Acne 101 – Products that really work

Acne 101 – Products that really work

There are a hell of a lot of products out there claiming to zap your zits, and a lot of them are quite pricy. I suffered from acne for a couple of years – don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t severe or anything and I’ve seen a hell of a lot worse, but over the years I tried so many products. A lot of the products I tried made no difference, but some really did. So I’m going to share with you what worked for me, so you can skip straight to trying the good ones.

Before I get into this, I want to be clear that in the end I had to go on antibiotics to clear up my acne, so none of these products completely zapped the whole lot like that. In truth though, that isn’t going to happen – acne is an infection and needs antibiotics (either topical or in the form of tablets) to truly get rid of it. However, I found some really great products along the way that helped heal spots quicker, helped with the dry sore skin that comes with acne, and really helped me to avoid any scarring. It’s now three years since I started my antibiotics for my acne and for the last year my skin has been fantastic – I probably get 1/2 spots a week now, and there’s not a single scar from the acne.

The first product, which I cannot recommend enough, is aloe vera gel. I tend to use the brand Fruit of the Earth or Banana Boat. It is honestly a miracle worker. It’s such a natural healer and can be used for a huge variety of skin problems. My dad suffered from scoliosis on his leg for about 40 years, but after a few weeks of applying this cream it healed up and completely disappeared. I really think the aloe vera made a massive difference to my skin, it was moisturising and at the same helped my skin to heal really quickly. It’s so cheap and can be found in most pharmacists or failing that, on Amazon. It doesn’t make your face look shiny and feel horrible like most products, and I actually used it as a primer under my make-up for years as it really tightens your skin. It’s so worth trying and I swear by the stuff! (Just don’t get it anywhere near your eyes because damn that stuff stings)

Next up would have to be Palmer’s cocoa butter oil. This stuff is great for scars – I recently had some really bad bites on my leg and this has really really helped to fade the scars. I also think it worked really well on my spots. Acne is known for leaving garish scars behind, the bigger the spot usually the deeper the mark – so this was something I was really worried about.

What’s the point in clearing it all up if afterwards I’m still going to be covered in marks? When the antibiotics kicked in and my spots started disappearing I did still have lots of red dots where they’d been for a few months – but when I started using this oil they quickly started to fade and now I’m scar-free. It’s an oil, so obviously its quite greasy. At first I used it day and night, i used to put it on under my make-up – which wasn’t a good look but it was important to wear it as often as possible while I had a chance to reverse the damage. After a while though, I just wore it at night, and now I don’t need it at all! Again, this stuff is available at most pharmacists and isn’t expensive at all.

I couldn’t not sing the praises of good old Sudocrem. My Mom has been an avid Sudocrem user for as long as I can remember – I’d fall over in the playground and I’d have sudocrem straight on that graze, I got sunburn, a rash, a bite.. always Sudocrem. It didn’t fail me when it came to spots either. I’d pop a bit on each spot before I went to bed at night and it would always be half the size and half as red the next morning. However, I will warn, don’t just slather it over your entire face because that will 100% dry your skin out. Even when I was pore spot than clear skin, I’d sit and dot each individual spot – a bit time consuming but by far worth the work.

Boots also do an amazing range of witch hazel and tea tree products that are kind of drying, but in moderation really do the trick. I also found that their back spray is fantastic for spots on your back and chest – I still use it when I get occasional flare ups on my chest and it zaps the lot in a few days so I would 150% recommend that stuff. It’s really cheap too!

Lastly, if you want a hardcore moisturiser that won’t double your spots, Nivea is the way to go. Their everyday oil-free moisturiser isn’t too greasy and won’t make your skin worse at all. You can also get aloe vera moisturisers – like the gel but extra moisturising. Tesco do their own aloe vera moisturiser with a minimum added extras and it’s really great for your skin. I used to slather layer after layer of these two moisturisers on when my skin was super dry, and they always made a huge difference within 24 hours.

I thought I’d also mention some home remedies that I thought made a difference. I tried just about everything from rubbing potatoes on my skin to slathering it in honey – I hope that’s given you a good image of me. There were two things though that I thought really helped, salt water and avocado. I found that Avocado mixed with just a tiny bit of antibacterial honey and milk was a good moisturising face pack. Salt water was also good for healing my skin – just don’t over too it, once a week is plenty, you don’t want to dry it out.

Don’t get caught up my brands with lots of celebs shouting their name – they’ve been paid to love them. I tried lots of popular brands like freederm and Proactiv, but in the end found that the best products were the more natural and less heard of ones.

I really hope this helps anyone out their suffering from acne and you can skip straight to using the products that actually are worth buying. If you know of any great products for spots, let me and other readers know in the comments! Thanks for reading – feel free to check out my previous post ‘LaLaLab – polaroids to your door‘ and use my £5 discount code! Or you can find me over on my Twitter and Instagram!

