chloehelenmiles

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I’ve been struggling with sleep anxiety for a few years. Thankfully it doesn’t effect me every night, but in light of the current situation it has been more frequent than usual. I’m sure it is the same for a lot of you. And some of you might even be experiencing it for the first time.

Sleep anxiety is surprisingly common and completely understandable, especially given the current climate.

There are a few tricks I use to help reduce my anxiety before going to bed, and to help tackle sleep anxiety if it arises.

Before Bed

  • Create a nighttime routine. Your brain will begin to associate this with feeling tired, and falling asleep, and it should help you to switch off.
  • If you’re already feeling anxious, have a bath before bed. It will help your mind and body relax.
  • Drink a sleepy tea. My favourite is Tesco’s Wind Down Infusion, but I also like Pukka’s Night Time tea, or any chamomile tea.
  • Try to limit your screentime. Staying off your phone for an hour before bed is ideal.
  • If possible, keep your bedroom as a sleeping room only. Although it’s especially difficult at the moment, avoiding working in your bedroom will help your brain associate the room with sleep and relaxation.

In Bed

  • Use a sleep spray or mist. They are normally scented with lavender or chamomile and are wonderful at helping you switch off. This Works Pillow Spray is highly recommended but there are many budget options available too.
  • Use CBD. CBD is incredible at reducing anxiety and comes in many forms. At night Sam and I both love using Balance Me’s CBD Roller Ball, we swipe it over each wrist and it makes a huge difference in how quickly we fall asleep as well as our quality of sleep. It’s scented like a sleep mist too!
  • Use the Headspace app. This app has been invaluable to me, it’s helped to massively reduce my anxiety not just around sleeping but also around flying and even pain. I cannot recommend this app enough.
  • Listen to a Headspace Sleepcast. Their Sleepcasts are stories with ambient sounds which you can adjust so you can hear more of the story or more of the sounds. My favourite is ‘Beachcomber’. They all start with a 5 minute wind down exercise which always makes me feel much more settled. You can also do a wind down exercise on it’s own.
  • Count back from 1,000. Although this is the simplest trick of all I have found it the most effective. I count back slowly, visualising each number popping up one by one and saying the number in my head, 9ninehundred, and 9ninety, 9nine, 9ninehundred, and 9ninety, 8eight, 9ninehundred, and 9ninety, 7seven… I have only ever counted as far back as seven-hundred-and-something before falling asleep. I find this incredibly effective whenever I’m feeling anxious. When I’m feeling very anxious my mind often gets distracted from counting but every time I notice I’m not counting anymore I go straight back to the last number I remember and continue.
  • If you’re still feeling anxious get out of bed and do something you have to focus hard on to distract your mind until you feel tired again. I like to do Sudoku’s when my mind is racing.

I’ve also found it very helpful in the current climate not to read the news or talk about the situation before bed or in bed. Trying to stay completely present and not considering what is happening outside of your personal space helps massively to reduce anxiety. There is a lot of pressure to be constantly up to date and it is a privilege to be able to turn off from the outside world, but we can’t take care of anyone else without first taking care of ourselves so please do not feel guilty for giving yourself some respite.

I hope you are all doing as well as you can be. Sending my love to you all.

Stay home xx

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I’ve wanted to try Glossier for a long time. I was put off because I’d seen a lot of mixed reviews online and wasn’t able to test the products in person first. And for some reason I thought that Glossier weren’t cruelty free, so I was pleasantly surprised when I found out they are and got straight to ordering.

When I made my order I thought all of their products were completely vegan too, which sadly isn’t the case. I should have searched a little harder before buying! But luckily two of the products I ordered are completely vegan, and the other just contains beeswax (which I know is used by some vegans) so although I personally wouldn’t order it again, I will still include it in my review.

They offer free UK shipping when you spend over £30. And at the checkout you can choose to receive less packaging, which is fantastic, I did and received minimal packaging which was all completely recyclable.

Glossier Perfecting Skin Tint

Perfecting Skin Tint, £20, is completely vegan, and is the product I was most excited to try. I’ve been opting for a natural look more and more over the last year so I wanted to find a base product that was really sheer and almost undetectable to easily create that ‘no makeup’ makeup look.

