Saturday, 13 June 2015

Review | Dove Intensive Repair Self Warming Hair Mask

I’m constantly on the lookout for deep hair treatments. My hair is surprisingly in reasonable condition considering the amount of years I've been dying and styling it, however like most of us, my hair is often in need of a little TLC (especially at this time of year, when the humidity makes me look like a scarecrow). So this evening, I thought... why not try out the Dove Intensive Repair Self-Warming Mask to see if it would help to make a difference?! 

The treatment claims to "generate a gentle heat for a deep hair treatment. This powerful fusion, with KERATIN REPAIR ACTIVITIES (I have no idea why this is capitalised either... maybe to emphasise the overall greatness of this Dove product), penetrates to help repair and restore proteins at a cellular level. Helps restore at the deepest layers to leave hair strong, shiny and up to 10x more resilient against future damage." Well, let's see shall we?

When I first looked at the packaging, I did have a little giggle to myself because it looked like a sample you get in the post instead of a full-sized product BUT once you actually open it (aha!), you will see that inside there is a regenerating treatment mask sachet and a small heat activating serum i.e. the hexagon shaped thing in the photo above. BLOG FACT OF THE DAY: I had to look on the internet to make sure it was actually a hexagon (better to be safe than completely wrong). Now, I know it doesn't look like there's much product in there, but trust me on this one... there is! 

As with most deep conditioning treatments, you have to wash your hair first. I used the Dove Damage Solutions Colour Care shampoo. It smells absolutely wonderful and keeps it looking vibrant and refreshed. I must emphasise the importance of wetting your hair properly BEFORE you apply any sort of shampoo to your scalp (ALWAYS the scalp, NEVER the ends. It isn't necessary and when focusing on your scalp you are washing away the dirt build-up. Conditioner is for the ends... the oldest part of your hair). Whenever I feel like it's time to massage my shampoo in, I always stand under the shower head for just that little bit longer because the wetter it is, the better the shampoo will spread and lather properly. Once you've shampooed the hair, the back of the sachet says to empty it's contents onto just the mid-length and ends of the hair and to leave it in. After that, the heat activating serum is ready to be applied over the top. It will feel very warm as soon as you put it into your hands, so it's best to put it in your hair straight away so it gets the full benefit of the treatment.

It says to leave it in for just three minutes, but I ended up wrapping my head in a towel to make sure the product is warmed even more and left it in for ten minutes instead. It's amazing what you can do in ten minutes... I listened to a few of Backstreet Boy's Greatest Hits (as you do) but it's entirely up to you how you spend your time! When it was time to wash it out, I blasted my hair with freezing cold water instead of lukewarm as it's a proven way to add shine intensity (if you're not crazy like me, then don't do it but it has its benefits!). I noticed afterwards once it had started to air dry that it smelt gorgeous and the ends of my hair felt incredibly softer than before. Different people may get different results when using this Dove treatment, but I am quite pleased with it! Who has used this product and what did you think? 

Friday, 6 March 2015

A British Girl Living the American Dream: Part 1

It's been exactly ONE MONTH since I left the UK for the US. When I boarded my 13 hour flight from London Gatwick to Orlando, Florida, a ton of emotions were flooding through me. Firstly, I'm 21 and this would be the first time I would ever be living on my own (scary thought!). For most people moving out is a challenging but natural part of life; you've grown up and you're now going off into the big wide world. However, most people my age would be moving somewhere else within their own country. I wasn't... I was moving across the Atlantic Ocean to America. I was excited to do something so completely out of my comfort zone, but the thought was also a little daunting. Secondly, how would I cope being five hours behind the people I love? Would I not like being out of the loop with everyone back home? When I applied for a place on this exchange programme, I was so passionate about getting it and put my heart and soul into everything I did. I worked extremely hard throughout the whole process of writing an entrance essay, to being short-listed, to creating a video with audio and finally having an interview in front of a panel. Despite how difficult it was to get a place, I did. And despite how much I thought I would be thrown into the deep end, I went for it anyway. I feel like that is what life should be about - we need to take risks in order to gain. We need to take that final leap of faith so we can turn around and say 'I did it'. This is what makes people so interesting... hearing about their experiences. 

Moving to the USA has taught me many things about myself and about life in general. I am so much more independent now than I have ever been before. I've learnt about the importance of family and friends and not taking them for granted... but also, how to cope being on your own for hours at a time. I'm the type of person who loves sociable settings and engaging in funny conversations with people (I can talk for England...), but I also really appreciate the kind of days where I can just be comfortable keeping myself company; and in my case that usually involves reading a book or going on blogs (hint to add your links below haha). What I find most interesting about America is the people and how different they are to the British. They are very straightforward, always want to help, love to give compliments about anything and everything and don't beat around the bush - which I love! They have also found me to be quite interesting. They don't understand my sarcasm and take everything a little too literally, but other than that they are so interested in my culture and how I live back home. I keep having to explain that I'm not used to eating things in such large amounts and everywhere I go it's obvious they know I'm a non-resident alien because of the way I dress - apparently British people have a very unique sense of style!

I've had to get used to using the American currency on a daily basis. I'm sorry America, I love you but I just can't get my head around the practicality of a one dollar note... it makes me feel like I'm rich when I'm actually far from it. It's also very strange that you can't really walk anywhere. There is so much land here and everything is ten times bigger than back home in cute little England, so I have no choice but to cab it to places, get the bus (whenever they run) or actually walk. If it snows in Georgia everyone goes into a complete panic mode and my university ended up being closed for a week which was quite amusing as I'm so used to that sort of weather at home anyway. Fitting my life into a suitcase was no easy task and had to be completed in shifts on the run up to my departure, but I managed to do it without going over my luggage limit wahoo! I still have two months left of my placement but I'm certainly not wishing it away. I'm so thankful I had the opportunity to do a study abroad programme because after all an experience like this will stay with me for the rest of my life. Have any of you completed a study abroad placement or are you thinking of doing it? Let me know in the comments below and keep an eye out for my Part 2! 


