How to shave your legs like a feminist

1. Acknowledge that, as a feminist, you never want to tell other women what to do with their bodies and anything you may or may not say about hair removal is merely a suggestion based on subjective experiences.

2. Grow out a different body hair area to ensure there’s always a part of you that doesn’t unintentionally cater to the male gaze. With smooth legs comes great responsibility to ensure men don’t think you’re on their side.

 

3. If you start dating a beard bro, be sure to grow out enough body hair in the first few months that you can be certain of any feminist ideals he might claim to have (if there isn’t a man, skip to the end of step 4).

4. Once you’re sure of the aforementioned man’s regard for you and the choices you make about your body, or you get bored of the fur covering your lower extremities, decide that it’s time for a shave.

5. Invest in some nice products. You’re doing this for you, after all. May as well get it right.

6. Choose your first product: An exfoliator. These come in several shapes, a konjac sponge, a body brush, exfoliating gloves, or my personal preference, a scrub. I LOVE & Other Stories’ beautiful Body Scrubs.

7. Choose your razor. I always used to preach that expensive razors were a joke and that we should always go withthe 10 for a £1 orange Bic multipack, but I’m told by some of my fellow feminists that women with thicker or coarser hair actually need to take a three-bladed approach to their hair removal. So pick whichever razor you like, but DON’T go for the higher priced pink option just because it claims to be specially designed for your legs. It isn’t.

8. Second product: shaving aid. You don’t need to use special shaving gel on your legs, but don’t cop out by using your shampoo, or worse, conditioner on your legs. I know so many people who do this and I don’t get it – you’re shaving the hair off for heaven’s sake! When you shave, you’re leaving the product on your legs for longer than normal so it’s imperative to use something actually designed for your body, not hair. A moisturising and gorgeously scented shower gel is what you want. Korres Bergamot Pear, or any of & Other Stories’ Shower Gels are perfect.

9. Warm your skin under the shower to soften the skin a bit, and then exfoliate. This’ll help make the exfoliation more effective.

10. Turn the shower off because otherwise you’ll waste a tonne of water. I actually have a little plastic pot in the bathroom, which I fill with water to rinse the hair off the razor as I shave.

View this post on Instagram

#sustainability on the #newyork subway

A post shared by Cia 🌵🌸✨ (@cia.marsh) on

11. Try not to cut yourself. (If you do slip, cool the area asap. Your blood vessels are open from the warm water, which is why shaving injuries bear a striking resemblance to the elevator scene in The Shining. I usually just rinse the blood with cold water and then apply a flannel soaked in cold water as I hobble back to my bedroom…)

12. Should you manage to complete your shave without abandoning due to injury, gently pat your skin dry.

13. Time for the third product. Lush’s Silky Underwear Dusting Powder contains cocoa butter, cornflower and jasmine. It smells unbelievably sexy, and it makes your body feel smoother than smooth. Sprinkling it over freshly shaved legs gives the ultimate smooth shave feeling. I don’t know if people with dark skin tones can use aggressively white dusting powder, and if I’m right, then try my other favourite body moisturiser. Korres Bergamot Pear Body Milk contains aloe vera, almond and shea butter as well as the most beautiful fragrance known to humankind. These are two of the best body products I’ve ever tried.

14. Do this:

15. Go outside and show your legs off! Only if you want to (and you slather on some SPF) of course.

Advertisements

Korres Bergamot Pear Body Milk and Shower Gel Review

In August last year, I visited New York for the first time. The first of many times, I very much hope. My friend and I stayed in a wonderful Airbnb apartment with a friendly couple and an adorable dog. The apartment was in South Williamsburg, and I’m so glad we chose somewhere a bit different rather than going for the centre of Brooklyn or Manhattan. Naturally, being tourists, we spent all our time in those areas anyway, so it was great to see a bit of New York that we wouldn’t have seen otherwise. It really is an amazing city. I ate so much pizza and so many bagels.

img_6173

It was August, and nothing could have prepared me for how hot it was. Hotter than the rainforest – and I would know, I spent two months living in one. I’d worn a very loose dress (#5 on that list) with a strappy back for comfort on the plane, but after getting out of the subway and realising I was surrounded by Hasidic Jewish people, I almost cooked myself keeping my hoodie on as I attempted to find the apartment. At least I didn’t offend anyone!