LaLaLab – polaroids from your phone to your door

LaLaLab – polaroids from your phone to your door

I was recently lucky enough to get sent a bunch of gorgeous prints from LaLaLab, and I’m in love! LaLaLab is such an easy and fab idea – you can download their app on to your phone and upload your pictures straight from your camera roll to the app and get them posted to you! They do so many different types of prints, from your average 10x13cm sized prints, to huge 20x20cm prints and cute little polaroids.

I’m personally a big polaroid lover and at just 33 pence per polaroid, you can go all out and order loads. You can get really creative with polaroids and do all sorts with them. I like to put mine on display, I put a bunch on my memory board (click here to read my blog post on how I made my DIY marble memory board) and I clipped some to some fairy lights over my bed. You could also get scrap booking if you fancy a new hobby and something cute to look back on.

It’s so easy to use, takes two minutes and is really inexpensive. Why spend the money on a polaroid camera when you can just use your phone?

Even better, I have a discount code for you so that you can get your polaroids for even cheaper! If you enter the code ‘PGS943SK’ when you sign up, you can get £5 off your first order. You can’t really say no to that?

In addition to prints, LaLaLab also sells photo books, canvases, magnets, postcards, phone cases and frames for your pictures. Go check out their website here or download their app to your phone to start printing your pics!

Let me know in the comments what you like to do with your pics; do you scrap book them or put them up on the wall? Or are you more of a send-a-picture-in-a-card kind of person? Let me know! If you get yourself some, be sure to share them on Instagram and Twitter tagging @emmachxrlotte_ and @lalalab_app!

Thank you so much for reading! If you enjoyed this blog post, why not check out my previous post ‘favourite five shoes’? Alternatively, you can go stalk my Twitter and Instagram. Look out for a post tomorrow about my latest foundation adventure – this one is a good one!

Favourite five shoes!

Favourite five shoes!

I love doing this ‘favourite five’ posts, and they always seem to go down fairly well, so today I thought I’d do a ‘favourite five shoes’ post. I’m definitely more of a shoes kind of girl than a bag girl, in fact I’ve been using the same bag for two years now but I buy new shoes every week. It’s fair to say I’ve built up a pretty solid collection of shoes, so here is my current favourite five!

mules shoes

At the top right now would have to be my black suede-look mules. Not very summer-y I know, and in fact not so long ago I thought mules looked ridiculous, but now I’m obsessed. I actually got these from Primark for just £10 – which they totally don’t look. Although they don’t look all that summer-y, they’re nice to wear when it’s warm as they let your feet breathe a little. They’re perfect for wearing to work as the heel is only a couple of inches, so they aren’t uncomfortable at all.

Old Skool vans shoes

Next up would have to be my Old Skool black and white vans. I’ve mentioned these before in a previous favourites post and I’m still absolutely obsessed. They’re just the comfiest to wear and I don’t even know, I just love them. I got them from Schuh for £55, and although they’re not cheap, I think they’re 100% worth the money.

ASOS shoes

 

Also in my favourite five, are these beauties. Again, I mentioned these in a previous favourites and they are still firm favourites. I got these from ASOS for just £25 and they’re just so pretty and again are fab for wearing to work or going out.

converse shoes

I couldn’t write about my favourite shoes and not include a pair of Converse, right? My all black (are you seeing a re-occurring theme here with the colour???) hi-top converse. I bloody love these, these have been my go-to shoes for years. Converse are always such good quality for money and are comfy and sturdy. I can’t remember for the life of me where I got mine back in 2013 but you know where you can get Converse anyway.

loafer shoes

Lastly, another black pair of shoes, my new loafers. These are suede-looking again and were just £25 from Boohoo. I have tried so many loafers over the past few months but couldn’t find any that weren’t really stiff and wouldn’t rub on my feet, but I finally tried these. They are still a little on the stiff side I admit – I spent a day walking around the NEC and did get blisters, however, they were by far a hell of a lot better than all the others I tried.

So those are my favourite five pairs of shoes and as you can probably tell, I’m really colourful and love to experiment with the colour of my shoes.

What is your favourite pair of shoes at the moment? Or even better, what is your favourite black pair of shoes? Let me know in the comments, I can always be persuaded to buy more shoes so give me some to go buy!

Thank you so much for reading! If you enjoyed this post, why not check out my previous post ‘To Be Read – June‘ or even go stalk my Twitter or Instagram! Make sure you pop your email in the subscribe box to the right so you get a notification when my next post goes up. I’m going to be putting up a post tomorrow all about LaLaLab and their fab prints!

 

Blogging tips: Boosting your Domain Authority

Blogging tips: Boosting your Domain Authority

I’m relatively new to all of this super-tech behind the scenes blogging malarkey and have been working hard to understand everything and put it in to practice to improve my blog. Recently, I’ve been focusing on domain authority and specifically, boosting my domain authority.

In short, if you don’t know what domain authority is it’s a score that every domain has from 1 to 100 that was developed by MOZ. Basically the higher your domain authority is, the better your web traffic is and higher your search engine ranking. Ultimately, this makes your site more appealing to brands and PR companies etc as essentially you have more authority. Pretty simple really, it is literally your domain’s authority.

