My Weight Loss Journey

weight loss

This is a highly requested post and I’ve put off doing it for a while as I wanted to see how things panned out.  As most of you who have met me in real life or follow me on Instagram (here), I have been dieting and have lost a considerable amount of weight in the last year. WARNING – THIS IS TEXT HEAVY!

Stats
Weight Before: 17st 8lbs
Weight After: 11st 11lbs

Clothing Size Before: 22
Clothing Size After: 14

I started on my weight loss journey on 1st January 2017, I had made it my new years resolution to become fitter and healthier, with this also came the realisation that I had a lot of weight to lose.  Following lots of people on Instagram who were super fit and healthy made me realise (not that I didn’t already know) that my lifestyle wasn’t great, I was very overweight and I had already started to see signs that it was affecting my long-term health.  My back has always been a problem, being a veterinary nurse means that I am stupid and lift things that are far too heavy for me, it means that I’m far too stubborn to accept help with lifting things and often there aren’t many people around that can help.  This became more of a problem at the end of 2016 where it suddenly got a lot worse, I found out that I had herniated a disk in my lower spine (lumbar region) and had to be put on a massive dose of painkillers just to get through the day.

(This is when we climbed Ben Nevis in September – 1st picture almost all the way up, 2nd at the summit)

The more I thought about it the more I realised (along with the gentle guidance of the doctors) that I needed to lose weight.  I got offered to take prescription medications to help me lose weight as my BMI was very high however I felt that it was a journey that I needed to take on my own and didn’t take these.

Initially, I started off at the typical place – Slimming World, this was an excellent starting place for me as I wanted something that could keep me motivated whilst losing weight and the groups were very helpful, I had a fantastic consultant who praised my weight loss and kept me on track.  I lost 3 stone within four months with Slimming World.

Before I had an understanding of nutrition I thought that if I didn’t eat exactly what I’d planned, I’d undo all of the hard work that I’d done.

(First picture August 2016)

The more I went to Slimming World the more I realised how backwards it was, therefore I decided to research and teach myself a bit of nutrition!  I read articles online, medical journals, scoured the internet for information, I even watched Youtube videos on meal preparing and nutrition.  The body isn’t meant to lose weight so fast and as a result, I have suffered, I have developed gallstones which are an exceptionally painful condition which can be brought on by a super low-fat diet and sudden weight loss.

After all my research I decided that the diet IIFYM (If it fits your macros) would suit my lifestyle perfectly.  It meant that I could eat whatever I liked, as long as it fit my macronutrient requirements for the day.  I used the app MyFitnessPal to track my macros and still do log them every day.

Along with the diet change, I started exercising in February, I started doing the couch to 5k program from the NHS which teaches you to run 5k gradually over 8 weeks.  I have to admit I was so unfit that I had to do the week one for three weeks in a row (running 3 times a week) as I couldn’t get past that stage.  After I’d mastered running (well… sort of) I started being more adventurous with my exercise, I now lift weights and go to spin class along with running.

Something that I never thought I’d be able to do was Tough Mudder, I was conned into (thanks, daddy dearest) signing up to do Tough Mudder earlier in the year.  I decided that if I was going to do it, I’d raise some money for charity at the same time.  I managed to raise almost £150 for the Blue Cross Animal Charity as well as completing Tough Mudder!  I’ve already signed up for next year as it was a great laugh and although I was covered in bruises for weeks, I’ve not had so much fun in a long time.

(first picture post Tough Mudder, Second picture before the Subway 5k)

I’d like to extend a special thank you to my dad, he has supported me, pushed me – both physically with a stick whilst running and mentally with encouragement, and he’s brought me my running kit even when I was feeling demotivated!  Another thank you to my mum who always encourages me to eat right and also my work colleagues for being the best support even though you all tempt me with tasty foods.

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So far I’ve lost just under 6 stone and the change in my life has been amazing, I’ve got more energy, better skin, and I feel generally happier!

I hope this post has given you some insight into my weight loss and I haven’t bored you too much!

Love

Rhia xo

 

 

 

Illamasqua Gel Sculpt Review

I picked up this product in a recent Beauty Bay sale where it was reduced down to £20 (compared to the £25 retail price), I’ve had my eye on this product ever since my friend’s wedding where the makeup artist used it on her and it looked amazing!

The gel itself comes in three shades, two blush shades (Charm and Fluster) and one contour shade called Silhouette.  I was sceptical about buying a contour shade that appeared so dark in the tube as I’m extremely fair skinned, however the reviews on the website were very encouraging explaining that it was a very buildable product and suitable for even the most pale of people.
The product itself is a gel like (hence the name I’m sure!) cream consistency and it comes as a stick, this makes it very user-friendly.  Once applied to the skin it doesn’t feel heavy and it blends out like a dream!  I use this product either on its own without any foundation or on the top of a foundation and both finishes are fantastic.  The one thing that I would say is that I would always apply it before applying any powder products as it won’t blend out and create a “cake” face if applied after powder.

