September Favourites 2016

Beauty

Two Faced Candlelight Glow Highlighter

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I bought this highlighter back in June but haven’t used it until the end of September. BUT, it is so beautiful that I had to feature this on my September favourites even though I’ve been loving it for a few days! This highlighter is absolutely stunning and gives the cheeks such a beautiful brightened glow. I don’t know why I haven’t used it sooner! Two Faced products are all so beautifully packaged and I am just in love with the pink theme. It just looks so girly and elegant. When you open it, it has two different colours, a white and a subtle pink. Mix this both with the Real Techniques highlighting brush, and you get such a lovely glow. It is £25 but worth the price (for me anyway as highlighters last a very long time for me!)

TV

Stage School

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I wanted to see what this show was about as it looked quite good from the trailer. I watched the first episode and I found it so cringeworthy! It is based around students at D&B performing arts school in Bromley about all the going-ons inside the school, such as girl drama, boy drama and everyone competing to audition to get a role in a certain part in a music band, a play or dance.  The thing is, it is so bad but so good that I am hooked! I have been watching all the episodes so far. It airs weekdays on E4 at 19:30. The most ironic thing about it is that even though it is a reality show, it seems very much set up and the majority of the students cannot act or sing. In the middle and at the very end of each episode, one student breaks into a song, singing a current chart hit, performing in a music video. It’s so cringe and that’s the only word I can use to describe it – but for some reason, I just cannot stop watching it!

Fashion

Cat Ear Headbands

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I have been loving wearing cat ear headbands this month. They are so cute and goes perfectly with my style!

Politics

US Presidential Election Debate

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US politics is rare for me to talk about but this election has got everyone interested because of one man – Donald Trump. I watched the debate versus Trump and Clinton and I found it very much amusing. Hilary seemed to keep her cool by laughing at whatever Trump said. I really loved the part when Hilary talked about Trump avoiding tax in his past and he replied by saying “At least I was smart about it.” It just made me laugh! I know what the world thinks about trump but you’ve got to give him credit for how much he has changed politics and has something else to offer. Half of the American people are gravitating towards him so he must be offering something that no other US presidents have. I think he actually has a chance to win. Today, especially in Britain, we have seen a dramatic change in politics within the last few months, so there is every chance Trump could be president. What other past presidential candidates caused as much debate as Trump has? It is certainly an exciting time but definitely a scary prospect. Covering the US election at work is also very interesting and I am learning a lot.

Labour Leadership

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Now, politics over here is hardly uneventful these days. This month, we found out who has won the Labour leadership contest (for the second time) at their conference in Liverpool. It was Jeremy Corbyn v Owen Smith – and of course, with a massive majority, Corbyn has won it again, with even more votes than last year. Again, it is an exciting time, especially to be working in politics, because things have dramatically changed. With more than half of his MPs seem to disagree with him on a lot of things, who knows what is next for the party. Will they “unite” as they all keep saying or will the squabbles continue?

Music

The Weeknd Ft. Daft Punk – Starboy

I have never been into The Weeknd, but I came across this song at the gym on Spotify and fell in love with it. Definitely a song to blast out in the car. Love it.

Spring Favourites 2014!

Well, it has been a while! I have been rather busy with university and final exams and deadlines but now university is over (university experience blog post coming soon) I thought I should ease my way into blogging by doing a Spring favourites as it is nearly Summer!

These are the things that I have been loving this Spring.

Skincare 

Manuka Doctor Products – My skin has been rather amazing recently and I do think it is to do with this new brand I have discovered. I needed some natural products because I have sensitive skin and came across Manuka Doctor in Holland & Barrett. I decided to buy all the apiclear range – the face cleanser, moisturiser and blemish cream (on a whim) and I have been using them for about three months now and I love it so much. They are expensive but they are so good. Ever since I have been using them, my skin has been amazing and I have had no breakouts. Amazing. This has replaced my homemade face masks that I used to make with Manuka honey. It is made with natural ingredients so amazing for acne-prone skin. I am on my third purchase of all the products and I will continue to buy them as long as it does its job! You can also find them in Superdrug.

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Beauty 

Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Foundation – I have changed up my foundation and found this amazing one. I will always love my Estee Lauder Double Wear but the Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions foundation has been a winner for me this Spring. It gives great coverage (I may do a review on this) and feels very light on my skin. Photo-friendly too.

