Going for the mummy chop at RUSH Hair Shepherds Bush

Ok so I’m not going to admit how long it’s been since I had a haircut, but let’s just say it’s been a very looooong while. My hair, as you may have guessed, is very fine and tends to get tangled up with minimal effort. Since having Alice, my hair has been low down on my priority list as I just tie it up every day, but enough is enough. I just couldn’t keep on living in a hair disaster movie. It was too long, way too uneven in colour and so going for the mummy chop at RUSH Hair Shepherds Bush was the plan.

We took a before shot from the back and you can see what I mean. Outgrown roots that could pass for ombré when styled and curled, but left untamed and boring was what we were dealing with. I told my stylist at RUSH Hair Shepherds Bush exactly what I was after, at least 4-5 inches off and a clean cut and refresh.

I just love every RUSH salon I go to, the lighting is always on point so you don’t look into the mirror and scream when you see yourself. Magazines, drinks and anything you need on hand for a relaxing and stress free appointment.

This is how much hair we took off in the end- savage but I felt so good as soon as it was done. Sort of like makeover week on America’s Next Top Model!

I chose a Kerastase treatment as well, the green vile for reconstruction, and it worked a treat.

Here are my after shots- so much better right?! Alice won’t be able to get her hands on my shorter locks so easily, but the length is still long enough to tie back if needed, just not every day moving forward!!

If you’re looking to get a new look done, I have a special offer for you if you visit the Shepherds Bush Salon – 50% off for all new clients! You’re welcome, and thanks for reading…

Saharasplash x

In collaboration with RUSH Hair and Beauty

Going for the mummy chop at RUSH Hair Shepherds Bush left you wanting more? Next up is some motivation as I head to my first gym since giving birth! 

Getting fit on demand with ESquared

I don’t know about you but I find it extremely hard to commit to a gym. It’s not just the motivation, but also the fact that I am never in one place long enough to ‘get my gym on’ on a regular basis. I’ve failed miserably at subscribing to several gyms when I was at uni and also when I moved to London, so a new found app called Esquared has got the solution to help a girl just like me.

The Esquared app lets you get fit on demand, no strings or memberships attached. It’s as simple as click and go whenever you want, even if for just one class or session. There is no monthly fee, just a one off cost to enjoy a gym/fitness/yoga sesh near you, and trust me it’s amazing.

The app works around Greater London to help you book onto a class or gym floor with minutes to spare, I booked mine 15 minutes before arriving at the Quad Health Club and Spa inside the Crowne Plaza Hotel. You can also book in advance too, but the idea of the Esquared app is fitness on demand, and that’s usually for the fast-paced lifestyle!

Paul and Alice set up in the hotel bar and enjoyed coffee and crackers while I went off to work out. I say work out lightly, as my body is still quite fragile and I wanted to work myself slowly into some cardio. I started off stretching on the gym ball- something I’m very familiar with since becoming pregnant.

I then decided to head over to the cross trainers to do a simple 15 minutes mixed with high and low intensity. It seemed so much longer than I remembered it, but with TV screens and a beautiful window looking out onto the docks, I managed it. I burned about 85 calories which was a lot more than my body has been used to burning, so I felt happy with my little triumph.

I went back onto the floor to continue with some ab and core training, I had picked up a lot of my moves from previous Pilates and Pole Fitness classes back when I was living in London full time.

Sufficiently sweaty, it was time to change and get ready for a more relaxing scene…

I was so excited to find a gym, health club and spa with the Esquared app that I never would have discovered before. This one is located near Royal Victoria, so really easy to get to from where we are, even though we live outside of London.

Getting fit on demand with Esquared is the way forward for me along with home exercise. Would this app suit your lifestyle? Find out more on www.esq2.com and download the app for Apple here and Google Play here.

Get 15% off when you use my unique code SAHARA15

Saharasplash x

This is a sponsored post 

For even more London adventures, find out what happened when I went to The Berkeley Hotel for a gluten free afternoon tea!

Baby massage class with Spa Experience

At just 24 days old, Alice took her first journey into the city. My sister Evie came along with us to help out during the day. We were headed towards Kensington at 10am (after a quick stop to get some hash browns) for a very exciting blogger event. Alice had been invited to experience a baby massage class at Kensington Leisure Centre hosted by Spa Experience.

I was a little nervous about taking her out for an entire day after just little outings, but as per usual she was brilliant.

It was also the first time taking out my Fact + Fiction baby bag!

We arrived just in time and the setup was carefully laid out for mummies and babies.

Our Spa Experience instructor Neji talked us through what to expect throughout the class and it was super relaxed and chilled out. We got Alice out of her nappy, thankfully she had just done her business so we were safe!

We used the oil provided to practice massaging the legs which is the easiest part to start with as baby massage beginners. We practiced the ‘Swedish milking technique’ which uses both hands. You go from ankle to thigh with one hand while keeping hold of the ankle with the other. We also used ‘rolling’ on the legs and she loved the ankle circles!

