helen redfern

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Welcome to my online journal where I write about writing, creativity, building an online business, baking, reading and chicken & duck-keeping.

Failure to Moisturise

Failure to Moisturise

my favourite beauty products for august

I look down at my shins and they're flaking with dead skin. My elbows are hard and catch on my cardigan. My facial skin is not much better. Puffy eyes, spots, flat. There's no glowy, dewy skin anywhere near here.

For many years, particularly since I had children, I didn't think I was worth taking care of. I wasn't worth spending money on. Buying a moisturiser that suited my skin, getting my hair cut and coloured, taking vitamins, even drinking water. I avoided all of it.

For my children I would look through the Boden catalogue and buy them cute outfits. My son and daughter had eczema as a baby and I researched the best cream for them*. It was pricey (at the time) but I didn't think twice. They were worth it.

But was I?

When I hit a low point a few years ago I went to a counsellor. As I got better I proudly told her, "I've been moisturising". We'd never mentioned my lack of moisturising before but she knew exactly what I meant. I'd started taking care of myself.

Whether I moisturise or not is directly related to how my mood is and how I feel about myself. It then feeds into how I eat. What I choose to eat and drink. Fruit or a doughnut? Water or diet coke? And whether I go outside and get some natural vitamin D and fresh air. 

It's like a circle. One feeds the other. Food, exercise, mood, self-care. And if one is out of kilter then the others are immediately affected. 

The beauty industry gets a lot of stick. It has been argued it makes women feel bad about themselves so they have to buy the products. But, on the other hand, a beauty product can help a woman, i.e me, give herself some self-love. And that's no bad thing. It's a cliche but I am worth it.

What I've been loving during August

Water - lots and lots of water. 

Wellwoman Plus Vitamins - after I gave birth to my daughter eight years ago my skin suffered a really bad break-out. I tried everything externally that I could. Including changing my fabric conditioner and detergent to a non-scented brand and buying some anti-acne facial products. Nothing worked. So I googled. (Of course I googled.) And found that it could well be a depletion in zinc. I bought some zinc tablets and almost immediately my skin cleared up. So now I take these Wellwoman Plus Vitamins which includes zinc in the vitamin tablet and oils (including evening primrose and fish oils) are in the Omega capsule.

Imperial Leather Foamburst Shower Gel - I'm old enough to remember Imperial Leather's adverts from the 1980s; something about luxury everyday... I've always thought of it as the soap with the rectangle sticker that gradually got smaller and smaller! So when I bought the foamburst I was a bit sceptical - but you know what - I love it. A little goes a long way and the foam turns to a creamy lather that smells incredible. My daughter and I are now addicted to the Vanilla & Cherry.

Bobbi Brown Extra Repair Moisturising Balm - I bought this a while back when I had some vouchers to really treat myself and I use it for special occasions when I want a bit of extra oomf (i.e when I go out the house into the public domain and not when I'm sitting at my computer in my pyjamas all day!)  It ain't cheap at £60+ a pot and it does feel a little sticky to put on. But again, a little goes a long way, it smells gorgeous, soon absorbed and I can always tell when I've used it as my skin just glows. It also has a screw top and I'm reminded when I use it; when the lid connects to the jar and makes that expensive sound, that I'm worth taking care of.

Plum & Ashby Green Fig & Lavender Hand Cream  - I have this in a gorgeous brown jar next to me on my desk. It's a fantastic cream; smelling of my childhood french holidays, and allows me to pop some on and get back to typing almost immediately, with the scent of lavender fields in the air, as it is super-fast absorbing.

Lush Blue Skies Bubble Bar - oh Lush, how I have missed you. Since moving to this house I haven't had a decent bath. It was a tiny bath and incredibly uncomfortable so I avoided it and took showers instead. I have to say, when I'd been outside lugging logs, cleaning out the chickens or pushing wheelbarrows full of heavy stuff, I've been desperate for a hot bath to treat my poor back...but had to make do with my shower. But FINALLY we've had a new bath installed. So, on a recent trip to London to see the athletics, when I spied Lush in the shopping centre I was in there faster than Usain Bolt. And headed straight for the bubble bar section where I picked up the blue skies bubble bar. It just smells delicious and feels like my bath time is a real event. Which, after five years, it is.

* The best cream I found for my daughter's eczema is Burt's Bees Baby Bee Multipurpose Ointment

This post is not sponsored but if you purchase the two links through Amazon I may earn a few pennies (at no cost to you) which helps in the running of this blog.

an honest post about beauty and the brands that have made me feel good lately
Books I've read over summer (and what I'm planning to read next)

Books I've read over summer (and what I'm planning to read next)

Why does writing make me feel so guilty?

Why does writing make me feel so guilty?