Hair extensions… the new go-to

All too often my Instagram feed appeared to be mocking me with girls who had long flowy and most importantly HEALTHY hair and while I have a tendency to preach about how Instagram is just a “highlight reel” of an individuals life, I must confess that more often than not I too succumb to the beauty standards that social media continues to force down our throats. Thus, after countless vitamins and different shampoos I decided that the best course of action was fake it till you make it. I had heard very mixed reviews about hair extensions over the course of my life so was a bit hesitant at first. Turns out like everything, the number 1 tip is research.

After searching high and low across every single salon in Melbourne, I finally discovered the place for me. I was absolutely amazed at how fast the whole process was and how invisible my real hair was. Fast forward a few months and I seamlessly have the hair of my dreams and a new level of confidence i didn’t even know I had!

But be warned, the first few days are no easy feat. While I was tossing my hair over my shoulder to every poor soul who passed me, I did notice in the first hour the beginning of what I though was just a very poorly timed headache. As it turns out, my scalp was not approving of my luscious locks and the new weight that they carried. Later that night I found myself guzzling down a few Panadol and trying to find the least painless position for my head on the pillow. If only I had been made privy to the discomfort I would endure over the next two days. But I slowly developed a routine and a tolerance to my new-found fibers by conducting the following:

  • Flip your head upside down and hold for 30-60 seconds
  • Sleep with your hair out for the first night, and then in a single braid down the back on the second
  • For the love of god DON’T KEEP TOUCHING IT!!!
  • Tilt your head in multiple directions so your roots can get used to the wait
  • Use a smoothing serum

Much to my surprise getting hair extensions turned out to be much more than just a one-time trip to the salon. It actually required a little bit of a lifestyle change. I had to actually start looking after my hair a bit more. This meant not letting it air-dry, more frequent brushing and using as much detangler as I would holy water. But I can confidently say that i have absolutely NO RAGRETS! If this is something you’ve been considering I highly recommend going for it. Do your research, make the investment, be prepared for a slight lifestyle change and enjoy.

Best Apps to use in Isolation

This is a tough time for everyone there’s no denying that. But desperate times do call for desperate measures and just because we are all stuck in quarantine due to the COVID-19 virus outbreak doesn’t mean we get to slack off. (Ok we do a little bit). Perhaps it’s my new found motivation since being on Trikafta… or perhaps it’s because I’m stuck at home with nothing else to do… or it could simply be my narcissistic personality shining through as I pretend to be a tip-top person. Nevertheless, as I have nothing better to do i decided to try and improve my exercise regime. I don’t have enough will power to do it on my own so I bless modern technology and use apps. Here are some of my favourites fitness apps that I have been using even pre-isolation:

  • Keep It Cleaner: Praise be this app! These girls turned me around. Prior to getting sick I used their HIIT routines and even though they were brutal they were bearable because I had Laura and Steph encouraging me along the way. They have so many different variations of exercise from yoga, to pilates, to boxing, HIIT sessions as well as meditation exercises, this app has it all. They also give you a food plan for the week with so many different meals which are absolutely delicious yet so so healthy. If you’re going to try any app…let it be this one.
  • Asana Rebel: I actually downloaded this app a few years ago after my new years resolution was to become more flexible. Little did I know that there was so much more to this app including high intensity workouts as well as core strengthening and mediation. The app is divided into 5 sections: Exercise, sleep, nutrition, meditation and music for focus. The beauty of these guys is it reminds you to do the little things like drink a glass of water or breathe in deep. They also have weekly challenges that relate to both fitness and diet.
  • Nike: I had this bad-boy when i used to be a little fit bit. It’s handy for those of you who still wanna get out of the house and up your step count. The Nike Run Club tracks your KM’s via GPS for a VERY detailed analysis of your route as well as tips on how you can improve.
  • Smiling Mind: During these troubling times, it is more important than ever to keep our mental strength every bit as strong as our physical strength. Made by professional psychologists and educators in an effort to bring mindfulness into ones life, Smiling Mind is perfect for those who seek relaxation, enlightenment, or simply want to give meditation a go.

Trying to Keep up with the Kardashians

All too often I find myself lost in the abyss that is instagram perfection and all to often I find myself feeling drained and almost “unworthy” with a serious case of fomo.