I started off quite hesitant with applying and applied a small amount to where my contour would usually sit (in the hollows of my cheeks) and blended it out, after my initial trial, I realised that I could indeed use more product for a more effective contour without it looking too dark or muddy on my complexion.

After using this a few times I have extended my application to include around my forehead and when going “full-glam” contouring my jawline and nose.


A picture of me and my sister at a family party the other day

I would say that this is an extremely versatile product and well worth the money I spent on it.

Love

Rhia xo

Lancome Teint Idole Foundation Review

tient idole

Having previously raved about this foundation in my House of Fraser event post, I thought I’d write a post dedicated to this fantastic foundation!

Having been an Estee Lauder Double Wear fanatic since I can remember, it was a shock to me to find a foundation that I actually prefer.  Lancome has recently extended the shade range of the Teint Idole Foundation so I was able to get a match.

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The Lancome Teint Idole Foundation retails at around £30 depending on the shop which I’d say is averagely priced for a high-end product.  It contains an SPF of 15 which isn’t an issue for me as I wear an SPF under my foundation whenever I wear it anyway, this may be a problem if you’re into flash photography as it may cause some flashback, especially if used in combination with a talc based setting powder.

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It has a light floral fragrance which I find nice and it isn’t chemically smelling – which is one of the very few downsides to the Estee Lauder Double Wear foundation.  For the application, I use a flat-topped kabuki brush for buffing in and then using a beauty blender to bounce the rest of the product in (I usually spray this with setting spray for longevity).

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The finish is a very natural but medium to full coverage buildable look which stays put all day.  I’ve tested this out at work (as a veterinary nurse) and it stayed in place ALL DAY, through a trip to the gym, all the way to bedtime where it removed nicely with my Garnier Micellar Water.

To conclude I think this foundation is an excellent product and I can certainly see why it is being raved about by all the current beauty gurus!

Love

Rhia xo

House of Fraser Blogging Event

house of fraser event

Two weeks ago I had the pleasure of attending a blogging event held at House of Fraser.  The wonderful staff members there had arranged for a select group of bloggers to have treatments at some of the stalls selling products.

We were met by the lovely Jake who had arranged the whole event along with the fabulous Flo a representative from House of Fraser.  We were greeted with a glass of bubbly and began socialising!

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Once we had had a good chat with the other bloggers and the organisers of the event, I headed to the counter that I had been assigned.  I was booked in to have my makeup done at the Lancome counter, this suited me fantastically as I was attending my a birthday party that evening.

The Lancome representative did a fantastic job of my makeup giving me a subtle pink smokey eye, she used the highly raved about Lancome Teint Idole foundation which I’d been meaning to get a sample of for a long time (for reference I’m shade 005), I have to say that this foundation has become my new favourite, it’s so light weight but gives an excellent coverage.  As a massive fan of Estee Lauders Double Wear foundation, I much prefer this.  I never thought I’d say that I prefer a foundation to the double wear as it has been my holy grail foundation for the past four years!

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After having our treatments done, we had a chance to have a chat with the Vita Liberata representative.  I’ve always been VERY hesitant to try fake tan as I’m pale as a ghost and have a mental image of me ending up like Ross from Friends!  She applied the new body blur in the shade Light to my arms and I LOVED the look it gave me, I actually looked a healthy colour!

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(Photo credit: Zoey Glitter)

At the end of the day, there was a VERY generous raffle with some amazing prizes (congrats everyone who won!) I had such an amazing day and I appreciate all of the hard work that was put in by everyone to pull this together.

Love

Rhia xo

P.S Pro Makeup Haul

p.s pro makeup haul

Last Wednesday I had the day off work so we decided to head into Nottingham to do a little shopping.  I’ve heard lots of rumours about the infamous unicorn brushes coming to Primark soon so I had to check it out to see if they had them in the store – I was not disappointed!  I found myself surrounded by dupes for all cult and highly sought after products, here are a few that I picked up!

Firstly I managed to snag a pack of the “Unicorn” makeup brushes, they’re right on trend at the moment! They feature a unicorn horn handle and pastel bristles which make them look totally adorable.  I’ll be honest, I only picked these up so they could look pretty on my vanity table, however, they really surprised me with the quality and blendability (not too sure if that’s a word if I’m honest!).  At only £9 I think these are an excellent introduction to makeup brushes and even some pretty ones for the seasoned makeup collectors!

