinkling in posts which I categorise as being about "conscious living."And not just because I recognised that 'wellness' is hot shit in the blogging world right now and decided to jump on board!

What I actually did realise was that my consuming habits didn't align with my beliefs. At all. I was buying products that were tested on animals, I was using insane amounts of plastic that won't biodegrade for 450 years and I was funding fast fashion without even considering the people that made my clothes simply because it's what I was used to. After falling down the online conscious living rabbit hole I decided that habit wasn't an excuse to be a crappy person and that I needed to make some serious changes to the way that I was living my day to day life. So, since I was making these changes anyway, it seemed only right to document them. I also figured that if I could convince one person to make one change, that's a job pretty well done.

Eco friendly sustainable youtubers and bloggers

29 May 2017

Mate, you're not oppressed just because you can't go to one screening of Wonder Woman

When I initially heard that The Alamo Drafthouse theater in Austin was hosting a woman's only screening of the new 2017 Wonder Woman movie, my first thought was "now that sounds like my idea of a fun night", shortly followed by, "well shit, the meninists are going to go crazy." So no, I wasn't surprised by the online uproar from men and the cries of "sexism" that followed the announcement. When you spend as much of your time online as I do, you kind of get used to the laughable attempts of privileged people to make themselves appear oppressed.

Still, I do think that this particular instance is worth writing about, not only because the comic book and film industries are permeated by sexism, but because this acts as a fabulous little example of why "equalism" (not a word, by the way) over feminism works in theory but not in reality.

Wonder woman and feminism

26 May 2017

Yay! I found a natural deodorant that actually works!

Now, I know this isn't the most glamorous of topics, but I strive to make my corner of the internet as real as possible. Do I take flat lays? Yes. Do I talk about the fact that I am pretty prone to sweatiness? Apparently also yes. I've told you all before how this journey to find a decent natural deodorant has led me down many a stinky pathway. So even though this post isn't about a press trip to Cannes, I'm still pretty bloody excited to share it with you the best natural deodorant I've found for the sake of armpits everywhere.

I started using Pitrok a few months back after falling down the conscious living online rabbit hole and finding out about the ingredients that are common in most antiperspirant. Knowing that the armpits house one of the highest concentrations of lymph nodes on the body, I decided that I wanted to avoid putting things like aluminium in that area. And since I already have a completely natural skin-care regime my deodorant seemed like the next place to start making some changes.

pitrok deodorant review


24 May 2017

Coping and Creating

This morning I woke up convinced that today would be the day that my life got back to "normal". After spending 24 hours with a heavy chest and a lump in my throat, I thought that I would wake up and my routines would be restored. I was going to schedule tweets, write blog posts and get back to doing my job. It was what I was craving and what I thought I needed.

But as much as I want to be able to create, I simply can't do it. Despite the fact that I have a list about as long as my arm of posts that I want to write, doing so seems impossible following Monday's tragic events. Normal seems unattainable knowing about all of the lives that have been changed forever or lost. I'm not sure how, but I really believed (or maybe just hoped) that the start of a new day would mean an entirely new mindset. Instead, it just meant waking up to yet more stories of loss.

22 May 2017

No seriously, register to vote.

Google Analytics tells me that the vast majority of my readers are between the ages of 18 and 24, which just so happens to also be the group of people least likely to vote in the UK's upcoming general election. So, if you are under the age of 25, living in the UK and eligible to vote, this one is just for you. You should feel very special.

I'm going to put it simply: Get your national insurance number, sit your arse down and register to vote. Now. You can even click straight off this page to do so. And if I'm willing to mess with my bounce rates then you know this has to be very important.

https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

21 May 2017

My realistic self-care routine

I think it's safe to say that 'wellness' is having a bit of a moment as far as the internet is concerned.  Yoga, meditation, chia seeds - you can log onto Instagram pretty confident that you're going to see at least one of them on your feed. Don't get me wrong, I love that the conversation about self-care has opened up so drastically in the past couple of years and it's great to see people trying to fight against the glorification of being busy. But, as with most 'trends', I can't help but feel that it doesn't represent much variety.