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Tanya Burr Lips & Nails – I love Tanya Burr and have been watching her on YouTube for years. She has brought out a lip gloss and a nail polish range and I decided to buy some. I gravitate towards red lip and nail colours so I bought the red nail polish in ‘Riding Hood’ and the red lip gloss in ‘Heart Skipped a Beat’. I love the lip gloss and wear it everyday now. I love the colour of the nail polish and how it looks on my nails however, it chips very easily and by about two to three days, half of the colour is gone. So that was quite disappointing but I have been loving the lip gloss and may buy some more of the lip-glosses.

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Music

Damon Albarn – Everyday Robots – Damon has finally gone solo anda few weeks ago he released he debut solo album called ‘Everyday Robots’. It is absolutely beautiful. My favourite songs from the album are ‘Hostiles’, ‘The Selfish Giant’ and ‘My Tembo’. 

Lily Allen – Sheezus – Another new album. I have been really loving Lily’s comeback album called ‘Sheezus’. It is really catchy, very funny and quite cool too. I love the songs ‘Insincerely Yours’ and ‘Take My Place’. 

Waiting Times In Eating Disorder Treatment

I wrote a post about this a few months ago but as a media volunteer for Beat, I took part in their waiting times survey about my experiences and today it has been revealed that a large amount of people have waited for treatment for more than six months. The charity are now calling  on the government to do more to help people with eating disorders.

Susan Ringwood, the chief executive of Beat says “Eating disorders are fatal in up to 20% of cases. That’s the highest death rate of any mental illness. We know that when people have to wait a long time for treatment, their illness can get worse. In the most serious cases, people’s lives can be lost. We were shocked to find that 26% of the people we spoke to had waited more than six months. We want clear waiting times to be set, so people can know when their treatment is going to start.”

Waiting lists for any treatment does really get to me because it is as if they want the sufferer to get more ill. I understand why there are waiting lists but for eating disorder treatment, it can be even more difficult for the sufferer and their family and for some, the waiting list is around 8 months to a year and by then, the sufferer may get severely ill.

After being discharged from one unit, I had to wait a year to get assessed for another one and I was not getting any better whilst waiting. In fact, I got severely worse to the point where I just wanted to die and could not even function anymore. Even drinking water seemed like a scary concept. When you do eventually get help after waiting for a long time, you just feel like you are past help, which explains why it is so hard to get better. The longer you leave a patient waiting, the harder it is to get better. All the sufferer wants is help whether they admit it or not.

Care minister Norman Lamb says this has to be a “very urgent priority”. He says “In mental health, we don’t even know how long people are waiting, That’s why this survey is of great value, because it demonstrates the seriousness of the problem. I want to get to a point where, by 2015, we introduce access standards, so that people know how long they should be expected to wait as a maximum” but he admits that he does not know whether he will achieve that yet but will try.

Another thing I would like to point out is that eating disorders are mental illnesses but some specialist units focus merely on monitoring the weight, behaviours and the intake and of course that is the main issue that does need to be dealt with first but some units, not all, do not provide proper psychological help straight away. They just give you a few antidepressants and that is it. I feel like if I get my head sorted out first, then perhaps I would do better in terms of recovery. But, of course they put you on a waiting list and more waiting lists and more waiting lists. I do not understand how I can get better if proper therapy is not put in place. Eating means nothing if you are not mentally better.

I think treatment should be offered at the first sign of an eating disorder. As soon as a patient shows signs of an eating disorder, they should put in place a therapist, a dietitian, a psychiatrist, a nurse – everything they will need in order for the patient to get better. When you have eating disorder, all you need is the right support and sometimes I feel like I am not getting that which does hinder my chances of recovery.

Conservative Party Conference 2013: Cameron “We are the party of the future”

Ending the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester today was David Cameron’s quite optimistic speech as he claimed that the Conservatives “are the party of the future”.

He asked voters to release him from the Coalition in order to “finish the job” and of course, using the quite overused Tory phrase, he did say he wants to “clean up the mess that Labour left” but not just clean the mess and be done with it. He said he did not come into politics to fix what went wrong but to build something right.

