Fighting the good fight against thinning hair

My hair has been something that I have always been proud of.  It has been blond, pink, brown, fire engine red and is now a coppery colour lightening by the month to cover the emerging greys.

Unfortunately life throws us curve balls.  I live with a number of auto-immune diseases, and a few of these have hair loss and thinning as a side effect.  I am being honest here when I say that hair loss is one of my biggest fears.

A year ago I was prescribed Methotrexate for treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis.  And yes, you guessed it hair loss is a side effect.  Methotrexate is one of the drugs used in chemotherapy and although people with RA take it in a much smaller dose the risk is still there.  I have an underactive thyroid and Pernicious Anaemia too, both of which can effect the condition and thickness of hair.

As this is a positive blog, and a positive post I am not going to dwell on the negatives, but will simply say that my hairdresser confessed that 2 months into the treatment, she didn’t tell me how bad my hair was (I did realise it on some level).  She said she didn’t want to upset me.

Right onto the positives.  Despite having a smaller ponytail, my hair is back to looking shiny and bouncy – so how did I do it.

Starting from the inside …

  1. I take Biotin – I treat myself to a tablet every day – and I know that this has made a huge difference,  My hairdresser noticed after 6 weeks, and then she did comment and told me about the improvement.
  2. I also try to eat as healthy – lots of fruit and vegetables.  I am also a great believer in the health properties of yogurt.
  3. I don’t wash my hair too often.  Around once very 4 or 5 days.  I have heard that this is a good idea as it protects the hair.
  4. I use a thickening shampoo.  I have fallen in love with Elvive Fibrology Thickening shampoo. It has mixed reviews online, but I really think it makes a difference.  I tend to swop my shampoo every couple of months, but I am on my third bottle of this now.  I was away a few weeks ago, and used another shampoo.  I could really see a difference – my hair was flatter and not as shiny.
  5. Linked to the fact that I wash my hair every 4 or 5 days, I love dry shampoo.  It is my secret weapon.  I have tried a few and keep returning to Batiste Dry Shampoo.  I am convinced my hair sometimes looks better on day 3 because of this.  A quick spray – massage the roots and a blast with the hair dryer and I am good to go out of the door in less than 2 minutes.
  6. I also trim my hair regularly and of course colour to hide those greys.
  7. For styling I dry my hair with a blast from the hair dryer and then use my trusty heated curlers.  If I wear my hair up I protect it by using very soft rubber bands and hair pins.

A woman’s hair is her crowning glory and we all deserve to feel pretty.  I hope that these few tips will help those struggling with thinning hair.  I strongly believe that the Biotin is key to this routine.  Much of my other advice is cosmetic, but it is all about feeling fabulous.

Thanks for reading

Kerry x

Always wear your invisible crown, and pink lipstick!

 

crownThe first time I came across the saying, Always Wear your Invisible Crown, I just knew it was meant for me and would, from that day forward be my motto (or one of them).

I have suffered from depression and a poor body image since my teens.  It has taken huge strides (and a bit of therapy) to get me to where I am today.  Most days I can see myself as a fabulous fifty year old, with a curvy body and a pretty face, but there are still days when it is hard.  Tough days when thing don’t always go right or when someone makes a throw-away comment about size. Those are the days I really need my invisible crown.

We are all sensitive and being woman are victims of hormones and mood swings. There are also days when we simply have a down day.  These are the days where we have to dust off those invisible crowns, place them firmly on our heads and know that we are special and to many people. These people love and care about us and know we are worthy of a sparkly head piece. Most importantly we need to believe it ourselves.

If I am being really honest, many of my crowns are not invisible.  I have built up a small collection of crowns, from tiny hairpins that I can tuck into my french pleat when I am smartly dressed for work, to sparkly jewellery and even a few tiaras.

I honestly find that housework is much easier when wearing a crown.  Spinning around the house with a dusting cloth and a crown dancing to music is much more fun that it would be if I was simply polishing surfaces.

The truth is we are all valuable and precious and sometimes we just need to remind ourselves of it.

Another one of my ways of reminding myself that I am a special and confident woman is with a good lipstick.  I had the great fortune to get to try out the Wet n Wild Megalast lip colour at the recent ITWBN event in Galway.  Now here was a ‘crown’ that lasted the whole day!  Through many cups of tea and a few meetings, my lips remained pink.  I had a little touch-up at lunch time and can honestly say that I felt good all day! It really does last and last.

One of my most memorable days was sharing my 50th birthday celebrations with my sister who had travelled all the way from Dubai with this special crown in her luggage.  We spent 5 days in a swanky hotel and I wore my crown everytime we were in the hotel room, even in the bath!

A real princess treat.

Thanks for reading xx

Freckles, spots and other blemishes … at fifty!

IsaDora
Fab concealer to fix me

I would have thought that at the age of 50, I would have grown out of my freckles (as promised by my mother when I was a child).  I thought that pimples and other spots would be a thing of the past – something for teenagers.  Somehow this hasn’t happened.