The truth is that "self-care" means something different to everyone. It's not a term that can only be used in regards to positive affirmations and overpriced green juice. Sometimes it looks more like binging on Netflix and whipping up some gourmet beans on toast. Unfortunately, with all of the Instagramable self-care that is floating around, it's easy to feel guilty that you're first instinct after a bad day isn't to downward dog.


19 May 2017

My blogging journey

When I first started blogging I was 15-years-old and it was 2012. Yep, that was around the time of the American Apparel disco pants (and all of its cheaper, almost see-through alternatives), Jeffrey Campbell Lita boots and an online community who decided to dive all the way into pastel coloured hair. From that moment on, blogging kind of became a second home for me.

Before Curly and Wordy was born I was a fashion blogger. I know. Even I find it weird to think about. Just imagine lots of wishlist posts (wishing is all you can do when you're attempting to fund a blossoming eye for trends on £20 a month's worth of pocket money) and OOTDs which I shot on my iPhone 3GS using nothing but self-timer mode and patience. The reasons I decided to go in the direction of fashion were two-fold. Firstly, I genuinely believed that I was destined to be the next editor of British Vogue because, at the time, clothes were the way that I expressed myself creatively. And secondly, well, I thought that the only type of blogs were fashion and beauty blogs and I sure as hell knew that I couldn't do eyeliner.


18 May 2017

Life update: I'm scared of losing my independence

When I jotted down this post idea in my blog planner, I had no idea that it would end up being as emotionally charged as it is. To be honest, I was expecting an extended version of "Lol when I'm at uni I'm a 20-year-old who is #bossing it in London, but when I'm back home I feel akin to a toddler who isn't even sure how to make herself pesto pasta without adult supervision". But, as it turns out, the dissonance between my home life and my uni life is a bit more of a problem than I even realised. Apparently, I have way more to say than I first expected. Oh, blogging, I'm endlessly impressed by your cathartic qualities.

So, to put it simply, I feel like I'm a different person when I'm at university. Or perhaps my perception of myself just changes, because although my core principles remain the same, I certainly feel different within myself. Mainly, I feel like the best (the most productive, the most active, the most independent) version of me when I'm at uni. I think it mainly relies on the routines that I've created for myself since starting uni. It's these daily habits that make me feel like I'm capable of not only being alone, but thriving alone. But the scary thing is that I think my routines have stopped being just that and started to be a part of my personality. They're no longer something that simply aids me, but something that I rely on.


17 May 2017

Some complaints about complaining


Sometimes I feel like university isn’t actually about getting a degree, but more about complaining so much about getting your degree that people respect your hard work. If we’re not moaning about the 2,000 words we have due in by 2pm, we’re bitching about being broke or waving our timetables in everybody’s face whilst screaming “three 9ams in one week!”. In fact, I’m pretty sure that complaining about uni life makes up a solid 75% of our go-to conversation topics. Yes, we did willingly sign up for this experience. Yes, we are paying £9,000 a year to be a part of it. But no, apparently that isn’t going to stop us from trying to convince each other that it is the single most horrific thing in existence.

If you hadn’t figured it out yet from the tone of that sassy little opening paragraph, I’m kind of exhausted by all of the complaining. Not only am I bored of hearing it, but I’m also bored of being an active participant in it, be it around other uni students or just in general life. So, am I complaining about complaining? Well, actually, yes and I am fully aware of the irony. But I hope that this blog post has a bit more direction and purpose than most bitch sessions, because it’s a topic that I’ve been contemplating a lot recently and I think I’ve finally come to some conclusions. The kind of conclusions that are actually changing the way I live my life.  
 
Complaining and the Law of attraction

12 May 2017

How to survive exams with The UniBox

It's that time of the year when I can practically smell the stress as I walk through campus in the form of to-go coffees and dry shampoo because, seriously, who has the time to shower when you've got 3,000 words to write in 2 hours? The library is so full that I'm worried about its structural integrity, I haven't seen my flat mates in well over 48 hours and I'm struggling to understand why we actually pay to put ourselves through this. But, alas, deadline/exam season is well and truly upon us and there's no escaping it.

