I think I’ll be skipping over the lack of posts recently.  Of course I have guilt and apologise but I’ve no excuses so let’s just move forward….Since my last post a LOT of really cool things have happened and I also somehow managed to get to the happiest I’ve ever been in terms of personal contentment last year, which was a Brucey Bonus!  I don’t know if it’s an age thing or just that I put a lot of effort into being happy on my own, doing new things and creating new memories.  I also moved to the best house with the best housemates. Whatever it was I’m in a really good place now and feel like I’m ready to waffle on again on this blog. There’s always something to write about skin and diet and there’s no point me trying to deny the fact I’ve been pretty rubbish but it’s summer which means lots of happy posts filled with sunshine and new treats. Oh and and probably hayfever.

Travel Essentials

The summer is always a bit of a double edged sword with sensitive skin and Eczema.  The sun works wonders for me but with the longer days and (hopeful) change in wardrobe comes the dreaded pollen count, and for some reason this year has been pretty bad for me so far. I’ve been lucky enough to have two epic holidays already this summer.  One was a travelling holiday around Thailand with the man (which was incredible beyond words and I don’t know why I’ve never done it sooner) and the other was a nice relaxing holiday in Turkey.

I hate having sensitive skin and Eczema when I go away.  Not only do I have to literally take a vat of moisturiser but I also have to take lots of suncream (face AND body) and also all the usual ‘sensitive’ products.I think I should really do a separate post about suncream- I am still yet to find one that doesn’t react with my skin. I don’t know about anyone else but I often have a mad allergic reaction to suncream and come out in a crazy heat-rash style thing all over my body.  Which is about as appealing as finding the last mouldy, dried up lemon in the fruit bowl when trying to make a good gin. NOT the best- especially when you’re trying to look fairly reasonable in a bikini! In Turkey I had a bad reaction to the Boots Soltan brand and last year Piz Buin left me looking like I’d been dipped in acid.There are a few products that I don’t reach the airport without:

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Ultrasun Face SPF30 (for sensitive skin- actually doesn’t irritate my face) Therapeutics moisturising cream (£13.99- one of the BEST budget creams I have ever used, can’t rave about this brand enough, it’s NEVER irritated my face and works wonders) Elemis SOS cream (£52.50, it’s pricey but there just aren’t the words to describe how amazing this product is, it’s my skin saviour and I couldn’t go without it, I can use it even when my skin is irritated) Weleda Sea Buckthorn body wash (£7.95) and Weleda sensitive hand cream (which goes everywhere with me now, although I can’t use it when my hands are particularly bad.  I will do a whole separate blog post about Weleda as it’s a brand I’m new too but I’m already addicted!)

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I will do another post about Weleda as I recently tried out their products and the Buckthorn body wash was one of my faves!

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Besides suncream, Therapeutics and Elemis are my ultimate favourite face creams.  My skin would be lost without them, also I’m addicted to hair accessories- who wouldn’t want a watermelon head scarf??!

Like the chump I am, in the excitement of being on holiday I forgot to take a before pic of my hands- but I did take an after shot.  They’re still a bit rough and dry but the splits are all healed! (They do look pasty but I’m not a total sunworshipper!

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I’ve not been using any steroid cream (screw you doctors and Derms) and I think basically the mass improvement in skin is my body’s way of telling me to pack my bags sharpish and move to a coastline of warmer climates.  I genuinely think the sun does wonders for my skin, mood and pretty much improves life all round.  I’m so envious of all the traveller Instagram accounts I follow and also of all my Insta friends who live by a beach. I recently spoke to another blogger who has eczema and she said hers dramatically healed on holiday, how about yours? I think a huge improvement on my skin is reason enough alone to swap a Victorian semi for a beach house…xxx

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So as a result of my exclusion ‘diet’ I’ve embarked on a mega lifestyle change in terms of what I eat. The thing is I kinda get bored easily and its not always fun to just wolf down a few apples.  I’m a busy person and always on the go so I’ve invested in a Breville Blend Active and it’s Uh-MAZING!!!

There are heaps of other blenders out there, I just wanted a simple one that would mix everything, pulp and all, and crush up anything frozen I have.  I’ve had juicers before but you lose so much just drinking juice and you miss out on all the good stuff!

Buying fruit and veg in bulk is handy for making smoothies and juices, so I always go to markets or hit Aldi and Lidl, although in this heat everything goes off kinda quick- even in a fridge for some reason, which is even more reason to eat your greens and eat up all the fruit.

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Mmm, FRUITY!!!

Banana and Blueberry Choco Smoothie

So my first yummy concoction had to be made up with my favorites- Blueberries and Bananas and what’s a little treat without a treat- so I added some cheeky chocolate of course.

Here’s what’s in it:

  • One banana (frozen)
  • Two massive handfulls of washed blueberrys (my hands are teeny tiny so I chucked in a load more- why do people with Eczema have such tiny hands????!)
  • One and a half dessert spoons of milled Linseed, with sesame, raspberry and blueberry (this gives it some ‘bits’ so it’s not just a smooth ass smoothie)
  • Koko dairy free chocolate milk (add as much as you want but don’t over fill, if you want a thicker smoothie obviously add less and vice versa)
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Be prepared- freeze those little fruits the night before- but don’t forget to chop the banana, they are impossible to slice once frozen (yes I did break my best knife trying to chop them- I’m a chump I know)

 

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Add it all together and give it a good whizz!

 

 

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The finished product, yum yum YUM!!!

I’m going to venture into making juices from vegetables so I will add updates as I go.

Smoothies are great as a brekafast drink, to take to work, as a snack to fill you up and also really good in this hot weather!!!