I am still get spots – too regularly and in have other random blemishes including those black shopping bags under my eyes.  For someone who has been trying to be sophisticated for years, these along with the dreaded freckles, are not helping my case.

Now, I have come to terms with my freckles but it has taken some time.  As a small child I was obsessed with them and tried everything – and I mean everything to get rid of them.  I even overheard an adult conversation where somebody mentioned urine (or was it uric acid)  – and helped myself to my brothers diaper in desparation.  I still shudder at the thought today.

(I was a funny child!)

Anyway thankfully time has moved on and so has cosmetology.  For a while now I have been lusting after my friends blemish palette with the green concealer.  When she does my make-up all these colours are applied with skill and my skin tone is evened out.

Well you can imagine my delight when I attended the Into the West Bloggers Network (ITWBN) event last Sunday and received a fabulous goody bag that contained not only one but tow fabulous skin repair palettes from IsaDora.  The colour correcting concealer has anti-redness (the green one) a concealer, dark circle corrector and a highlighter.  The other is a neutral palette and is going to go to my sister!

I have a good few blog posts that I will be sharing about this fabulous event!  I came home super inspired!

Thanks to Sinead and Saidbh – and welcome to all my new readers – hopefully.

Kerry

Breakfast – setting myself up for the day!

Christmas OatsAs a woman who has been battling with my weight since my early teens I have read a lot, been told a lot, and learnt a lot about food and nutrition.  As I am still struggling, I have some opinions on what is right and what is wrong.  I have probably lost my entire body weight about 3 times (conservative estimate) over the last 30 something years.

It is trial and error really.  Right now I know that I like tasty food, and that I need a decent breakfast.  My winter breakfast of choice is oatmeal porridge.

I have some sort of childhood nightmare memory of not wanting to eat my oats and having the bowl of congealed lumpy grey mash dished up to me for a later meal.  Perhaps that didn’t happen, but it lives somewhere in my subconscious.

I had to overcome this.  Everyone was telling me to eat porridge oats.  Everything I read said eat oats.  So I had to reinvent.

This post is about my Christmas porridge.  I made it one Christmas morning, and added a naughty dollop of whipped cream – it was Christmas after all.

How I do it ….

  • I cook 1/3 cup of oats per serving and bring to the boil with 2/3 cup of water and 1/3 cup of skim milk.
  • I add in a good shaking – about a half teaspoon of cinnamon, and a dash of ginger and any other spice that comes to hand. Cinnamon is great for blood sugar.
  • While the oats are cooking I take …
  • 1/2 cup of frozen berries and bang them in the microwave on high for 2 minutes.

Because I like my food to be pretty, I empty the berries into the middle of the bowl and make some pretty patterns with a tiny bit of agave syrup.

All my breakfast essentials in a bowl and I can keep going till lunchtime (on a good day).

Try it and let me know what you think.

Thanks for stopping by!

Kerry

Ouch!! The Pain of beauty!

2015-01-31 10.14.49 2015-01-31 10.31.02

It is all about eyebrows now – or so I am told.  It is just about 35 years too late for me.

As a teenager I had lovely soft blond hair and nice strong brows.  I cried the first time my friend tried to pluck them.  The fashion was for these beautiful thin plucked brows.  I found it so painful that I really just hid them under my fringe for the most part.  In my twenties I discovered waxing.  No less painful, but far less drawn out.  One or two swipes and beautiful brows are revealed.

Ironically now, I could really do with those brows of my youth.  With the passing of the years, my eybrows have thinned out a little, but of course the straggly ones that were there at 15 are still there now.

I decided to try threading.  Seemed so simple from the Youtube video.  No hot wax, no nasty tweezers.  How much can a length of cotton hurt?  Quite a bit – but the result was well worth it.  Thanks to Lyndsay at the Hair & Beauty Rooms in Westport.  A beautiful job, despite the pain (which thankfully fades fast).  Might even thing of brushing the eternal fringe to the side!

Thanks for visiting and feel free to share your beauty pain story.

Fruit water – my cure!

All good things for cleaning my insides
All good things for cleaning my insides

When I am feeling in need of a bit of a me day, fruit water is my answer.  Ideally I make it up the night before, and then leave it steeping overnight and then start drinking in the morning.

This batch of fruit water was cucumber, lemon and celery, but I do vary it.  My favourite fruit is pineapple, so sometimes I make that the hero.  A bunch of mint is another great addition. All citrus is good too.  In summer I might add some ice cubes, but I think a cleansing drink is better at room temperature.

Throughout the day, I add water and aim to drink at least 2 litres in total.

Plan a day when you are staying at home as you will be running ….  And in my case that adds in exercise as my bathrooms are a flight of stairs away from my living room.  It may be my imagination, but I think my skin glows and I have more energy the next day.

%d bloggers like this: