Activated Charcoal – Up your Smile Style

We can talk trends, speak style and give tips about fashion, but no matter the season nothing makes an outfit sing like a winning smile. The traditional methods of dental equipment and dental care like pastes, brushes, mouthwash and floss are so varied it’s hard to choose something that works for you. Some newer innovations are also coming into play, with brands like Quip trying to entirely revolutionise the idea of a “toothbrush” and turning it into more of a “jawscrub”, a term I had never heard of before researching into this article. I just love the chemistry behind beauty, and think that we all need to know a bit more about what we are using and where it comes from. I want you to consider this post as a sort of dental de-mysticism, but also as a guide and review to help out those who struggle with their smile. Everyone’s been talking about this, and now so am I: it’s activated charcoal.

What is activated Charcoal?

Activated charcoal is something that has been around for the better part of several decades, but you may have only just heard about it more recently, or maybe not at all. Before it became better known as a health supplement, it may have come to your attention thanks to those bizarre pictures of black ice cream cones that were making their way around the internet last summer. You might know charcoal better as the solid grey block you come across in art classes. This is actually the same material but with an extra set of special chemical treatments that give it some odd but rather useful properties. Following chemical treatments (usually done with bases, or extra oxygen) activated charcoal develops thousands of tiny, very shallow pores. This means that a single gram of activated charcoal can have between 500 to 1,500 metres of surface area!

Why is all this useful? Well because all these tiny pores creating all this surface area means that activated charcoal is very good at a chemical process called ‘adsorption’. Yes, I spelt that right; where absorption is about one chemical placing another inside itself, ‘adsorption’ is when a chemical sticks to the surface of another chemical. This is where activated charcoal’s main use comes in. Water treatment plant filters use activated charcoal to filter impurities as they bind to the activated charcoal molecules, pulling them out of what then gets pumped into our taps. Still with me? Then let’s move on…

Why is activated charcoal a superfood?

The idea that activated charcoal can work as a superfood to ‘adsorb’ toxins has lead some scientists into thinking perhaps it can adsorb many other harmful and less desirable things from our bodies too. Everything from the stains on our teeth to just plain, everyday toxins. That’s why people have been putting it in their ice creams and burger buns – that and it just makes the ice cream look much more Instagram worthy.

Does activated charcoal honestly work?

There’s definitely lots of science to say that adsorption is a useful process when it comes to water processing and toxin treatment. Those sorts of industries aren’t usually as influenced by the industry I come from- media. Evidence from magazines and online reviews is usually more anecdotal rather than data-based. The idea that activated charcoal could adsorb the stains on your teeth does seem plausible based upon my investigation, but unlike other toothpastes you might want to wash your mouth out thoroughly after brushing! In regular toothpaste, the active ingredients do their best work if they are left on your mouth. With active charcoal, it’s more of a ‘one-and-done’ solution.

When it comes to dental equipment, there may be more mileage. Toothbrushes with activated charcoal in their bristles may be especially useful since you blend direct contact with the teeth plus the vigorous kinetics of a good old-fashioned scrubbing. The bristles can also adsorb mouth odours and other kinds of unpleasantness you might find lurking between your lips and behind your gums. While the science is currently still out on the subject of activated charcoal toothpaste and toothbrushes, the principle behind the idea is at least somewhat sound. Whether activated charcoal will remove the toxins you build up every day during a good cleanse is another question. Activated Charcoal certainly won’t harm anyone, and given all the before and after pics flying around, I might just give it a try- how about you?

Saharasplash x

This is a sponsored post, all thoughts and views my own

A few of my favourite things

As I’m writing this post I can’t help but hear Julie Andrews singing in my ear, but there definitely could be worse songs to have in your head all day! I thought it was about time I did a roundup post of everything I am loving right now, from my favourite pyjamas to what I’m reading. Sound fun? Here are a few of my favourite things…

I’ve recently redecorated the master bedroom and I just love it. The chunky knit throw is from The Range and the blush tone suede pillows are from George, Asda. I’ve taken to making my bed each morning which I have never done before in my life- maybe there is an age you reach and suddenly realise the importance and satisfaction of this task??

TU Alice in Wonderland pyjama set: £16

Every time I see Alice in Wonderland products, it’s in my shopping bag faster than the white rabbit. This gorgeous pale blue pyjama set is from TU by Sainsburys and is £16. Super soft and definitely needed after an evening’s work on the sofa with cake and tea.

Hunkemoller push up bra: £30

My favourite bra right now is this stunner from Hunkemoller: it’s the Samara underwired push up bra, which does up at the front, super handy! This just moulds to my shape and I often forget I’m wearing a bra when I wear it- such a pretty design too.

The life-changing magic of tidying by Marie Kondo: £12.99

It’s no secret that my organisation skills have been somewhat hectic my entire life, then I watch a show on Netflix based on this book. My wardrobes, drawers and the way I see my possessions has entirely changed, and I can honestly say that Marie Kondo is to thank for this. If you haven’t jumped on the ‘KonMari’ bandwagon, I highly recommend you see what it’s all about, especially if you are crap at keeping your house and home tidy!