Friday, 2 January 2015

My 10 'Realistic' Resolutions

I guess I should start by saying HAPPY NEW YEAR... I hope 2015 is an amazing year for each and every one of you! It's that time again when most of us reflect over everything that happened last year, what went well, what didn't go so well, and what we would like to change. In the past I have made a ton of resolutions, only to go and drop them a month down the line. This year I've decided to make some better, more realistic ones, that hopefully, (fingers crossed), I'll be able to actually achieve! So here's a list of my top ten New Year's Resolutions... 

1. BE POSITIVE - I know you've probably heard this one before and you're currently rolling your eyes, but I would really love to go through 2015 with a much better outlook on life. In the past I have unfortunately been a rather 'glass half empty' type with a tendency to worry about lots of different things on the inside which makes my anxiety very bad, and I'd like that to change. If something doesn't work out or things are going wrong, we should all try to look at the bright side of things and what IS going right... because nine times out of ten, you still have an awful lot going for you. 

2. READ EVEN MORE BOOKS - See, most people would put to just 'read more' but ever since I was little I've always loved reading any book or story I could get my hands on, so I am a bit of a bookworm. I'd also like to keep track of what I thought about a particular novel after I've read it by jotting down what I thought, so at the end of the year I can see all the books I managed to get through. Unique! 

3. KEEP TABS ON WHAT I EAT/BE A REGULAR GYM GOER - THIS IS THE MOST TYPICAL ONE OF ALL! I don't exactly want to lose a lot of weight but I do want to change my lifestyle for the better, eat lots of protein and fibres, drink more water, and exercise more regularly so I can tone up a bit.

4. TAKE REGULAR SOCIAL MEDIA BREAKS - I'm very guilty of loving social media and using my phone all.the.time. I'd like to have more quality time with the people who I care about the most. It'd be nice to get off Facebook every once in a while and start living in the real world!  

5. LOOK AFTER MY SKIN - I'd like to stick to a regular skincare regime where I steam it once a week and look after it every day. I want skin like porcelain and I can get quite self conscious about it when it doesn't look up to scratch. 

6. MAKE NEW FRIENDS - Although I love my oldest friends who I've known for years, it would be nice to expand the social circle a little more this year and start hanging out with lots of different people. 

7. FIND A JOB I LOVE - This is a big one for me! After I return from my semester abroad in the USA, I want to quit my current job and find one I actually enjoy and find useful. It'd be cool to try something I've never done before. I've always worked in retail, so it would be a breath of fresh air if I got something that was secretarial in some way. 

8. SPEND MORE TIME WITH FAMILY - It's hard when life gets so busy we forget to spend it with the people we live with. When I look back over 2014, I realise now that I should have spent a lot more time with my family than what I did.  

9. FOCUS ON WHAT'S IMPORTANT - I am naturally quite an organised person, but this year is all about prioritising! That doesn't mean I'm not going to have any fun, but I need to stay focused to achieve what I want. 

10. LET THE LIGHT IN - This sounds very spiritual doesn't it?! 2015 will all be about radiating love, spreading positivity, making others happy, and most importantly, learning to love myself for who I am.    

Last but not least, I'd like to take this opportunity to personally thank YOU - my readership over 2014. When I was a teenager, one of my favourite things in the world would be to read blogs, and I looked up to these incredible women that wrote them. I quickly became intrigued with it and loved how you could leave someone's website having learnt something, hearing about their day or just feeling inspired by what they had said. I decided I had nothing to lose and thought I'd join in and give it a go too! When I first started writing Beloved Jaine a year ago, I could never have imagined in my wildest dreams that the viewer hits would be 3000+, people from all over the world would be reading it in their own language, I would have strangers sending me very touching messages saying that something I'd written had made them cry (in the good way) and I would have over 70 followers on Bloglovin. I know that this doesn't sound like much to some, but to me it is a big deal. It's something I've always wanted to do and it's so overwhelming to know that my blog has grown from being just something I was doing in my spare time, in the privacy of my bedroom, to now promoting it as a business, I guess you could say, to people I meet at launch parties and special events. 2014 has been a crazy ride... I know in my heart that I still have an awful lot to learn about all of this. I'm still young and haven't even graduated yet! However, I definitely feel I have pushed myself in the best way possible to make this blog the best it can be. I've always had a streak of determination and drive, but I could never have foreseen things like beauty companies and PR people contacting me to ask if I can work with them... I honestly thought my friends would be the only ones reading it! To me, this will always be a hobby that I'm very passionate about - but knowing people are starting to take me seriously is so rewarding.  

I've met some incredible fellow bloggers, journalists and PR people offline, as well as online, and everyone has been so welcoming and lovely in this huge blogging community... I've even made a few friends who I'm sure I'll be meeting up with and working with in the not so distant future. I can't thank these people (and you!) enough... it sounds cliche but I really do appreciate every single follower, reader and brand who takes a little time out of their busy lives to listen to what I have to say. I still see myself as awkward Aimee, an average person who was never really that interesting - but I guess I must be! I now have this awesome platform to share all of my life/beauty/fashion tips and experiences with. I hope you stick with me this year! All my love, Aimee xxx