How Easy It Is To Not Like Yourself

So obviously I watch Love Island… and on last night’s show one of the contestants had a mini break down about her lack of confidence and how she can’t help but compare herself to the other women on the show. This hit home with many of the program’s female viewers, including myself.

My boyfriend didn’t get it, “What is she on about?! Grow up!” but I knew exactly how she felt. Gabby is one of the more natural looking females on the show. She doesn’t appear to have plumped up lips or fake boobs. She has hair extensions but her hair is at a chic, blunt lob (long bob, duh). She’s a personal trainer so her body is phenomenal and she has gorgeous blue eyes and a lovely smile. She also seems to be one of the more mature, “down to earth” characters, not as interested in drama or game playing. But she was in tears saying she felt like as soon as she got out she wanted to book herself a boob job and get hair extensions down to her bum.

Gabby

It may seem ridiculous but almost all women do this. It’s impossible not to! We compare ourselves to women on TV, on Instagram, at work, on the bus! I’ve been unhappy about various parts of myself for as long as I can remember. I’ve never been “the pretty one” in any of my friendship groups. WHO CARES? WHY DOES IT MATTER?! I don’t know but for some reason it does and for most of my life it made me feel like shit.

Ok, when I was at school I had a lot going against me (braces, acne, the lack of decent hair straighteners on the market…) and sadly I had a group of skinny, straight-haired, perfect skinned friends to contend with. At Uni however I’d come out the other side of all that, I’d medicated my skin into looking better than ever and GHD’s had been invented (praise be)! I was more confident than I’d been at school as I felt like I was coming into my own, looks wise. But two of my closest friends (and flatmates) at Uni were tiny, blonde haired, blue-eyed pixies so really I paled in comparison. In my mind this was the best I’d ever looked… but it still wasn’t good enough. I still wasn’t the pretty one when I was standing next to them, watching them get chatted up by many a passer by. Now don’t get me wrong, I did alright! But I was constantly comparing myself to them because we looked so different. Now I was a bit (gag) “alternative” in those days and my Uni really wasn’t. Who’s to say in a different school or city or group of friends I wouldn’t have been the pretty one? But in that place, at that time, I was not many people’s cup of tea. Or at least that’s how I felt.

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Uni days- HEY ALEXA IF YOU’RE READING THIS! x

Even today, even though I know its wrong, I still do it. If you know me you’ll know I HATE HATE HATE my nose, my upper (ham) arms and my entire, middle. I have tried to lose weight, I’ve had personal trainers, I’ve joined gyms, I’ve tried spin, swimming, yoga and am always going on and off diets. None of the girls in any of my friendship groups has a body even similar to mine. It makes me feel like a freak, many of them appear to be able to eat want they want and don’t seem to ever gain weight where as I have steadily been gaining weight every year since I was about 19.

Sometimes I look at my face in the mirror and I catch myself thinking its OK. Then I’ll see a picture of my massive fucking snoz taking centre stage and I’ll all but run to grab the kitchen scissors and try to lop it off! (Your nose NEVER stops growing people, it’s not looking good for me but damn, nose jobs are esspensive! Plus they look hella painful…)

I can’t even get a hair cut without over thinking it! My hair has been long and layered for years and I felt like it looked stale and boring. So I did my classic move of cutting in a fringe and then instantly regretting it. I kept seeing pics of girls with these stylish, choppy haircuts that they were curling to look tousled and effortless and I thought, “I want dat”. So I got it cut and I loved it for 24 whole hours and then I thought, shit, did I look better with long hair? Does this length age me?! Should I grow it back out?! But wait, does long hair look as edgy? Am I too old for hair that long?! These are the thoughts that now go through my head about once a day.

Now it’s not all doom and gloom. I’ve always been pretty happy with my legs. My calves are skinny, my thighs are thick but in an OK way and now that they’ve been lasered to within an inch of their life, I look forward to getting them out in the summer. Something my boyfriend has previously commented on is that fact that I don’t have cellulite. Welp, at the ripe old age of 32 guess what I got now… you guessed it- cellulite baby! On my thighs. I know he was trying to compliment me and meant well but now I don’t feel so great. Now I feel like the one good part of myself has been tainted. But everyone has cellulite! Skinny people have cellulite! Doesn’t matter. I didn’t have it and now I do and I hate my thighs. (Calves- you still good, I know you got my back.)