I’ve seen this issue raised in other social media platforms about how we “can’t compare someone’s highlight reel to our own behind the scenes”, but as I live vicariously through the pictures of others and the fashion/ lifestyle influencers of the world I can’t help but feel envious and inferior.

I feel like my life is a perfect example in the sense that I am a very lucky person to have been to the places I have been and see the things I have done. But social media has made such a presence in every day life that my first thought is always “take a picture and post”. I’m not going to lie I almost get angry when this thought surfaces. Am I not privileged enough to just enjoy my time and live in the moment? Why do I feel the need to splash it all over social media?

I inevitably realised that I am contributing to the problem but is that not because I have fallen victim to it and am now trying to live up to these standards?

Please take my advice with a grain of salt but during my years of Instagram and blogging I have learnt to also take the post of others with a grain of salt. What you posted was more than enough as you are under no obligation what so ever to post anything. Photos caption but a second and you get to live and breathe for millions of them.

In the Limelight: Game of Thrones S8

Ok so, I actually wasn’t going to write a review for the final season to Game of Thrones because contrary to popular belief, I didn’t actually mind the last season and disagree with a lot of the hoopla. But, one of my brothers insisted so here goes…

So here’s the thing, I actually don’t see how this show could’ve been done any differently. If they did more episodes then yeah maybe but overall, my only real dislike about the season was the fact that Arya killed the Night King. (I think we can all agree that Jon should’ve done that one.) Anyway, other than that I wasn’t too fussed with how it all concluded because I honestly couldn’t see it ending any other way. It was well acted, well directed and inevitable well written.

I guess the main issue I have with all the uproar about it it the issue so many people had with Daenarys being killed off. I feel like this had been something that the show had been pushing for a few seasons. It had been made clear that if it hadn’t been for Tyrion whispering in her ear she would have destroyed slavers bay and “return it to the dirt”. They also pushed this idea when her and Jon first met. She was reluctant to help him defeat the army of the dead if he didn’t bend the knee, which was a fight that benefited her as well. From when her brother died, right up until the end the writers had hinted subtly at the idea that the only thing that interested her was Iron Throne which in the second last episode became clear.

Branching off from this I also take issue with the comparison people kept making between Sansa and Daenerys. A lot of people seemed disappointed by the fact that Sansa survived while Daenerys fell and a lot seemed to claim that neither character deserved that ending. I even saw a post that while Daenerys lost everything (life, lover, children, etc.) Sansa got exactly what she wanted………… Seriously?? This is where I have my biggest beef because this is so offensive to the character that is Sansa Stark and everything she went through.

When Dany first met Jon, she explained to him how she “had been sold like a brood mare, chained, betrayed, raped and defiled”, and a lot of people used this quote when she died because it had somehow been an injustice to her. Meanwhile, so many people forgot that Sansa went through every bit of trauma that Daenerys did as well. Abused by Joffery, sold to the Boltons, betrayed by Littlefinger, raped by Ramsay and tormented by Cersei. She went through every bit of horror and suffering that Dany went through and throughout it all remained good, kind and generous. She remained loyal to the North and only wanted what was best for her people. In contrast to this it was clear that overtime Dany’s perception of what was “good” became wildly misconstrued and almost selfish.

Overall, I do believe that Dany’s death is justified and while I understand why people aren’t happy about it, there wasn’t really another way. I agree in the sense that the last season did feel rushed but at the same time, believe that they did relatively well with what they had.

And now our watch has ended.

The Beauty of Succulents

If you’re like me and kill every plant you come within close proximity of (be it indoors or outdoors) then caring for plants is certainly not your strong suit. So allow me to rectify this issue. If you still have a love for plants and horticulture, then may I suggest the most low-maintenance and perfect indoor plant there is…THE SUCCULENT!

Not only do these bad boys thrive in dry indoor conditions but they also require minimal care (both water and fertiliser). They tend to be at their best during the spring and summer seasons and can be either the size of a candle or the size of a… bigger plant.

Happy gardening… Kinda! xx

The Benefits of Magnesium Bath Salts

I love a good bath especially after a long day/workout/anything really and a few months ago I was also reading up about what bath salts can do for you. I normally just like them because they are relaxing and some can smell AMAZING!! But then I saw that magnesium bath salts are actually beneficial for your body so win win!!