Pandora Sentimental Snapshots Charm: £40

This Mother’s Day I was truly spoiled, and I now have another charm to add to my collection. This is my most favourite yet, as it looks just like an Olympus Pen camera!

Bioglan Beauty Collagen gummies: £18.99

My health has taken a big hit since having Alice in many ways. I try to stay on top of eating a balanced diet and taking care of my skin, so these beauty collagen gummies from Bioglan are the first thing I reach for in the mornings (they’re on my night stand). No effort except a strawberry treat that will help top up collagen levels and to support healthy hair, skin and nails.

Image Skincare recovery mask: £40 (5 pack)
Image Skincare Rose Quartz face roller: £25

The last stop on my list of favourite things is by far the most relaxing. I am loving Image Skincare’s range of products, here I am using their Rose Quartz face roller and recovery face mask. The mask is wonderful on my sensitive skin, and after the magic has absorbed into my skin, I am left feeling rejuvenated and glowing.

If there is anything you see in this post that I haven’t mentioned where it’s from, leave a comment below and I’ll share all my secrets!

Saharasplash x

Style Feature: four bold looks this spring

If there’s one thing you want to do to stand out this season, it’s definitely stay away from florals. Florals in Spring, although are quite lovely, don’t make as big of an impact as you might want for a special event or wedding invitation. So here’s why I’ve written a handy style feature: four bold looks this Spring. I’ve chosen four outfits and matched them to a pair of shoes and bag so you are all set to go. Take a look at the quartet below and I’ll go through what I’ve picked out to help create a fierce, confident outfit…

Outfit 1: In the Navy

I just love matching a cobalt blue with neon yellow or lime. You will be seeing a lot of neons this year all the way through to the end of summer, so get ahead of the trend and start wearing it in Spring. There’s just something about the right sort of party shoes when pairing with a cropped jumpsuit. And if you get a bag to match too, the whole thing just sings.

Playsuit: I Saw It First
Shoes: Quiz Clothing
Bag: Boohoo

Outfit 2: Spilled Vino

If there’s one pattern that goes well with a dark red it’s leoprd print. Having said that, you want to make sure it’s a subtle leopard print or it might be too over the top. I’ve found these heels from Quiz Clothing that gives a flair of your inner spirit animal each time you step, plus I’ve chosen an on trend box bag to go with it.

Pantsuit: I Saw It First
Shoes: Quiz Clothing
Bag: Shein

Outfit 3: Dotty Girl

I’m starting to think I have a thing about polka dots. I wore a polka dot dress to my graduation ceremony, for my baby shower and also a lot while I was pregnant. Dots are classic and will never disappear from the high street, so why not be bold with a dotty print? I’ve matched this outfit with a textured, pearlised heel and bag for a stand out effect you can count on.

Pantsuit: I Saw It First
Shoes: Quiz Clothing
Bag: Femme Luxe Finery

Outfit 4: Sasspot

I often call my daughter Alice a sasspot these days, and although she hasn’t quite hit 18 months, I can definitely imagine her rocking this look when she’s 18 years! I found this dress in H&M just after Christmas and I’m just waiting for the right event to make its debut. I had some help picking out these accessories from my sister, who is obsessed with transparent attire at the moment. Are you brave enough to expose the contents of your bag? If yes, this outfit is for you.

Dress: H&M
Shoes: Quiz Clothing
Bag: Missguided

So there you have my style feature: four bold looks this Spring. Which one caught your eye the most? Let me know in the comments below and I’ll share your answers on my social media.

Saharasplash x

Thanks for stopping by- make sure to find my blog post featuring entertainment from the U.K. Pleasure Boys before you go!

This is a sponsored post, all thoughts and views my own.

Why this week will be special

There are many reasons as to why I wanted to write a post about this particular week. As many of you will know, the UK celebrates Mother’s Day this Sunday- the adverts are on our screens, display windows are filled with reminders, but I can’t help feel torn about the holiday. I am excited as a mother and being able to spend the weekend with my own mum, but there is a part of me that wishes my mother-in-law, Iris were here. My heart also goes out to many people I know who have lost mothers and female figures in their lives, as it can’t be easy during this season.

I am going to make this week special by dedicating it to all the women who have had a positive impact on my life, for however long or short. My mum being the biggest impact will be getting a few surprises, and we are going to start off the weekend with a three course meal from a local pub in Suffolk (more details to follow!)

This week will also see a lot of pampering with the help from Nivea (items pictured were gifted), a brand super close to my family. My sister never goes without the Nivea daily face cream and there is always a plentiful supply of lip balms and bath products stocked at my mum’s house. I am taking over a few new products like the Rose & Argan Oil Lotion and the Hyaluron Cellular Filler. Sharing is caring, and we share a lot between my nan, mum, sister and I. Generations of love and care really resonates with the Nivea brand, and I am lucky to be able to have such a strong female surrounding still as I am reaching my 30’s.