We sang songs to create a lovely atmosphere, and by this time Alice wanted to have a feed and walk around to see the room so we listened in on the last part of the class.

After a boosting smoothie, the mums were treated to mini spa treatments and so I opted for a back neck and shoulder massage.

We also came away with some lovely products and a book all about baby massage. If you are interested in the book, I’ve got the link for you here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Infant-Massage-Handbook-Loving-Parents/dp/0285636170

Thank you so much to Spa Experience for inviting us along to the baby massage class- we had a fabulous time and have been massaging at home ever since!

Saharasplash x

Find out what’s in my Big Fat Christmas Beauty Gift Guide this year!

Joining the sit-stand movement with Fellowes and Viking

It’s quite sad thinking that this event write up may be the last one I do in a while. Bodywise, it’s very difficult to get around to as many London events as I used to, so I am making these last few count until I can get back into things (just before Christmas is the plan). As far as events go, this one was definitely worth the travel and slow walk from the tube station to the venue. I had my sister along for the fun (and just in case my waters broke!) and we met up with Eboni en route which was lovely. So, the post title may be a bit obscure to those reading for the first time. Fellowes and Viking are companies who are involved in the office furniture, supplies and stationery business and decided to put an event together in support of the sit-stand desk. It’s incredible to think that 88% of offices in Sweden and Denmark have implemented the sit-stand desk concept, so I’m here to tell you all about them!

The Lotus Sit-Stand Workstation in white

A bit about the Sit-Stand Desk concept…

We had a quick brief from a Fellowes UK representative (Richard) who gave us a bit of history into the brand. Their first ever product was a bankers box, and over time they have grown with the decades and are now huge in the office supplies world. Richard spoke about ergonomics, which is the study of people’s efficiency in the workplace. The sit-stand workstation hopes to disrupt the ergonomic pattern for a better working environment. Their research reveals how joining the sit-stand movement can have a positive long-term impact on employees’ health, happiness and productivity.

Smooth Lift Counterbalance Technology™ make height adjustment easy to accommodate multiple users and work styles at one work station- just perfect if your office needs a switch around. No more monitor adjustments the hard way!

Photo credit: Elouisa Gergiou

What happened next…

Focusing on workplace health and happiness ideals, we then had a lovely treat in the form of The Pamper Company. I used to work in an office where we had a masseuse come in bi-weekly so I know first hand how this can really make a difference to the working day.

I had a wonderful back, neck and shoulder massage to restore some calm and peace in my day.

Photo credit: Elouisa Gergiou

Photo credit: Elouisa Gergiou

As if it couldn’t get any better…

Afterwards, we were introduced to Mr Flavour, a smoothie and juice company who taught us a little about making delicious cold drinks.

I combined watermelon, kale, almond milk and ice chips to make a healthy, sweet and light green juice.

We came away with a lovely bag including a pure white wrist support which goes perfectly with my blogger’s office desk setup!

Check that out here

So, are you converted? Would you like to see your office joining the sit-stand movement? Let me know in the comments section below!

Saharasplash x

Thanks for reading Joining the Sit-Stand movement with Fellowes and Viking. If you’d like another adventure, here’s one I went on recently with My Little Piccolo and Waitrose! 

Weaning Tips with My Little Piccolo and Waitrose

I have been spending a lot of time counting down to milestones- when the baby reaches full term at 37 weeks (today!) for example and how many days left till my predicted due date. Like I’ve mentioned previously, I want to maintain the lifestyle aspect of my blog from fashion to the family, so this is something I’m really trying to focus on doing. I still want those without children to come to my site to read a post about what Cadbury is bringing out this year for Christmas as well as something like this- Weaning Tips with My Little Piccolo and Waitrose. I hope that my new readers as well as long time supporters can sort of co-exist together in one harmonious bubble of awesomeness. Read on to find out what happened when a bunch of mums (and my pregnant self) took over the Kings Cross Waitrose to explore the shelves…

The amazing brand behind the morning trip is My Little Piccolo. They are an organic baby food brand who have been organising trails up and down the country over the past few months to spread the word about best weaning tips. Together with Alice Fotheringham, an infant nutrition specialist and nutritional chef, they have reached out to all sorts of mums and had a big impact on the groups from the tours. I’m here to share a few things I learned myself which I’d love to pass on to any mums going through weaning, or just as food for thought for the future!

Frozen fruit is not cheating

Alice lead us through Waitrose aisle by aisle where we all had different types of questions. One popular question being about fruit and veg and how to incorporate this into a weaning baby’s diet. Frozen fruit is the perfect way to create a lovely dessert for baby and the family. Seasonal fruits such as strawberries can be bought frozen and blended up or cooked to make a compote, smoothie or crumble base. Stewed apples from frozen can settle a sickly tummy too. It’s absolutely fine to feed fruit from frozen to hungry little ones so don’t feel like you have to buy it all fresh.

