I Have Embraced

If you're as deep in the Body Image Movement (body positivity, self-love, body image confidence etc) as I am, then there's no way you've escaped seeing the trailer for this movie online: 



Needless to say, when I found out Taryn was bringing screenings of Embrace to the UK and doing a Q&A at the premiere, I bought tickets immediately. I've been waiting for this film since the Kickstarter was up and running. 

After all, who doesn't need a good, healthy dose of body image love in January, when every diet on the earth is jammed into our faces?

Embrace Taryn Brumfitt


Taryn's film is kind but alarming; I know women talk badly about themselves (I've been there and done that) but standing on *this side* of the body acceptance fence, looking back to the other side is shocking. It's comforting to see how far I've come over the last couple of years but horrible to see that so many people, women in particular, still say terrible things about their bodies to themselves and to others.

She interviews a broad range of women from all over the world about their perceptions of themselves and their bodies; not all of it is negative, some is so fabulously positive that it brings you to tears (Harnaam Kaur is so fucking fierce that it's unreal and Nora Tschirner is my new favourite person EVER).

Embrace is essentially a love letter from Taryn to her daughter, Mikaela, encouraging her to not waste her lifetime stressing about getting the *perfect* body and to simply embrace the one she has and live her life to the fullest - a message that every woman (and man, for that matter) can benefit from hearing and taking onboard.

The UK premiere was in Covent Garden, a red carpet was set up for anyone who wished to have their photo taken with Taryn to do so. I was almost last in the door as I was rushing over from work, but walking in to a cinema foyer and seeing these two amazing women immediately set the tone for the night:


Body Image Movement


That's Megan, you might know her as BodyPosiPanda on Instagram, she's fabulous. Look at her hair!

The Q&A afterwards was almost as emotional as the film itself, with many questions being posed about how get in the right frame of mind for embracing your body, how to inspire daughters, younger girls in schools ... hearing the voices of women break as they asked for help and guidance really brought home how important this film is and the changes it can make to the world if we all take heed of the notion and begin to make the first change with ourselves.

Embrace screenings are happening all over the UK right now, and they're demand-based, so if you don't buy tickets, they don't happen. I cannot recommend this film enough. I wish something this positive was out there when I was starting my body acceptance journey 2 years ago, so if you're just starting out, or on the way, or looking to support others on their journey it's well worth a watch.

Tickets can be purchased here (or here if you're in Ireland) and you can get involved with the Body Image Movement here

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You Beauty (part IV)

It's time for a long overdue beauty post as I've been testing out a good handful of new products since I wrote my last beauty post (in July, where did that time go?).



Skin

In my never ending quest to try every primer on earth, I got a free sample of the MAC Prep & Prime Face Protect Lotion SPF 50. 

MAC Prep & Prime  Face Protect Lotion


Sounds like an SPF but is a primer, I promise. It looks just like a moisturiser and it smells like good SPF but it does prime well. I think I'm use to ones that feel super matte and smooth on my face so this one felt weird on application but as it settles in it makes your skin feel like it's been brushed with soft powder. It feels luxurious. I wouldn't buy it, as it's almost £25 for 30mls, but it's been a nice one to test. 

My other never ending quest is for highlighter; something which I wear rarely but when it's on I want it *so bright* that I could guide in ships with the Coastguard. Turns out, I had my ideal one all along, hidden at the back of my make-up box: my Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick. 

Bobbi Brown Shimmerbrick Pink


I have this in Pink Quartz and as much as I don't think it was right on my skin when I bought this (back in 2012 for a good £20) it seems perfect now. Maybe I'm just a bit more on the ball when it comes to highlights, blushes and bronzers these days (I can thank my UD Gwen Stefani blush pallette for that education), but this now seems to really work with my skin tone. Let's also not forget that I'm 5 years older now, and my skin has changed. Either way I'm glad I've not wasted £20. 



Eyes

First up, my product of the decade (no more calls, folks, we have a winner): Wunderbrow. 