I genuinely do feel better for drinking these, and there’s infinite combinations to get all the goodness- just make sure you wash all your fruit first and where you can choose organic.

To purchase the Blend Active try

Amazon

, bargain central.

My skin seems to be on the up a little (scared of typing this as I might jinx it but it’s kinda fitting that as I’ve started to eat better and exercise regularly my skin is improving… funny that…)

Have a great week everyone,

Jemma x

So in my last post I said two things have affected my skin, well the first was hayfever, TOTALLY expected that,  the second was heartbreak- DEFINITELY didn’t expect that.

In many western cultures we think that diet affects our skin and bodies, in a lot of the eastern cultures emotions are associated more with skin and health issues. I think it’s a real combination of the two. I was stupidly in love with this boy, for over two years of my life, which isn’t mega long but long enough.  He was my best friend and he smashed my heart to pieces.  It physically hurts.   The pain isn’t just emotional, it’s physically unbearable and with it comes the sleepless nights, the constant headaches, the emotional rollercoaster of anger, sadness, endless tears and the inability to think or feel anything else, and then came the lack of appetite.  I’ve lost 7lbs in two weeks, I was too upset to even eat.  I didn’t care about myself enough to eat.   He was my world, and I was dumb enough to think he meant what he said, Bastardo!

Being cheated on and lied to is the worst feeling.  Breakups are like a death, a person suddenly has to disappear from your life.  I didn’t want this and it’s very difficult.  I find myself welling up. A lot.

My doctor has often told me my skin problems are stress related, well this feels next level.  I must admit after 6 weeks I’ve started to eat a bit more ‘normally’ but one thing I will say- heartbreak is shit for the soul but does wonders for your waistline.  It’s not worth it though.  He definitely wasn’t.

I think emotions really affect my skin.  Not only am I not eating properly and feeding my body with the nutrients it needs but I am not getting enough sleep to function and my brain is switched off.  This all leads to a downward spiral, a catch 22- I’m feeling particularly bad about myself and my self esteem has hit rock bottom.  Of course this makes me think about my skin, and I drive myself nuts thinking about it, and now it’s really suffering.  Seems so unfair- you go through all that crap and end up looking like a lizard!

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Now what to do about myself?  I’ve wallowed in self pity and now I need to pick myself up.  I’ve been running like Forest Gump and hitting the gym like never before, exercise is so good at making you feel better.  I can’t recommend this highly enough, if you feel sad, lost and down please try running.  It clears your head, and yes it does make you think about things but you feel free too.  It certainly has helped me, and my speed during those angry thoughts has improved a lot!  Just make a happy playlist and steer clear of those sad songs…

Some of my friends and people closest to me are going through such tough times, it puts things into perspective,  it might FEEL like someone has died but I remember how it felt to lose my beautiful Mum and this obviously doesn’t compare.  Why should I let some selfish boy bring me down?  I AM a Sensitive Shell but I need to protect what’s on the inside and the outside of that shell and the purpose of this blog is the pursuit of getting happy on the inside and out and finding the best way to heal my soul and my skin : ) and I hope it can help you too.  There are so many sad and lost souls out there and I know all of you who suffer with skin conditions feel this even more, because people can see it.  Pain on the inside isn’t visible but it hurts just the same.  He was a stupid boy and I’d like to stick to the belief that there are good guys out there.

So here’s to the future, and here’s to getting a happy shell on the inside and out.  I have a blank, sad and lonely canvass and I need to fill it with goodness and love.

Now I have a spin class to get to so I’ll speak to you all soon,

Let’s do this! xxx

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So yes it’s been a while since I last posted.  I WAS doing really well on my exclusion diet- I discovered not eating dairy really sorted the rash type Eczema that appeared all over me, and strangely (or not) I discovered that the lack of processed food in my diet really paid off!

I laid off dairy for a month and sort of followed The Eczema Diet book (see past post).

Here’s the results after a month:

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Skin on arm after quitting dairy : )

 

 

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Hands before exclusion (I’d been to the stables so excuse the nails…), and below hands after (skin is still dry but the splits have gone!):

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I felt like I was really making progress, when you’re careful with your diet you start to be careful with everything else- like regular moisturising, only using good products etc. Then I got struck with two things- one I kinda saw coming, which is the dreaded HAYFEVER, and the other I definitely did NOT see coming and I will write about that in my next post… The summer for me is always tough, anyone with Eczema knows heat= sweat and often irritated skin.  My hayfever is very much driven by tree pollen, I get horrific rashes for no reason and even red lumps under my eye.  This year has been particularly bad, even the skin on my face got all red and cracked.  No amount of exfoliating or moisturising treatments have seemed to heal it.I went to the doctors and was prescribed some supersonic antihistamines.  I hate getting MORE things on prescription, having Eczema is so frikin expensive! After two weeks on constant scratching I’ve now quite the antihistamines and low and behold my skin is improving.  I’ve stopped using any sort of perfume at the mo as my neck is super sensitive. How have you all got along with hayfever?  It’s so annoying.  I work outside a lot and I actually had to film a piece about hayfever too and I was sneezing like a trooper.  Its easier to deal with if you can stay indoors but I’m an outdoors type of girl. I swear I never used to get it.  I know I’m literally allergic to air sometimes but I have a horse and even though I cant fill the hay nets I’ve never had it this bad.  It does affect your life and it really gets me down.  Summer means shorts, dressed and more skin on display, no fun if you have Eczema or any sort of skin condition.  I think we should get a special clothing allowance- especially after all the money we pay on prescriptions!!!! Good luck this summer- it’s tough out there! xx

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