I’ve been looking forward to this past weekend for a while. Peanut and I were bridesmaids for my beautiful sister-in-law and her big day was nothing short of a spectacle, and as dazzling as she is. The run up has been a year of excitement, anticipation and a few well-kept secrets; but it has also been a great way to take my mind off being so bloody massive and gave me a goal – to get in the dress! Thankfully I squeezed in, 9 weeks after giving birth, and was able to enjoy the day without being uncomfortable and worrying whether I was about to burst out of the seams.
The day was also a break for me, a break from what has been a really tough few weeks. In the back of my mind has been my own health concerns and remembering to take medication, wondering whether I’m doing the right thing with little Roo despite constant contradictions between Health Visitors and Doctors which led to an outpatients visit to the children hospital out of town; and not to mention trying to get Peanut to school on time! I never anticipated how incredibly difficult life with 2 would be, and how alone I was going to feel at times. This time, maternity leave has without doubt, been one of the most isolating experiences of my life and the loneliest. Its a time when you need your friends, you need family support and you need to avoid stress and anything that knocks you back. Unfortunately, after just a couple of weeks we couldn’t avoid that stress and were in hospital with Rude Dog (he’s got a few nicknames now! we’ll settle on one soon) in fact, you could say we were summoned. This resulted in an awful experience and having to make formal complaints to the hospital – something that weighed quite heavy on my shoulders considering the state of the NHS at the moment. We received such amazing care when he was born, but we were let down too.
So here we are, Tuesday morning with the snow outside and the sun shining. Roo napping in his chair while I finally sink my breakfast and coffee and grab a spare five to put words onto screen and reflect on the awesome week/weekend we’ve just enjoyed. It was also my wedding anniversary and my birthday, which was brilliant, and with it came some amazing gifts from Mr P – A Cowshed haul and some gorgeous treats from my fave indie shop, Salt & Silver. I’ll be trying these out soon and posting reviews as soon as I can.
But today its all about face. My face in particular. Sorry; it’s not the best face but it’s mine and I like to look after it by not slathering it in chemicals. And that’s exactly what this weekend gave me the opportunity to do – or so I had planned. As a bridesmaid you need to look gorgeous but not so gorgeous that you outshine the bride. We had no worries about that, considering my SIL is an absolute goddess! But maximum effort was needed and since I had refused the make-up artists in favour of my own natural products I had a task and a half to undertake. When you walk in to the house to find the other bridesmaids faces looking like an immaculate oil painting in the style of Monet himself, you know you’ve got your work cut out! I’ve never been the best at doing my make-up. In fact I’m absolutely turd at it so often don’t bother but I’d clued up on products, technique and blending… oh god, the blending, to ensure that I wasn’t going to look like a Picasso next to the Monets.
I’d equipped myself with the best from PHB Ethical, Neal’s Yard Remedies, Bare Minerals and Lily Lolo but when I practised the day before, my best Lily Lolo BB cream had run out, leaving me in a massive panic. Now, I reside in the armpit of Britain, the back arse of buttf*ck nowhere if you will, and we have absolutely nowhere to buy natural make-up other than the internet. Even Amazon Prime couldn’t solve my quandary and so I had to venture into town to, god forbid, The Body Shop. Ive had a bit of a fall out with TBS after finding that products I’d been using for years were actually full of rubbish, but at this late stage it was the closest place I was going to find something that was nearly natural. Sometimes you can’t go chemical free, but you can get close enough.
I went for The Body Shop’s Fresh Nude Foundation in Bali Vanilla, priced at a reasonable £16. It’s enriched with rose water and aloe vera to give the skin a nice load of moisture and contains SPF 15 to keep the skin safe. I’m always dubious about non-natural products that say they’re ‘enriched’ with nice things that we like to think are doing our skin some good, because I always think they’re shielding us from the rubbish that’s also packed into the bottle. However, I was pleasantly surprised with this product and it’s ingredients. I checked out each one, and they all score extremely low in health concerns on the EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database – an incredibly useful site where you can check out the ingredients in any products that you’re using.
It went on my skin really nicely and after applying powder over the top, it looked flawless. I never have flawless looking skin so it was pretty nice to enjoy that for a day and it really was all day coverage. But, I know its down to the silicon-based chemicals in the formulation which really doesn’t sit well with me. So, for that reason I’ll be stashing it for special occasions and date nights rather than allowing it into my daily routine. I’m ok with it, but I’m not that much of a Seamus the Ignoramus. But I did manage to replicate the other bridesmaids look and I was really impressed with it.
Much love and positivity!