Before I left for NYC, a combination of job interviews an a terrible cold resulted in me doing some extremely last minute holiday prep. As I wasn’t going to be staying in hotels, I needed shower gel. This compact and beautiful Korres Bergamot Pear Shower Gel bottle caught my eye on ShowerHacks.com. Although it’s 250ml like most shower gels, it just seems to take up less space than others. Maybe it’s my imagination, but a basic bottle of Radox definitely looks bigger, yet holds the same amount. Perhaps Korres are cutting down on packaging? They certainly seem like the kind of company who would – they have a lovely ethos.

img_6178

I didn’t open the shower gel until several days later when, jetlagged, boiling hot and possibly a bit smelly, I undressed in our host’s walk-in shower. Tiled in dark red, with a waterfall shower head attached to the high ceiling, it was cool, quiet and calm in that shower. The water fell heavily and I set it to cold. I flipped the lid and poured some gel onto my travel sponge, and as I massaged the gel over my hot skin I absolutely couldn’t believe how gorgeous the scent was.

The Bergamot Pear fragrance is sweet and fruity from the pear, but there’s a gorgeous freshness and bit of sharpness to lift it up. As I stood there in the shower the scent restored me completely. It woke my mind up and washed away all the drowsiness in my muscles. Although it’s sweet, the fragrance is incredibly clean, so you get all the benefit of a super freshening shower gel without the artificial tang.

img_6169

As the boiling hot New York summer progressed, we spent sleepless nights under thin sheets, and long days exploring the city. Naturally, I showered a lot – waking myself up and cooling myself down in that beautiful bathroom, and whenever I’ve used the shower gel at home since, it reminds me of the wonderful time I had.

With aloe vera gel and wheat proteins, the shower gel isn’t just good for the senses, it’s great for the skin too. The cooling aloe is probably why it felt so good on my skin after long days out, and the wheat has kept my skin soft and supple all through winter too – I’ve been using it almost constantly since the summer.

img_6177

I saw the Body Milk in Liberty’s a while ago, but because I have so many body oils, creams and lotions, I stopped myself from indulging. I really wanted to though. That scent is hard to resist, so after I got my new job, I decided to treat myself. Well, I’m glad I did; This is the ultimate summer body lotion. The milk sinks into the skin immediately, leaving it incredibly soft, and beautifully scented. There’s aloe in there again to cool, along with shea butter and jojoba to soften. I’m completely obsessed with it – I usually to forget to moisturise after a shower because I’m really not a morning person, but since buying this I’ve remembered to do it every single day.

img_6173

I really can’t describe how gorgeous these products are. I know that’s technically the whole point of blogging about products, but to be honest I just really want you to go to your nearest retailer and have a sniff, because I know you’ll buy it. If you’re looking for some fruity, clean and fresh smelling body care for the summer months, these are your guys. At £10 for the Body Milk and £8 for the Shower Gel, you can’t really argue with the price either.

Fig Fiction Body Wash from & Other Stories

Have you ever been in & Other Stories? It’s right next to Oxford Circus tube station, but for some bizarre reason I had absolutely never seen it before until a friend pulled me in there. It’s magic. Everything in there is sophisticated and beautiful, yet affordable. I got a trio of gold bangles (ones that are actually small enough to sit on my tiny hand properly) for £15, and they are gorgeous as well as really high quality. They have great branding too – so far this year they’ve had a lesbian couple and the worlds longest serving supermodel modelling their clothes, and have worked with Lena Dunham.

The thing that surprises me most about & Other Stories is that not only do they sell stunning clothes, bags, shoes and jewellery, they also have an incredible beauty department, with lots of own label stuff including make up, skin care and body care. I haven’t looked at the face stuff much yet, but that’s only because every time I go in I get distracted by their unbelievably beautifully scented body care.