Luckily though, I've teamed up with The UniBox* this month to show you some of my sure-fire ways to survive cramming sessions, as well as to show off their glorious Exam Survival box. For those of you that don't know, The UniBox is a lifestyle subscription service created just for students. That means that if you sign up you can get a selection of gifts delivered to your doorstep every single month. Yep, it is pretty much like Christmas all year round but without having to deal with your aunt asking if you're still single. After having a look at some of their incredible boxes from past months, I just knew that I had to get my hands on this one, which has been created especially to keep you motivated and calm as those deadlines loom closer. So, today I'm going to share with you how you can incorporate this month's items into an exam-season routine like no other.

The UniBox and why every student needs one

10 May 2017

What Second year taught me

A few days ago I handed in my final essay for the second year of my BA in English Lit and experienced that exhilaration (and mild peril) that accompanies knowing I have four months ahead of me with no essays, no set routines, and no particularly academic goals. Clicking 'submit' on those last 2,500 words really made it hit home: I'm 2/3 of the way through my university life. I only have one year left of being in education, which is pretty much all I've known since I was 5 years old.

Adulthood? Nah, I'm alright thanks.

But it also got me thinking about just how much I've changed since I was that little Fresher. I feel like second year has been the year of personal growth and finally getting properly into the swing of independent living. I think I might have even got to grips with how much pasta is needed for one person which, frankly, is a miracle! So, since it is a tradition, I thought I would share with you all of the lessons that this academic year has taught me.


6 May 2017

4 things that annoy me about blogging

As you've probably guessed by now, I'm pretty fond of blogging. I've been a member of the gang since I was a 14-year-old with but a Jeffery Campbell Lita boot shaped twinkle in my eye and a Look magazine in my school backpack. This side of the internet has provided me with more joy than I could ever have expected when I pressed publish on my first ever post on my first ever blog (it was a riveting read on how I would be mixing the stud and pastels trends of 2012 together that I will most definitely not be linking here). The point is, I've made friends, discovered passions within myself that I didn't even know existed and even created a part-time job for myself whilst I'm studying. I owe a lot to the world of blogging.

That being said, I don't mind admitting that aspects of it have slightly pissed me off in recent months. And by "slightly" I mean, "enough for me to writing a blog post about it instead of watching Jane the Virgin".


5 May 2017

Girl Love #9

Some days I wake up and feel like I've hit the ground running. I get out of bed, pour myself a glass of cranberry juice (gotta keep that urinary tract in order, ladies) and am pretty much instantly ticking things off my to-do list. And you guys know how much of a thrill I get from ticking things off my to-do list. Other days...not so much.

Like yesterday, for example. It was rainy outside and my motivation was at a solid 0.8/10. So, I stayed in bed, watched Jane the Virgin and ate Quality Street until I only had the strawberry creams left. But I think it's safe to say that I needed it because I had the best night's sleep I've had in what feels like years. I think that I'm slowly but surely learning that my self-worth is not dependent on my productivity. I'm coming to terms with the fact that, not only are self-care days okay, but that they are completely necessary. It was bloody glorious to have a total lazy day and it's left me feeling pumped to face what I'm hoping will be a productive Friday.

inspiring bloggers and youtubers

4 May 2017

Social media and my creativity

Since the beginning of the year and resolving that I would spend less time on my phone in 2017, I've been thinking a lot about the role that social media plays in my life. I've become acutely aware of just how rocky our relationship is. On the one hand, it's a huge part of my business and allows me to work from home whilst I'm studying. On the other, one of my favourite things to use it for is to watch people cutting sand in Instagram videos. It walks a weird and fine line between work and relaxation which can make getting pretty much anything - be it writing a blog post or actually switching off at the end of the day - that little bit more complicated.

Whilst it's great to feel like a tweet-scheduling powerhouse, I do find that the almost constant presence of social media in my life makes grasping hold of rare moments of creative inspiration even more difficult. Being the infuriatingly introspective person that I am, I've given a tonne of thought to why this might be and have pretty much concluded that the reasons are threefold.