So how do you get your domain authority to 100 and have Apple begging to work with you? Well that is the more difficult part. It’s very difficult to get your domain up to 100 -Sites like Google and Amazon have a domain authority of 100. If you want to check your current domain authority, you can check it out by entering your web address here.

There’s no way to suddenly bump your domain authority from one to fifty, it’s something you have to be persistent and patient about. Therefore, I’ve put together a list of five ways to boost your DA below.

Five ways to boost your DA

  1. Link to reliable and authoritative websites in your posts.
  2. Get other sites to link to your website. When you collaborate with a company, ask them to post links to your site on their site.
  3. Improve your internal links. Link your posts back to your other posts. When you put up a post include links to similar posts on your site, especially older posts that aren’t seen as much anymore – that’ll improve your domain authority and views.
  4. Get your content shared on social media. If your content has lots of likes, shares and comments then surely it is better content and deserves a better DA.
  5. Make sure you know the difference between follow and no-follow links. This can be pretty complicated and I only understand it because I read a really really great blog post by Maria J, you can check out the post and her blog here – trust me, it is really helpful. Basically though, not changing your links to no-follow when they should be can get you in serious trouble with Google and affect your DA.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m no expert, I’m just getting started with all this DA and SEO stuff myself, but I thought if I could simplify the best bits for you guys then it’d help you all out.

Of course, getting a good DA score and getting contacted by companies isn’t the whole point of blogging, and if it is what you’re setting out to do then you’re probably doing it for all the wrong reasons. However, it is an added bonus that can help your hobby become a bit more rewarding – just don’t get too hung up on the numbers.

I really hope this has helped some of you out, please feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions – not that I’m sure I’ll be able to answer them all, but I’ll try. Failing that, get yourself a notepad and get on google!

Thanks for reading, if you’d like to follow any of my social media accounts you can find my links here. Or, if you fancy it, you can check out my May Favourites! (See, it is as simple as that to create links back to your own site, easy right?)

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May favourites

May favourites

This month I’ve been loving a lot of things so it’s been really difficult to narrow it down. First up would definitely have to be Sainsbury’s new marble/rose gold stationery range. If you follow my Instagram you may have seen my story where I was going on about wanting to buy every single thing – and this was no word of a lie. They had so so many pretty notebooks and we all know I am a major notebook hauder. However, I managed to limit myself to just three items (although I will definitely be going back for more after pay day) and I picked up this marble design ‘Things to do’ clipboard, these glittery tapes and this rose gold pen pot which I am using to hold my growing collection of beauty blenders!

stationery flatlay

I’ve also really been loving bralettes this month. As the weather has finally got its shit together in England and got warm, I’ve been loving wearing bralettes as they are so comfy. I bought the white one from Tesco this week and I’m just obsessed! These are my favourite three right now, from the plain black is from Topshop and the rose embroidered one is from Primark. You can find my Primark bralette and lots of other purchases from Primar, New Look, H&M etc, in my Huge Holiday Haul post!

Facetune

I’ve also been enjoying reading Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire. I’m only about a third of the way through, but so far I’m enjoying it. I started this book about this time two years ago but so hooked on I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson that I never ended up finishing it. The book is your typical good girl meets bad boy kind of book, but I’m a sucker for that kind of thing in the summer. The book is often compared to the likes of Twilight and Fifty Shades, so if you enjoyed any of those you’ll probably enjoy Beautiful Disaster.

jmc_beautifuldisaster_cover-e1333664180331

I decided last week to invest in a selfie ring light. I originally bought the light to use for blog posts, as my bedroom is north facing and so doesn’t get a lot of sun light, taking blog pictures isn’t always easy. Therefore, I thought the light would just brighten up flat lays that little bit – and it does. You may have seen me raving about the light on my Instagram story, because I was just so impressed with how bright and useful the tiny thing is. It was just £5 on Amazon, which I think is great! It also definitely makes a big difference to selfies. So often I go to take picture of a make-up look for Instagram or a blog post and it never looks half decent, but the light really works its magic – I’d definitely recommend.

I finally managed to find a pair of loafers I like on Boohoo a couple of weeks ago, and for the last half of May they are pretty much all I’ve worn. I managed to grab them in a sale for just £15 and although I’ll admit they definitely aren’t the shoes you want to go for a hike in (I spent the day walking around the NEC in Birmingham in them and came back with some lovely blisters) they’re ideal for just going to work in or going out for a meal in. You can find them here if you fancy a look.

Finally, while the weather has been nice the past couple of weeks, I’ve been living in my NYX soft matte lip cream in the shade Athens. It’s a really summery-pinky shade and although it isn’t what I usually go for, I’m loving it.

What have you been loving this May? Let me know in the comments below!

I’m just going to add in a bit of shameless self-promo here – if you haven’t already, go check out my Instagram here and give it a follow if you fancy it as I’m so close to hitting 2k! Thank youuuu! If you’re interested in any of my other social media links you can find them here.

Thanks for reading! Why not check out my last post- Favourite Five Lipsticks?

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