IMG_2019

Although they have a huge selection of stunning scents, I think Fig Fiction is my favourite. I adore the scent of fig, and the fragrance in this body wash is incredibly well developed. It’s so vibrant and fresh, with sweet notes and aa bit of wood. It’s one of the most wonderful smells. In fact the reason I decided to photograph it on these bedsheets is because this body wash kind of makes my nose feel the same way that they make my eyes feel.

20181_918433634876033_2646701728623320570_n

& Other Stories uploaded this to their Facebook recently, isn’t it beautiful? It’s a breakdown of the different scents in their Fig Fiction range. Currents, pepper, plum and rosewood, combined with fresh fig. Perfection. The other thing I absolutely adore about this body wash is that it leaves my skin feeling unbelievably soft. To the point that I noticed it after I got out of the shower and wondered what on earth I’d done to my skin! It would have been easy for them to just make a generic soap with a gorgeous scent, but they’ve actually made an amazing formula too. Plus, it’s only £5!

IMG_2017

My boyfriend bought his mum a body lotion and body scrub for mother’s day, in the Shinjuku Bloom fragrance. When we visited at easter I tried the scrub, and it is amazing. The scent is fresh and light but still really sweet. It’s a sugar scrub and extremely thick, so it’s seriously effective. When my Jurlique Exfoliating Gel runs out I think I’ll be getting one from & Other Stories, especially since they’re £7 instead of £28…

& Other Stories is a beautiful shop with a great ethos, amazing products, clothes and accessories. If you’re in London, pay them a visit, and if you aren’t, pay them a visit.

Silky Underwear from Lush is the Best Thing Ever

Silky Underwear, Lush’s luxurious dusting powder, first caught my eye when I was around 13. Lush was pretty new where I lived and it was very exciting. My mum would talk to the sales assistants and I would wander around the store, reading and smelling everything. Obviously as a 13 year old it caught my eye because it sounded ‘naughty’.

IMG_5875

I didn’t pick it up because I thought I’d get told off. Then as I grew up it seemed like an unnecessary frivolity, so I never used my pocket money or student loan to try it out. Then I got a grown up 9-5, and I thought ‘I’m the kind of person who buys this now’. And now I regret the 25 years I spent without it, because I’ve found several different uses for it already, which would have been great for a teenager or student. You live and learn.

IMG_5876

Everything about Silky Underwear is amazing – the gorgeously sexy scent, the soft, light texture, the way it sinks in and nourishes the skin better than many creams…

Jasmine is one of my favourite scents. I live near the Langham Hotel in London, and on the way home on nights out in the summer I would take a shortcut up Regent’s Street, past their jasmine bushes. The night-blooming flowers would fill the warm air with their perfume, a beautiful treat after the car fumes of Oxford Circus and the sweaty clubs I’d been in minutes earlier. I used to pick a couple of blooms so I could wake up with the scent on my pillow. Naturally, I can’t wait to cover myself in this powder for in the summer. For me, jasmine is the ultimate summer scent. It’s heady, but light enough that it doesn’t feel cloying in the heat.

IMG_5883

It’s just as well that jasmine goes with summer, because Silky Underwear can be used for thigh chafe – I get this sometimes when I wear dresses (I think it depends on what shoes I wear, which should tell you a bit about how ridiculous the concept of a ‘thigh gap’ is. I’ve used it on my underarms instead of deodorant, and it actually kept them dry (and odourless!) So I think it’s going to work great on any thigh issues I may experience.

IMG_5877

The soft, light powder contains cocoa butter to moisturise the skin (I don’t fully understand how they’ve managed to turn cocoa butter into powder, but I’m a fan) and cornstarch, along with magnesium carbonate and kaolin rather than nasty talc. My geologist boyfriend really enjoyed explaining where these two ingredients come from and what they do…I chose not to share this with you, you’re welcome. The scent is jasmine absolute and vetivert oil (which is apparently an aphrodisiac…well helloooo), and it is D I V I N E. IMG_5879

IMG_5882

As you can see here (you might have to squint, I am about as white as the powder) it sinks straight in. My skin is left SO soft, and the scent lasts for ages. It’s a different experience entirely from using a cream as the skin is dry, but incredibly well nourished. This really is the perfect way to moisturise in the summer. I’m in love.