What is your favourite Nivea product, and which lovely lady would you share it with? Let me know in the comments how you will be celebrating or remembering this week- whatever way, make it special.

Saharasplash x

Thanks for reading, why not check out my latest RUSH Hair experience before you go!

Refresh and restyle at RUSH Farringdon

Have you ever just got up, looked in the mirror and thought, what is my hair doing? Or rather, what am I not doing to my hair? Although I am really good at maintaining my hair week to week and keeping it in good condition, I’ve not had anything done to it at a hairdressers since the last time I visited RUSH Shepherds Bush back in March 2018! So a whole year has passed far too quickly, and I was definitely thinking it was time for a refresh and restyle.

After watching several shows on Netflix trying to work out if I could pull certain hairstyles off, I finally made the decision to have a fringe cut. I used to have a side fringe about ten years ago, but this time I was older and wiser, therefore something a bit less teen and a lot more class was in order.

I made my way into London on a sunny Saturday morning and arrived at the brand new RUSH Farringdon salon just a few minutes walk from Farringdon underground. I was kindly invited by RUSH for my treatment, and I always look forward to working with the RUSH team every time we collaborate.

My stylist for the day was Romina, a Sydney stylist who had just relocated to London. I told her what I would like and she got really excited, knowing a big change was imminent. We took before and after pics against the coolest wall, and then got started!

I was confidently calm as the scissors took to my locks and it was over in about five seconds flat. My short fringe bounced unnaturally either side of my forehead, the roots clearly not wanting to settle on a new direction.

I thought it was amazing even before it was blow dried and styled.

before and after

I stepped out the salon and found a Byron Burger a few buildings down that looked practically empty. I chose a window seat so I could make use of the sunlight to take my first pic avec fringe! My sister interrupted the moment by calling me in a state of shock after seeing my Instagram story of my salon experience. She demanded to see pics instantly, to which I obliged and then she said she loved it- phew!

I’ve been blown away by all the positive and encouraging messages about my new look. I wake up every day happy with my hair and I want to thank RUSH Farringdon and Romina for helping me achieve it!

Saharasplash x

What do you think to the new do? When was the last time you had a refresh and restyle? If you’ve been on the fence about it, I urge you to take the leap and do it!

Doing London Fashion Week my own way

London Fashion Week has ever so quickly come and gone again, and although I didn’t attend any shows this season, I did venture to London to do some catwalking of my own. I met with Surrey-based photographer Lucy Hooper to help me capture some shots wearing Femme Luxe Finery (gifted). We met at 12 o clock in West London and it was unfortunately pouring down!

The rain was not going to stop any time soon, so we decided against the usual South Kensington, white house backdrop and dove into a nearby cafe to get some inspiration with a nice cup of tea and cake.

I just love how wonderfully well these turned out- you can’t go wrong with a mustard cable knit and faux leather leggings on a dreary day. The cafe’s sultry interior made the outfit fit right in as I enjoyed a gluten free red velvet cupcake. As the rain wasn’t prepared to subside for us, we then took to the London Underground to capture some urban shots on the tube. Even though it was rather packed around central London on a Monday afternoon, we still managed to whip the camera out and create some magic moments…

Our next stop was Covent Garden, a place that is swarming during London Fashion Week with people from all over the globe- mostly wearing black vinyl trousers, stompy boots and trench coats. Although that’s not really my style, I couldn’t wait to get changed into outfit number two, a burnt orange jumpsuit! I decided to wear the jumpsuit with a cropped teddy jacket and satchel bag to compliment the warm tones. I love how all the pieces went together to create a stylish yet effortless look. As the weather was still a bit drizzly, we took cover under some of Covent Garden’s pillars to start our next lookbook. The lighting was just right on the cloudy day, just perfect for what we had in mind. We also found a lovely corner filled with plants that really made the high neck jumpsuit stand out from the crowd.

Pillar and plant poses accomplished, we made our way down to Freemason’s Hall, a prime location for budding fashion enthusiasts. Most of LFW’s Fashion Scout shows are held here so we tried our luck to see what was happening. But we found that nothing was happening outside when we arrived, as a show was taking place inside. Timing is everything during Fashion Week, so we made use of the empty, stone steps to create our own catwalk look.

I have never been able to get a good walking shot before, but Lucy managed to pull it off no problem, and it only took about three takes! I decided to save my final look until I got back home as the weather was not letting up. Make sure to keep an eye on my Instagram page for the last look coming soon.

Even though LFW passed me by this time, I still felt that same energy and excitement on that day in London, knowing the whole city was abuzz with models, paps and designers freaking out. We did it in such a relaxed way, I might book another solo photoshoot for fashion week in September! My final word of wisdom: Make the city your own catwalk every time you go exploring, wear each outfit like you mean it and hold your head up high with confidence.

Saharasplash x

Thanks to Femme Luxe Finery for collaborating on this post and to Lucy Hooper Photography

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