He said his ambition was to make Britain “a land of opportunity for all” because of course they are the party for “hardworking people”. The speech was focused mainly on the economy and welfare. He said his ambition is to cut taxes. “We’re Tories. We believe in low taxes. And believe me – we will keep on cutting the taxes of hard-working people.”

He pledged that anyone under 25 is not going to be able to claim housing or unemployment benefits under an all-Conservative government. Instead, he said young people should be forced to “earn or learn”.

He said the economy was finally “turning the corner” after the recession however, he did admit the job was not over and the Conservatives want to move on from “clearing up the mess” Labour have left to “build something better in its place”. He said he wanted his party to be given the chance to “finish the job we’ve started”.

He touched on a number of issues other issues including Scottish Referendum, the NHS, HS2 and Education. Referring to young people, he said if they fail English and Maths GCSE, they will need to do it all again and again and again until they pass because “there’s not a job in the world where you don’t need to spell and add up properly.”

This speech was a round up of what we have heard within the past few days from the conference. There were no new policies. The speech was about their mission and what Cameron hopes to bring in the future. It was not the best speech he has given and probably won’t be what people are going to talk about in the next few days as much as they did about Ed Miliband’s speech last week because Ed basically overshadowed the whole conference.

However, Cameron reminded people about what Conservatives are all about in this speech; that they are the party for “hardworking people” who want to get on but also made it clear that the economic recovery is happening but is taking time and for people to hang in there and trust them.

Conservative Party Conference 2013: Osborne “We have a serious plan for a grown-up country”

At his speech today in the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester, Chancellor George Osborne set out what he called a “serious plan for a grown-up country”.

Sporting a new haircut and speaking in a rather mature and serious tone, he said Britain’s economy was turning a corner, but admitted that cutting the deficit was a big concern. He said the “battle to turn Britain around, is not even close to being over. We are going to finish what we have started.”

He said his aim was to achieve a financial ‘surplus’ in the next parliament and to grow capital spending in line with GDP.

The big plan was of course his help to work scheme – which will put the long-term unemployed into work before they receive any benefits. No work, no benefits. He said: “No one will be ignored or left without help but no one will get something for nothing” which of course is a typical Conservative aim unlike Labour.

“Help to work – and in return work for the dole. Because a fair welfare system is fair to those who need it and fair to those who pay for it too” he told conference.

A political speech would not be complete or even normal without a few jokes and some digs at other parties. Making the conference laugh, he took a swipe at both the Liberal Democrats and Labour, including the Miliband brothers. He described Ed and David as “the greatest sibling rivalry since the Bible. Cain and not-very-able.”

He hit back at Labour’s plan to tackle the “cost of living” crisis. He said: “What matters most for living standards are jobs and low mortgage rates and lower taxes.” He then added: “without a credible economic plan, you simply don’t have a living standards plan.”

He said that the Conservatives had done more than any other party for small business owners and added: “We are nothing, if we are not the party for small business.”

His speech was rather positive although it was not as enthusiastic as Ed Balls’ speech at the Labour Conference last week. Osborne was thinking to the future instead of wallowing in past mistakes. He still has a lot to prove and still has a long way to go to win over the public to his policies. He and David Cameron hope to, as the Tories always say, “clean up the mess” that Labour have left. Sticking to the same tune like they always do. Is Osborne out of touch or is the mess that Labour left actually the problem of this economic slowdown?

The ‘mental patient’ costumes is the reason why people are scared to talk about mental illness

Today’s big news is the one about Asda selling ‘mental patient’ fancy dress costume for Halloween. Tesco and Amazon have been too, which is now taken off sale following public criticism.

This is absolutely disgraceful. This is exactly why people are ashamed to talk about mental health because it does not have a decent connotation attached to it. It is seen as a horrible thing, a shameful thing, which can explain why people are still adamant to talk about it.

When people think about the mentally ill, they think ‘crazy’ ‘messed up’ ‘loony’ ‘psycho’. They are often seen as violent. Why? The mentally ill can be victims of violence. People judge without knowing the reasons. I have met a lot of people in mental health units and not one seemed ‘crazy’ to me. In fact, they were the most understanding and warm people I have ever met. That was probably due to the fact that I could relate to them but that is besides the point.