IMG_5875In fact, I loved it so much I actually bought a bottle for my friend in Canada for her birthday – I used the Canadian website* and my PayPal account (and her husband, who kindly messaged me their address and phone number without telling her), and it arrived within three days. The wonders of global connectivity! In the UK Silky Underwear is a mere £4.50, and if you’re of the Canadian persuasion (or know someone who is) then it’s just $7.95

Thank you Lush, we both LOVE THIS 🙂

*didn’t think there was much point trying to send a bottle of white powder across an entire continent in the post.

<a href=”http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/13967723/?claim=u2vank9t8zk”>Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>

Like what you read? Keep up to date here!

TwitterInstagramBloglovin’

Weleda Wild Rose Bath Cream Review

I’m a big fan of Weleda’s Body Care, and would struggle to pick a favourite product (though my favourite from their entire product range is without question the Oat Hair Treatment, oh my god). I adore the Wild Rose, Sea Buckthorn and Birch products in particular, so when I got this Wild Rose Cream Bath as a leaving present from my last job I was pretty chuffed (yeah, they knew me well).

IMG_5808

This is a really thick bath cream, with a massive amount of jojoba oil and olive oil in it. Jojoba is the oil our skin absorbs most easily so you can imagine what sitting in a warm bath full of it will do. Olive oil is really richly nourishing, but takes longer to absorb, so the warm water of the bath allows the oil and the skin to partner up much more readily than normal, and your skin will reap the benefits. IMG_5822

There’s also some rosehip seed oil in there, which is ridiculously good for the skin. Anti-aging, scar fading, good for spots, there’s pretty much nothing rosehip seed won’t at least try and do for your skin. Soaking in it once a week is a bit like giving your skin a lovely nourishing mask. My skin really did feel lovely after I towelled off, and boy was I chilled out.

Then of course there’s the scent. It’s heaven. Weleda are definitely one of the best brands when it comes to rose scented products, and this Cream Bath is probably the most delightful of them all. When you smell it in the bottle its incredibly strong, but once you’ve poured a glug of the creamy liquid into the bath and swirled it around, it is absolutely, perfectly, balanced.

IMG_5825

Treat yourself to one of these beautiful bottles of loveliness. You deserve it. And even if you don’t, I’m sure you will at some point in the future. Get it here, £12.95 for 100ml.

Stress, eczema and Eau Thermale Avène

I’m not going to go into much detail about why I abandoned this blog (a blog that I was really quite proud of to be honest) for six months. What I will say however, is that about two months ago I woke up to an itchy rash all over my torso. Having never seen anything like it before, I was horrified. Apart from dry hands I haven’t had any issues with the skin on my body at all. I ran off to my doctor immediately, and was diagnosed with eczema. When I told the doctor that this was the first time I’d had it, he seemed confused. Was I under any particular stress, he asked.

After I described to him exactly what kind of stress I was under, he sent me off with a steroid cream prescription, an IAPT appointment and instructions to come back if it got any worse. Suffice to say, I am coming out of this experience MUCH stronger, and FAR wiser.

IMG_5247

As I walked from the GP’s to get the prescription, my skin was on fire. I sent my boyfriend a text screaming for help, and he suggested a bath. What on earth was I supposed to put in a bath when I had this all over me? Everything I use is full of essential oils something you should never put on eczema. Lucky for me, my lovely local pharmacist knew exactly what I needed. Eau Thermale Avène Lipid Replenishing Cleansing Oil.

IMG_5402

I put about five pumps of this into a mildly warm bath, and my skin was so, so soothed. The irritation went right down, and I actually didn’t need to use very much steroid cream at all. I used the Cleansing Oil for about two weeks in the shower after that, by squeezing it onto a sponge and using it like soap. It foams up really nicely, and leaves the skin feeling clean and soft.

If you’re struggling with your skin I can’t recommend it highly enough. The soothing nature is incredible, I found that my skin felt calmer as soon as I rubbed it on. I’m so happy I had it.