Don’t be afraid of strong flavours

This is a really great tip I discovered on the tour. Alice explained to us that you shouldn’t be afraid of introducing stronger flavours such as mature cheddar (suitable from one year) or mustard in mashed potato for example. These strong tastes will help your baby to get used to trying out lots of variety, and apparently many weaning babies are fond of tinned mackerel or sardines too! Using different herbs and spices is also a better way of flavouring food instead of reaching for the salt when preparing meals for your baby.

There’s more to dips than just ketchup

A lot of us will open our fridge doors and be greeted with your standard bottle of ketchup, mayo and potentially a BBQ sauce. On our way round the shelves, we discovered that low and behold- there’s more to dips than just these three! Yogurt dips, pesto, and pea hummus are all perfect alternatives to the red sauce, here’s why:

  • It gets baby used to many different flavours
  • It reduces the sugar intake immediately on the plate (especially if dessert is on the menu too)
  • Colour variation in dips and sauces will help teach your child that green isn’t always related to yucky veggies!

Breakfast can be deceiving

So I’m a really big cereal eater. My go to tends to be the Nestle gluten free honey nut cornflakes day to day in the mornings. For babies and toddlers however, cereal is a sure way of starting the day off with too much sugar. It was also interesting to hear that Weetabix (compared to Waitrose own brand) contains three times the amount of sugar- that’s a big difference. We were advised to simply rule out 3/4 of cereals altogether when weaning and focus on porridge.

A huge thank you has to go out to Alice, the My Little Piccolo team and Waitrose for such a great day, I can’t wait to put it into practice in the New Year!

Meanwhile for mums already on the weaning journey, the My Little Piccolo website has a wealth of exciting recipes to try at home and has info on where you can purchase the products seen above.

Saharasplash x

New to the scene Shop Skincare

New to the scene: Shop Skincare

I am really delighted to announce that I will be working closely with a new website called Shop Skincare. I’m sure you’ve all heard of sites such as Beauty Bay, Look Fantastic and Feel Unique. I myself have used all these to purchase beauty products and have them delivered straight to my front door. So, why is Shop Skincare any different? There’s a very good reason why you should read on, as these guys, although new to the scene, know exactly how to treat us beauty obsessed! Shop Skincare offer a unique service where if you spend £40 or more on their site, they will send you a gorgeous goody box filled with surprises! Not as a one off, not as a subscription service and not just your average gift box. This is how you are rewarded just by purchasing your usual beauty buys:

Akin
Cleansing Micellar Water

Akin are an Australian made and owned brand with some lovely cruelty free products. In my surprise box I received a cleansing micellar water with organic coconut water and green tea extract. It smells wonderful and it’s the perfect addition to a night time routine with hints of lavender to wind down the day.

Natura Siberica
Snow Cladonia Day Cream sample & Hand Cream

This hand cream is super luxurious and smells divine. The cranberry seed oil will have you sniffing the back of your hand for ages after use. If you’re into products using a combination of herbs and flowers then the Snow Cladonia Day Cream is one to try. It’s super absorbent and leaves the skin nicely moisturised and refreshed for a youthful glow.

Hollywood Browzer
Brow Shaper & Hair Remover

I was really intrigued about this product- at first I thought it was a brow grooming kit, but on closer inspection it was nothing I had ever tried or tested before. This is a brow and soft hair remover blade! You can use the blade at a 45 degree angle to quickly get rid of peach fuzz type hair (perfect for upper lip and chin) as well as shaping your brows.

This is a pain free method which needs no prep time such as soap or water, so if you find yourself showered, dressed and then you look down and catch a glimpse of that one really annoying stray leg hair, problem solved! I’ll be doing a video on my Instagram soon to demonstrate the Hollywood Browzer so make sure you’re following me!

Ultrasun
SPF 30 Family Sun Lotion

The great thing about this sun lotion is that it is perfume free. I can’t stand the way some sun lotions smell, and so this water resistant cream from Ultrasun is perfect. I find myself getting a slight sunburn in an hour’s drive as UVA rays can penetrate through car side windows. There is a constant need to protect my arms, neck and shoulders each time I get in the car, so I know that this will be going straight into my handbag!

Saaf Skincare
Pure Face Cleanser & Exfoliating Cloth

I was so excited to try this tester size face cleanser and cloth out from Saaf inside my Shop Skincare box. It smells amazing with the grapefruit peel oil just singing out the jar. The brand is also cruelty free!

So it’s well worth trying Shop Skincare out if you’re looking to buy conscious beauty products for hair, face, skin and body. Why wouldn’t you want to receive a free beauty box each time you shop too?! Stay tuned to find out more from what’s new to the scene and Shop Skincare 💋

Saharasplash x

In collaboration with Shop Skincare.

All thoughts my own.

Why not see what I got up to on my latest London adventure with F&F Clothing and Cancer Research UK!