It really hit home when it came to my lips. I have NEVER had a problem with them. I love their shape I’m very happy with their fullness, they look great with a bright lippy. HOW-EV-ER, as someone with an interest in beauty, I follow a lot of “influencers” on Instagram and YouTube and there is a big trend in that scene at the moment of getting lip fillers. Some of them are huge and obvious some of them are more natural but a lot of them do look good and for the first time in my life I found myself questioning whether my lips looked their best.

It’s been said a thousand times before but I’m gonna say it again for the people at the back; there is a huge amount of pressure on women to look good all the time. But good by whose standards? The ones we’re surrounded by. If big lips are in but your aren’t big enough you better do something about it! Straighten you’re hair because curly hair isn’t fashionable. 10-20 years ago skinny eyebrows were the thing, so we invested in Tweezermans and plucked the shit out of them. Well sorry, that’s considered gross now you moron! Grow that shit back out if you don’t want to look like a weirdo! People might not like it if you wear “too much” makeup up but then they ask if there’s something wrong or tell you that you look tired when you don’t wear any. It’s simple really just wear the CORRECT amount, jeeze! Crop tops are in I’m afraid so if you haven’t got the body for them then you must dress like a middle aged art teacher because there’s no in between. It kind of feels like a lose lose stich.

Last night I was comparing myself to a Swedish YouTuber. She’s tall, athletic, has long, icy blonde hair and equally icy blue eyes with a cute little nose to match. I AM NEVER GOING TO LOOK LIKE THIS WOMAN. EVER. But I wish I did because she’s beautiful. But I also wish I looked like Lourdes and Dua Lipa (have you SEEN her stomach?!) and they look totally different! So it never ends really. I’ll probably never be happy with the way I look. But hey, maybe in my own way I’m also beautiful? Maybe I have nice eyes and good skin and ok hair and straight teeth- but I didn’t always! I fucking suffered through a lot of shit to have that stuff and a lot of money was spent! If I hadn’t done that I’d look completely different and maybe be even more unhappy.

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YouTuber Katrin Berndt, taken from her Instagram @katrinberndt

What I’m saying is, the cycle never ends so maybe just let us off for not wanting to wear makeup everyday or wash our hair because chances are we’re giving ourselves a much harder time for it.

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Dua Lipa, taken from her Instagram @dualipa

Things I Like 3

Video

*Watch in HD!*
Mini reviews of some beauty stuff I accumulated recently.

PRODUCTS MENTIONED:
Nip + Fab Dragons Blood Fix Hyaluronic Shot
Bobbi Brown Vitamin Enriched Face Base
Queen Of Oil Argon Oil- **USE CODE QUEENY FOR 20% OFF!**
No.7 Beautifully Matte Foundation in Honey
NYX Doll Eyes Mascara
Colour Pop Eyeshadows in Nillionare & So Quiche, Matte X Lippie Stick in Topless, Gel Liner in Swerve
Too Faced Melted Matte Liquid Lipsticks in Evil Twin & Mrs. Roper

FOLLOW ME:
Insta: SavedByTheBlush
Twitter: @SavedByTheBlush

Saved By The BRUSH

Hiyerrrr.

I’m gonna do a bit of a brush lowdown today because I’m still seeing flat foundation brushes knocking around and it’s making my teeth itch.

face brushes web 2

Real Techniques Buffing Brush

The Real techniques range are the best brushes on the High Street in my opinion and actually stack up pretty well off the H.S too. The quality is excellent and they’re v. reasonably priced. They’re the brainchild of Makeup Artist and YouTuber Sam Chapman of Pixiwoo fame and the brand is growing more and more. This buffing brush has been my go to foundation brush for ages now and it is my all time favourite face brush. Soft dense bristles that are tightly packed but fan out enough to blend foundation seamlessly. It comes in the ‘Core Collection’ set with the contour brush (mentioned below) a small detail brush which makes a good lip brush and a flat foundation brush which you can throw out straight away. Its an award winning set at a great price so go buy it now from Boots, Superdrug or online.