Wunderbrow Review Blonde


As seen in a thousand viral videos (conservative estimate), I'd heard of this product early last year but didn't go near it for a few reasons; 1) No one believes those videos, they're mugging people off, right? 2) Does it use weird fibres like those mascaras I see people using on YouTube? Not going near that either as I'm far too sensitive for weird shit near my eyes, and 3) What's wrong with my eyebrows anyway? 

Okay, my eyebrows. The concise version is that I plucked the hell out them in 2005/6 as many women did and mine took a LONG time to recover. Like 8 years. Let me be the cautionary eyebrow tale, kids, for when the skinny brow trend inevitably comes around again. Pluck away but be warned: they might not grow back. Mine did, thankfully, they're a bit sparse and I get them threaded once every couple of months to keep them in tidy shape but that's it. 

I'm too lazy to pencil my brows in (and I've forever got my head in my hands, so I would just rub them off), the overdrawn/ overpainted look really doesn't do it for me (personal preference), so my options for making my brows look a bit more *there* when in full eye make up were limited.

Then, Alex, my trusted make-up YouTube guru tried Wunderbrow and it looked great. If it's good enough for her, it's good enough for me. £15 to eBay later and it arrived. 

I bought the blonde shade (coz blonde) and it's a little darker than you'd think. It's certainly not suitable for those with brown hair as it is on the light side, but blonde eyebrows are hard work with anyway (as they colour change with the seasons like the hair does) so you have to go heavy some days and light others. This blonde shade seems to cater to that and you can layer up for a darker day or an even more defined look. 

Wunderbrow Blonde Review
One on, one off. Making my natural brows look *so shit*

It's magic. I never realised how much a good brow makes such a difference! It's very easy to apply (clear the majority of the product off the brush and use small strokes to build) and it stays put until you take it off. See the photo below? That's New Years Day on very little sleep after taking all my make-up off and the eyebrows stayed put. 

Stay classy, Marshall


A couple of eyeliners for you: 

Urban Decay eyeliner YSL Eyeliner


The Urban Decay Ink For Eyes pen is a liquid eyeliner with a very fine tip. Good for precision lines and outlines for flicks (not filler) but it's not hardy enough for me. If I'm using liquid I want it to stay on for the day and I want it to stay completely black. This one does fade and grey out a little within a few hours. It stays on well, but not as well as I'd like.

In stark contrast, the YSL Waterproof Eye Pencil is a stayer! I'd describe it more as a pure kohl than a pencil and it is super-black. When sharpened to a nice point it can do the most amazing flicks (I have asked people if they think I'm wearing liquid some days when I'm wearing it) and it's great for smudging and blending on more low-key eye days, as it's such a soft product.


Hair

I'm still growing my hair, with very little effort, it's just cracking on with it now. I'm still getting it trimmed every 12-14 weeks (and I usually lose between half and one inch each time) but it's growing well at the moment. Usually the winter period is a very slow period for my hair growth, but this year there's been no stopping it. I occasionally get pangs to cut it all off but they're very rare and I wouldn't have the patience to grow it back again. Anyway, onto some products: 

Blonde Illuminator


The Garnier Blondes is responsible for me staying light blonde this winter. If you're a natural mousey blonde (or dirty blonde, as my hairdresser calls it) then colour can get dull in winter. You can reach for the dye or you can try a natural route. This year I thought I'd give the natural route a try and this shampoo is it. 

Beachmate conditioner is a residual summer product, given the name and it's designed to condition your hair after you've abused it at the beach. It feels exactly the same as the Miracle Moist conditioner, it smells different (more summer-ish?) but I think it's the same product underneath it all. No complaints as Aussie conditioners are in my top 5 beauty products. 

These two came as a freebie from my friends over at NoScrunchie

OGX Argan oil & Shea Butter


I use OGX conditioners frequently (I love the Coconut Water one) and as much as these are not neccessarily designed for my hair type, they make it feel amazing. The shampoo makes my hair soft and the coniditoner is so rich that I only need a teeny amount on the ends of my hair. Plus, as with all OGX products, they smell amazing. 

That's it for this time, folks. I doubt I'll get enough products together for another beauty post until much later in the year, but if I try anything new I'll be sure to let you know. 
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