IMG_5403

Since my skin healed quite quickly, I wasn’t sure what to do with the rest of the bottle (you get a LOT for your money). Then one night I ran out of the makeup wipes I’d been using. I thought this stuff, being so gentle, must be ok for use on the face, and boy was I right! My waterproof mascara melted away after I lathered up twice. So if you decide to try the Cleansing Oil for a pesky skin condition, (which it then ends up curing) I highly recommend using the rest as a makeup remover.

I was having a rough time, and I would like to take a end by saying that IAPT stands for Improving Access to Psychological Therapies, and is the NHS’s attempt to make sure people can get help when they first need it. If you’re struggling with something in your life, and haven’t gone to a doctor about it, you CAN now. This initiative is designed to prevent irreparable damage being done to your mental health, and no matter how mild you think your problem is, they have something in place for you.

Dr Bronner’s Liquid Soaps

I first became aware of the legendary Dr Bronner’s Magic Soaps when I was shopping for eco-friendly products before I went to live in the Amazon Rainforest for two months. We’d been instructed to find bio-degradable natural bodycare and laundry products because the water was pumped back into the river without much filtering, and also when the weather was dry we had to wash in the river instead of using water from the tanks (the Rio Madre de Dios  in Peru if you’re wondering). Obviously damaging the eco-system kind of defeats the object of volunteering for a conservation charity. Anyway, I ended up not buying any shower stuff because my mum happened to bring a load of bio-degradable soap and shower gel back from a hotel, of all places. Hair care was another matter entirely (a ‘five shopping trips later’ kind of matter) though. My interest was piqued, so when I saw some mini bottles in Whole Foods I picked up a Rose and a Lavender, my two favourite scents (no, I’m not your Grandma, I am in fact a twentysomething but I firmly believe in the wisdom of Grandmas the world over).

IMG_1719

I really liked them, though they did leave a very soapy feeling afterwards. Perhaps its because I live in a hard water area? I’m looking at an overview of Fleck water softener products and I have no idea how that would affect it, but anyway. It’s probably just that I’m not used to using a pure soap, and gravitate towards creamy washes and things. Not that there’s anything wrong with those, but I think they do leave your skin feeling different. One thing I like about this brand is how they don’t shy away from their enigmatic roots and feel no shame in identifying as hippies! So many natural brands try to cover this kind of thing up, I even know of one company that won’t let images of plants be used while promoting their (100% natural) products! Companies do this because they want to be seen as mainstream, as lots of consumers assume that natural stuff will smell weird and won’t work. This is such a huge mistake, as how are consumers ever going to learn about the importance of natural cosmetics and skincare if not even the people selling it to them will talk about it?! So its really refreshing to see Dr Bronner’s embrace it completely, plastering their website, social media and even the products themselves with all their green credentials. I mean, some of their stuff is a bit intense for me, but they love the planet and there’s no shame in that.

IMG_1625

I opened the Rose one first, and was surprised because the rose scent is quite subtle. I actually think this smells like Pimm’s – which as far as I’m concerned is a wonderful, wonderful thing. Imagine how Pimm’s would smell but take away the whiff of alcohol and replace it with rose. It’s really, really nice. And the scent doesn’t stick so its just a pleasant experience while washing – you don’t need to worry that people will think you’ve been hitting up the liqueur cabinet! I used this one as a hand soap, and I found that as I used it up I was reaching for my hand cream less and less – a very big deal as my hands are the driest of the dry. We have a nasty chemical-laden antibac soap now and the difference is palpable. I will definitely get some more of this for handwashing!

IMG_1617

Unlike the Rose, the Lavender smells exactly like lavender. In fact, I think this might be the most lavendery-smelling product I’ve ever used! There are some products out there that just don’t have the depth of scent that the pure extract has – like the rest of the ingredients are affecting the essential oil somehow. Not so with this! It’s lovely, and again leaves you nice and moisturised. Both soaps lathered up really easily I found, and I even used one (I forget which but I suspect it doesn’t matter) to clean the loo, to great effect!

I think Dr Bronner’s is a great brand to give your money to, they’re environmentally responsible, ethical traders, campaigners…plus their soaps are lovely. These mini bottles are great for travelling too, they’re about 60ml.