My very first impression of this product was ‘It’s very small!’ (which is never a good start). It’s only 30ml, the bottle is about the same length as my index finger. I was preparing myself for disappointment but I absolutely loved it. It is exactly what I was looking for. It creates a healthy looking even glow. It is almost undetectable on your skin, even getting as close as I can to the mirror I can’t see the product, it really is a second-skin finish. It’s really lightweight and super sheer, there’s no real coverage whatsoever. You can build the product slightly for more cover but it is still very minimal. If you walked past someone with this on you would probably think they weren’t wearing makeup but had a great skincare routine, took vitamins, and drank plenty of water.

I would have to rate this product 5/5. It is exactly what I hoped it would be. I used shade G9.

Generation G Lipstick ‘Cake’

The Gen G Lipstick, £14, is also completely vegan and another Glossier product I’ve been dying to try. It always looks amazing when I see people wearing it online, and it seems to suit everyone.

It comes in 6 shades. I chose ‘Cake’ which is described as a ‘subtle peachy nude’ because I wanted something natural looking. It looked darker than I expected in person, but when I applied it the colour was so close to my natural lip colour it was a bit freaky. Again, it was exactly what I was hoping for. My only complaint is that it was a little harder than I expected, I hoped the lipstick would have a more balmy consistency. But it’s perfectly matte, not drying, and has stayed well throughout the day.

I would rate this product 4/5. I would score it 5/5 if it was more balmy.

Glossier Stretch Concealer

Contains Beeswax.

I hadn’t heard much about Glossier’s Stretch Concealer, £15, before I bought it but I was looking for a very subtle creamy concealer and there was an offer to buy the skin tint and concealer together for £29 so I thought I would try it.

I’m gutted that it contains beeswax because it is fantastic. Again, it was exactly what I was looking for. The coverage is medium, I definitely wouldn’t consider it full coverage, but it is buildable. The main thing I love about it is that you really can not see this product on your skin. It just melts straight in like the skin tint. I’m so impressed with both of these products.

I would rate this product 5/5. I just wish it was completely Vegan! I used shade G9.

Final Thoughts

I had heard so much about Glossier, and thought they would turn out to be an Instagram brand that had been completely overhyped. I was ready to be hyper critical of their products, but I am so impressed with all of these. I wish I had tried Glossier sooner and I will definitely be trying more from them. Click here for a list of all of their vegan products!

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Christmas is without a doubt the hardest time of the year to be sustainable. But you’ve clicked this link, which shows you care, and that’s a great start!

Maybe you have a friend who’s passionate about the environment and you’re struggling to find a sustainable option for them this Christmas. Maybe you’re trying to be more sustainable yourself and want a link to subtly (not at all subtly) hint to your family members. Or maybe you’re super sustainable and want to buy sustainably for all of your family and friends. Whatever the reason, here are some great sustainable gift ideas that can help.

 

Gift an Experience

Gifting an experience is my absolute favourite, I would always rather buy someone something to do than something to have. Take someone to the cinema, a play, a gig, go for a meal, a massage, a cookery class. Experiences don’t have to be expensive, but doing something together will always be special.

If you’re looking for a luxurious experience, I highly recommend Tredwells Vegan Tasting Menu (£75). The menu was created by Chantelle Nicholson, an incredible chef who supports conscious cooking and reducing food waste. Not to mention every single course is mind-blowingly delicious.

 

Support Charitable Organisations

Common Ground Collective is new on my radar, I just came across them last month and I’m so glad I did. They provide therapeutic and creative workshops for people with profound learning disabilities and complex needs. 100% of sales from all of their products go straight back into the charity. Their products are so beautiful and affordable, Small Baubles are £10, Large Baubles are £13.50, and some of their Potters in Protest bowls are as little as £3.50! They make perfect Christmas gifts. I just bought a shell from their Potters In Protest collection (as a gift for myself lol).

Also new on my radar, The Soap Co is a social enterprise based in East London. All of their products are crafted in the UK and 80% of their staff are blind, disabled, or otherwise disadvantaged. Their latest collection is certified plastic free, and they aim to become a completely circular brand. They have a great range of gift sets available from £15.

 

Gift Vintage

Buying vintage is one of the most sustainable ways to add new clothes to your wardrobe (or someone else’s). Not to mention it’s extremely satisfying to get a rare gem that you’re not going to see anyone else wearing.

There are a few pieces still available on my vintage shop The Slow Vintage Shop, and more coming before Christmas, so keep your eyes peeled!