Buffing brush web

Morphe E6 Flat Top Buffing Brush

Because I watch a lot of YouTubers from the US I tend to want to try a lot of the stuff that they use out there and boy do they all rave about Morphe brushes. Luckily there are some UK sites that have started stocking a selection so you don’t have to pay for shipping, I got mine from Cocktail Cosmetics. They are crazy cheap in the US, I think they’re a bit more pricey from here (but again you save on shipping) but are still super reasonable and really good quality. I bought this just to try an alternative to the above, I’ve seen a lot of YouTubers using flat top brushes and I do really like it, the bristles are ridic soft and does a good job of blending. I would say you definitely don’t need this if you buy the Real Tekkers one but I’m obsessed with buying brushes and really wanted to try it so I flit between the two.

Morphe flat top web

Morphe E53

I love this brush for using powder to set the area under my eyes, it’s the perfect size and shape thanks to the tapered end. It would also work really well for contour application and blending and also blusher.

Morphe under eye web

Real Techniques Contour Brush

I use this brush to apply and blend out concealer under my eyes, on my nose, forehead and chin and then anywhere I have blemishes. Again its a really good size. I apply the concealer with the wand or my finger and then use a combo of a dabbing & sweeping motion to blend out, if you just sweep you’ll rub the product off. Also would work well for contour as the name suggests but think it would be better with creams rather than powders. It comes in a set with the Buffing Brush (above) and a couple of others.

RT concealer web

Real Techniques Dup Fibre Powder Brush

I’m not sure if this particular Duo Fibre set was limited edition or not but tbh any Real Tech powder brush is gonna be good. I use it to apply finishing powder and then if I need to tone down blushes or contour I’ll blend it away with this. I like it because it doesn’t pick up too much product so you’re not caked and it blends well too. Would also work well as a bronzer brush.

Duo fibre powder web

Charlotte Tilbury Powder & Sculpt Brush*

I use this brush for powder contour, its perfect because it has a tapered end to fit into areas where it needs to and its fluffy so good for blending. It would also work well for highlight but I think it’s pretty expensive (I was luck enough to get it for free) and you can probably find a dupe that’s just as good. It is good quality though.

CT contour web

Real Techniques Blush Brush

I’ve tried a lot of blusher brushes and this is the only one I really like, I do think it’s slightly big but it is tapered and the bristle are packed in a way that it picks up and deposits a good amount of product but also blends really well and it’s really soft. Would also work well with finishing powder or bronzer.

RT blush web

I wash all of my brushes with hand soap (gel) but baby shampoo or a gentle, non stripping clarifying shampoo would be a bit better, I also use a rubber brush cleaning glove with little bumps that I found on eBay (swirl the soapy brush around in it, the bumps get out all the remaining product). Hold them upside down so you don’t get water in the ferrel (it’ll fuck with the glue). Gently squeeze out excess water then wrap the end in a sheet of paper towel and leave on their sides to dry. I dry mine upside down in a brush holder that I also found on eBizzle. Make sure you wash all the soap out thoroughly or the brushes will be kind of sticky when they dry. I only use my brushes on myself so I’m kind of lazy with how often I do it as it’s a ball ache but obviously I’ll always wash them if I’m going to be using them on someone else.

Face brushes web 1

Chatty GRWM- Lazy Makeup

Video

PRODUCTS USED:
Laura Mercier oil free Tinted Moisturiser in Sand
Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in 3 Warm Medium
Collection Loose Powder in Translucent
Soap & Glory Solar Powder
Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Pomade in Ebony
Sleek Blusher in Antique
Kiko Milano Long Lasting Stick Eyeshadow in 15
Essence Volume Princess Mascara*
Sleek Paint Pout in Minx*