1 May 2017

Lube and why you need to check the label

Lube has got a pretty bad rep. Well, everything related to sex has a pretty bad rep in this society, but lube particularly so. I don’t know whether it’s because people think that women should be capable of being wet at the drop of a hat on a 24/7 basis or just because people get nervous talking about bodily functions. Either way, it carries with it a massive stigma that means a lot of people are embarrassed to buy it, let alone whip it out in the bedroom. For the sake of orgasms everywhere, that’s something that needs to stop.

If you’ve never used the stuff before, then forget what your pride is trying to tell you because it’s going to change your life. Or at least your sex life. Not only does extra slide make for a more pleasurable experience all round, but the lack of resistance makes it less likely that you will experience the pure fear of a broken condom. Plus, if you know what it feels like to have a bladder that is akin to the fiery pits of hell, you’ll be happy to know that a smoother experience can help to lower the chance of contracting a UTI. Win, win, win. 

Organic Lubricants and why you need to check the label

28 April 2017

5 ways I've updated my wardrobe without funding fast fashion

Once upon a time, in what feels like another life, I was a fashion blogger. Yep. A full on "weekly wishlist", "OOTD", "Trend alert!" kinda fashion blogger who prided herself on her ability to spot a Gucci dupe in any high street shop. My life revolved around trends and hanging around fashion week locations (the second best thing to actually being inside the shows themselves, as far as I was concerned) from the ages of about 14 to 17. It was a good time whilst it lasted and I'm still proud of a lot of the opportunities that I created through it, but it's safe to say that I've changed a tad. And that my adoration of fashion has simmered down considerably.

It's also got a lot less clear cut since discovering just how morally fucked up the fast fashion industry really is. As I discussed in my first post for Fashion Revolution Week, the lack of transparency surrounding the clothes that most of us are buying is pretty terrifying. Due to a distinct lack of supply chain information and an ever growing demand for the 52 seasons of style that the fast fashion industry accommodates, we don't really have a concept of how much damage our purchases are doing.


26 April 2017

Fashion Revolution Week: How ethical is my wardrobe?

This week marks 4 years since the Rana Plaza Disaster, possibly the most powerful example of how much our society values convenience and a bargain over anything else. It was the day on which 1,138 garment factory workers died due to a building collapse, despite the fact that companies were warned to evacuate the premises. Of course, that would have meant losing profit. And there is nothing to fast fashion businesses more important than profit, not the lives of the people that make their clothes and not the environment that their harmful practices are killing.

Which is exactly why Fashion Revolution Week is so needed. It's a time for us to all come together and demand transparency within the fashion industry, by asking brands 'who made my clothes'? That means no more confusing labels, fake activism or supply chains that are impossible to track down.  All we're asking for is some honesty so that we know whether anybody has suffered for the clothes that we buy.

How ethical is my wardrobe? Fast fashion and the clothing revolution

22 April 2017

Earth Day: Small changes I've been making

Sometimes, I really hate humans. In fact, oftentimes I really hate humans. That's not to say that I don't have individuals I'm pretty fond of (Elizabeth Gilbert, Beyoncé, Bob Ross), but I have to admit that as a collective we're pretty shit. Once you've realized how much we value convenience (as in, more than we value the actual world that we live in), it's hard to not wonder when the hell we're going to get our sustainability act together. It's almost like we forget that we're not the only ones that live on this beautiful lil' planet.

The thing is, the habits that are scarily quickly killing our planet are completely unnecessary. But they are habits, which means it takes a little bit of focus to get yourself out of them. Personally, I think that the best way to do so is to scare /educate yourself. Watch documentaries, read articles and talk to people about everything that we're doing wrong and how we can make it right. Or at least more right.

Over the past few months, partially inspired by Ariel Bisset's video on sustainability and partially inspired by the ticking time bomb that was my conscience, I've been making some changes. Small changes that are pretty insignificant as far as my daily life is concerned, but changes that all add up to help reduce plastic pollution, the emission of greenhouse gasses and unnecessary consumption. So, since it's Earth Day, I thought I would share them with you.