Some other great vintage shops to check out are;

 

Support Sustainable Clothing Brands

Jakelle Studios is a wonderful small sustainable brand. Their bodysuits (£69) are made of bamboo and hand made to order in Devon. Because items are made to order delivery can take 7-10 days, so be sure to check Christmas availability before you order! (Photo via Instagram @chloe_tesla)

Lucy & Yak are a cult favourite for sustainable shoppers. They’re an independent brand based here in Brighton, their items are ethical, sustainable, and hand-made. They’re well known for their amazing dungarees which are currently available from £22 (I bought my cousin a pair for her birthday, she loves them!), but have lots of other lovely pieces too.

Know The Origin is a one-stop shop for all things sustainable. They stock a huge range of eco friendly brands and products at really reasonable price points (from £2.99). Their Christmas Collection is a great place to start if you need inspiration.

 

Luxury Sustainable Gifts

Maria Nila is my favourite haircare brand ever. I’m sure you all know this already because I never stop going on about them. I’ve been using their products religiously for four years, I’ve got half my family hooked on them too. And I just started working with them this year, which has been a dream come true. This year they’ve got amazing Holiday Gift Boxes which contain a full sized shampoo and conditioner, and one of their lovely handsoaps from £39. All of their products are 100% Vegan and Cruelty Free, sulphate and paraben free, and their packaging is carbon neutral. I would be ecstatic to receive one of their gift boxes for Christmas!

Rêve En Vert is an online luxury sustainable fashion and lifestyle retailer stocking a wide variety of luxury conscious brands. I recently joined them to make a Christmas gift box (available from £60) and was completely spoilt. I picked two EYM candles, I’m currently lighting this one very sparingly because it smells so wonderful I want it to last forever. They also have lots of lovely gifts on their website for under £50.

 

Ask Them

The best thing we can do to gift sustainably is simply ask someone what they want or need. Then we can guarantee a gift will not be unwanted or wasted. Although it might not seem as exciting for a gift not to be a surprise, it will definitely be appreciated. Last year my sister’s boyfriend bought me razor blade heads and I was genuinely thrilled. I dread buying them because they’re so bloody expensive. And they’ve lasted me all year, I’ve still got a few in the cupboard! I will probably ask for a re-stock this Christmas.

And if someone you know doesn’t want anything, why not make a donation in their name? For £28.87 you can reserve a place at a Crisis UK center for a homeless person this Christmas.

 

 

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Sustainability is a topic that’s been floating around a lot at the moment. But it is not a trend, a phase, a fleeting thought- It’s important, and it’s here to stay. It’s an issue I’ve become progressively more invested in over the past year, and it’s a topic that I have actively avoided talking about online.

I’ve avoided talking about it because it scares me. I’m a very sensitive person and I do my best to avoid conflict wherever possible. I’m sure we have all seen or experienced the aggressive comments of a holier-than-thou activist, or the ‘witty’ jibes of the willfully ignorant. Unfortunately, writing about sustainability opens the door to a wave of potential negativity and that’s why I’ve put it off for so long. But it’s too important, and too necessary now, to put it off for any longer so I will have to suck it up and hope for the best.

Living more sustainability is a journey, it’s a process that takes time. We can’t be perfect, it is not possible to be completely sustainable, but we can make lots of changes to reduce our personal impact on the earth.

It is important to remember that some sustainable and ethical changes aren’t available to everyone, for a multitude of reasons: money, time, availability, physical ability. If there are limits to what you can personally do, please do not feel guilty about it. Focus instead on the changes you can make and any progress you have already made.

It is also important to remember that we do not fully know the people we see online, and we cannot judge another on their behaviour if we do not know their circumstances. We can of course help to recommend sustainable alternatives, and encourage and support others to make changes. But no lasting changes are made out of guilt. It’s unfair and counter-intuitive to shame and guilt each other.

There is so much I want to share on this topic, and I’m always learning more. So I just wanted to quickly introduce it here to open the door.

In my next posts I’ll be sharing what sustainability is and why it’s important, my personal journey to live more sustainably, examples of sustainable changes we can make with and without money, and how to cut down your fast fashion consumption.

If there is anything specific you would like me to talk about with regards to sustainability let me know in the comments here, by email, or on Instagram!

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Bon Iver, All Points East with Sam – Sunday 2nd June
Tredwells, Covent Garden with Mum & Carly – Wednesday 19th June
First dinner at my new apartment, Brighton – Sunday 23rd June
West Wittering Beach, Dylan’s Birthday – Tuesday 25th June
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