According to science it’s the second most abundant element in our bodies, and it would appear that the most effective and efficient method for magnesium absorption is through our skin. So to the bath we go to relax!

Magnesium also helps:

  • Relieve stress
  • Helps absorb nutrients better
  • Joint and pain relief
  • Skin hydration
  • Improves sleep
  • Improves mood and
  • Can lower your risk of diabetes

TV Shows That Have to be on your Watchlist

For many people, TV is the ultimate pass time and with the introduction of Netflix, Foxtel and many other media streaming creations, there is now an ever growing list of “must watches” and favourites on our list of things to watch. With that, (in no particular order), here are my top 5 all time favourite TV shows that if you haven’t watched, you need to get on to ASAP!

  1. The Sopranos

Ok, I lied. The only form of order that this post will have is that THIS show is by far and away, number 1. Set in the early 2000’s, in New Jersey, the show follows Italian mob boss Tony Soprano through his work and personal life. It definitely took me a while to get into it but OMG am I in love now!! Rolling Stone Magazine describes it as an “inspiring and terrifying mess” and is number 1 on its list of 100 Greatest Shows of all time. I think most TV gurus would agree with me when I say that this is the show that reinvented both HBO and TV as a whole. James Gandolfini who play the great man bloody nailed it and when of the greatest moments on my recent New York trip was unknowingly stumbling along a restaurant in Little Italy where the cast would spend most of their time, signed photos and plaques decorating the place. Filled with broken characters the show encompasses both comedy, crime, drama and sheer sheer emotion. Just like my good friends at Rolling Stone, The Sopranos remains the standard all ambitious TV aspires to meet.

2.   Breaking Bad

Chemistry teacher turned drug dealer, Breaking Bad is another classic. Walter White is (played by living legend Bryan Cranston) is both terrifying and painfully ordinary and in some ways, finally finds his life fulfilment with drug making and dealing. His partner in crime Jesse Pinkman is one of Walter’s ex students who is just making in life. The duo continue to climb the ladder in the drug world, much to the detriment of their families, friends and themselves. It is the classic show of a nobody entering the world of crime and corruption in order to become “somebody” and is an intriguing 5 season series.

3.    Seinfeld

Following the lives of Jerry, George, Kramer and Elaine in the bustling New York City. It’s light, it’s funny and a classic!

4.    Game of Thrones

DRACARYS BITCHES!!! Rolling Stone Mag describes it as “The Sopranos meets Middle Earth”. Set in the fictional world of Westeros, the Nobel families of Stark, Targayen, Lannister, Baratheon, Tyrell and as array of others battle it out for the throne in King’s Landing. Based on the George RR Martin books, there are so many storylines each more interesting than the next and it is definitely the ultimate fantasy TV series.

5.     The Wire

Another show that HBO bloody nailed! Following the drug game in Baltimore – building an entire city full of corrupt politicians, corner boys and cops who keep learning the biggest crime is “giving a fuck when it ain’t your turn to give a fuck.” Each season told a different story – the Barksdale gang in Season Three, the doomed school kids in Season Four. “After the first season, I thought, ‘There’s no way I’m being renewed,'” Simon told Rolling Stone. “But no one has told us to stop. I mean, any schmuck making over 50 hours of TV on what ails the American city and expecting people to watch it deserves what he gets.” The Wire gave us characters no one had seen before, from Idris Elba’s menacing Stringer Bell to Robert F. Chew’s endlessly quotable Proposition Joe. But Michael K. Williams created the ultimate badass with Omar, the shotgun-toting trench-coat avenger. As Joe told Omar, “A businessman such as myself does not believe in bad blood with a man such as yourself. Disturbs the sleep.” So many unforgettable moments all over The Wire – Bunk and McNulty canvassing a murder scene with one word of dialogue; Omar explaining his grief to bow-tied hit man Brother Mouzone (“See, that boy was beautiful”); Avon and Stringer on a balcony toasting a future they know will never come; Slim Charles holding the church hat of “a bona fide colored lady.” Yet there’s a sense of heartbreak all through The Wire. The game wins – they all lose.