You could be walking down the street passing someone who suffers from depression but they could look absolutely normal. People who have mental health issues are not crazy and people really need to understand that.

Yes, we often hear the word ‘stigma’ and you are probably sick of it but it is true. There is still a stigma attached to mental health and unfortunately I think that stigma will not go away anytime soon because of the likes of Asda, Tesco and Amazon.

People are slowly starting to understand it a bit more which is great but there needs to be more done about this stigma. It took me a while to be open about my problems and one of the reasons why I am slowly opening up my mental health problems is because I want to help break that stigma and also help and inspire people along the way. I was ashamed before because I thought people would judge me but after speaking to others and mental health specialists about it, they have made me realise that there is nothing to be ashamed of.

People who suffer from mental health problems are often weary about what people will think. I wrote an article for Time To Change about talking about mental health in the Islamic community, which will be published very soon. This is because it is something I am facing currently. In my culture, the mentally ill is often seen as someone who is not worthy of anything. They are seen as an insignificant, crazy and scary person, which is also the case in the wider society.

Hiding my problems has not helped me with getting better. In fact, when you hide your problems, it gets worse. I want to see a change in the way we talk about mental health. The attitude to it completely disgusts me. I will not say I faced any discrimination at work or at a place of study but I know people who have and this needs to change.

Labour leader Ed Miliband raised this issue in his party conference speech earlier this week and MP’s do occasionally come out about their own mental health problems, which is very admiring and allows others to be open about their problems too. I really think if this issue is often raised in Parliament, more people will start to talk about it.

We must accept the fact that mental health is something that is normal and should not to be hidden or kept secret, just because society thinks it should be. Asda may describe the stereotype of mental illness but know that mental illness is far from that.

Labour Party Conference 2013: Miliband “We’re Britain…we’re better than this.”

One Nation Labour was created by Ed Miliband exactly a year ago. Today, he brought it back.

At his speech at the Labour Party conference in Brighton today, his main slogan was “Britain can do better than this….we are better this.” The way he tried to show that Labour can do better than this if they win the next general election is by pledging quite unique policies, such as freezing gas and electricity prices until the start of 2017. He said energy firms had been overcharging for too long and it was time to reset the market. “Your bills will be frozen, benefiting millions of families and millions of businesses. That’s what I mean by a government that fights for you. That’s what I mean when I say Britain can do better than this.”

This speech seemed to be something that Miliband wanted to stick to people’s minds. He wanted people to remember why he is the leader of the Labour Party and why Labour should be back in government. The way he did that was again, starting a slogan, a catchphrase, that he kept on repeating throughout the speech in hopes that people will listen. Once again, he had no script. Memorising his whole speech like last year, he spoke with enthusiasm and passion.

“Race to the top” was a phrase that he repeated many times after saying how the Tories are always failing and going down instead of up. He said “We’ve never believed in the race to the bottom. We believe in the race to the top.”

He stuck to what he believes about not going to war, referring to the chemical weapons debate in Syria.

After admitting that he was never someone who is “macho” on The Andrew Marr Show on Sunday, he did take quite a U-turn and almost tried to be macho at this speech. He said “Here’s the thing about David Cameron: He may be strong when it comes to the weak. But he’s always weak when it comes to the strong.” Claiming that Labour can do a better job than the Tories. he had a message for them.  He said “If they want to have a debate about leadership and character, be my guest.”

He quite rightly pointed out all the things that Cameron has done wrong in this Coalition. He told the conference that Cameron sided with the Murdoch’s, tobacco lobbyists and millionaires. He said Cameron introduced the bedroom tax but Labour will repeal.

He also talked about mental health stigma and why we should be able to talk about it openly. “It’s an afterthought in our health system,” he told the conference audience.  This is not a policy as such but he is absolutely right. Mental health issues is never talked about as often as it should be. It is something that matters. After receiving a letter from a 17 year old who suffers from anxiety and depression, he said we should be able to talk about this stuff as it does happen.

On the subject of health, he then went onto talk about the NHS.  “It is the same old story: We rescue the NHS. The Tories wreck it. We have to rescue it all over again. And we will.”

This speech was full of policies after polices. Like last year, he pledged to do many things, but the question is always this – Will he be able to deliver? Is this all talk to win voters or is Ed Miliband the future prime minister we all dream of?