Next, I picked up the “Halographic” highlighter stick for £4 which seems to be a dupe for the Milk Holographic stick (retailing at $28).  The stick initially seemed quite dry but upon wiping the top layer off with kitchen roll, it became an exact copy for the Milk Holographic stick.  The highlight is an iridescent purple with a blue shift, it’s very hard to describe as it throws so many different colours in different lights.  I wouldn’t advise applying it straight from the stick as it can remove other makeup beneath, I used a damp beauty sponge and bounced it across my cheekbones for the best results.  This has become a firm favourite highlighter these past few days and I think it’s going to be a summer staple for me!

Finally is the Pixie Kisses lipstick for £1, this is a dupe for the Too Faced Unicorn Tears lipstick which is a highly sought after cult product (retailing for £20 – if you can find it in stock!)  This immediately drew my attention due to it’s shiny packaging (yes, I’m like a magpie) and for only £1 I couldn’t resist!  It applies nicely to the lips and shade adjusts to the pH of your skin (hence it’ll look different on everyone).  I LOVE the way this lipstick looks on me and again, will be another summer staple.

I hope you all enjoyed this post, I really enjoyed testing out these products!  Have you picked any good products up from Primark recently? If so let me know in the comments down below.

Love

Rhia xo

Intu Victoria Centre SS17 Style

intu event 2

Saturday I was fortunate enough to be invited to the spring/summer 2017 fashion event at Intu Victoria Centre as part of the Nottingham Fashion Week.  We met up at Cafe Rizzoli where we were greeted by the owner of the chain who as last time, gave us impeccable service.  We enjoyed a Bellini and truffles in the sunshine and had a good natter before heading down to where the main event was being held (outside boots).

We were lead down to the main foyer, where we treated to a fashion show.  I appreciated the thought behind the show as they showed different body types, ways to dress up/down outfits to save money, and different styles.  The trends this season are right up my alley with embroidery, denim, ruffles, and chokers all key pieces this season!

There were “paparazzi” around the centre taking snaps of everyone in the centre who were dressed up (very stylishly may I add!).  I managed to snap these couple of picture of them!

After the fashion show, we were set a challenge to find items that matched a theme we were given, my theme was seeing red.  I picked up a lovely red choker style t-shirt in Topshop by the brand Tea and Cake which is super cool!  I also picked up some sparkly Toms which were amazing as my feet were suffering a bit after wearing heels all day.

After our style challenge we were taken out for food at Handmade Burger Co, this is the only part of the event I was a little disappointed in.  The food took a long time to come out and was cold when it arrived, the drink orders kept being messed up, and the servers didn’t seem to know what was going on.

 I appreciate the generosity from the Intu Victoria Centre staff as they again pulled out all the stops for us bloggers.  I’d like to say special thanks to media team and cartwright communications for holding such wonderful events for us bloggers.

Love

Rhia xo

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New Product // February 2017

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These are just a few products that I have gotten recently and have been loving through the whole of the month (well since I got them!)

The first item/s are the Clinique Crayola Chubby Lip Crayons, I got the whole set of these whilst at the Intu Victoria Centre Galentines event and have been in love with them ever since.  They vary in colours, most of which are of a pink undertone, and they also vary in opacity.  There eight shades all together, three of which are classed as being “intense”, these shades are much stronger in pigment and make wonderful going out lipstick.

They have a lovely feel to them and are super moisturising (excellent for the winter months.)  I’ve tried to swatch them as best as I can, however as my camera is for a right handed person (as they all are) I had to swatch with my non-dominant hand which.. is a little messy!  img_0973

The shades are in order from left to right (top to bottom) and I have to say I love them all!  I’m so glad I managed to snag one of these boxes as they retail for only £35 which is a massive saving on the whole price.

The next two products are by Urban Decay (which has to be my favourite brand).  I got one of their liquid moondust eyeshadows and one of their heavy metal eyeliners, I adore both of the products as they’re totally individual.

The heavy metal eyeliners have been around for many years (I remember my mum having one or two when I was at school) and have recently come back into fashion.  I got the shade Distortion which is a white glitter base with reflects of gold, green, and maybe a hint of pink.  It’s really difficult to explain the colour but the quality of the liner is excellent, it stays on ALL DAY, and really brightens up a look.

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The liquid moondust eyeshadows, I could rave about this all day every day.  It has an amazing formula which is not too wet or sticky (something which put me off some of the nyx liquid eyeshadows)  I have the shade recharged which is a great colour and can be blended out with other eyeshadows (I usually use the urban decay naked 3 palette) to make it into a fantastic look.

Overall my month of February was an amazing month for blogging, I got invited to some fantastic events with some amazing people.

Hope you have all had a great weekend and I’ll see you soon!

Rhia xo

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