September 11th.

"What's today?"
An innocent, anodyne, purely date-seeking question was posed to me this morning. But when I flicked over to the sidebar to check,

"Oh. It's September 11th."

Like most Americans, especially those around my age, I have a September 11th story. And they usually all start with a variation on 'I remember...'

Lost at sea.

This feels kind of like walking into a meeting you've been skipping for the last couple months. Everyone lifts up their head to look as you come through the door. And then they go back to shuffling their papers, ignoring your casual sheepish wave.

Hey guys.

For months I've been ruminating about how to write here now that I am not freelance. How do non-freelance people blog?! Comment some examples. I don't want this to be a place where I talk about my job because I spend most of my waking hours doing and thinking about my job. I really want my blog to be a separate entity but I'm beginning to wonder if it can be. My job is a huge part of my life now. And I feel like if I ban myself from talking about it... well, what else will I have to say here?

Porthcurno, September 2014, analogue, light.

I'm taking a break from frantically packing everything I own into tote bags (I'm moving Tuesday) to share with you some completely unrelated photos. You. Are. Welcome.

You may recall a similarly titled post that cropped up here back in April. Yes? Yes! These are part two, the 'Light' series, of my Cornwall photos (aka, the prints from the Boots disposable that didn't turn out as dark and grainy). Ross and I stayed in the guesthouse of one the cottages pictured above. See the one on the right with the trio of windows jutting out from the roof? Dat us. Literally on the edge of England. See those rocks? Yeah, they drop directly down to ocean.

Fair Trade & Sustainable Fashion.

L: SVILU Tailored Green Pants, £140  //  R: Groceries Apparel Black Jersey Dress, £40    

I'm gonna come out and say that shopping for sustainably made fair trade clothes is a bit of a minefield. 

I started this journey only a couple months agothe journey being to locate where I can actually buy ethical, sustainable clothes, or is it thrift shops and eBay for the rest of eternity. Spoiler alert: I found some places.

In a previous post I mentioned that I want to live more consciously and sustainably. I made a pledge to myself to stop buying from stores that have their products predominantly made by exploited children and impoverished workers. Cool.  Good. Step in the right direction. Now where do I cloth myself?

First Book Buys of 2015.

These are in fact the first books I bought this calendar year. I only just got around to putting up the photos. Because I am me.

On my mind.

I've had some pretty big postsbig concept posts, I guessrattling around a while in my brain. But I haven't worked out how to articulate some of these ideas.

So instead I thought I'd steal some beautiful Instagrams from my Posts You've Liked feed (credited with click thru and below ofc) and do a little mind dump.

  • I'm not gonna let myself buy from Amazon anymore.

  • Kristen Stewart's birthday was this week. I still have a weird thing for Kristen Stewart.

  • I have no desire to watch films anymore. Old or new. I went to film school. This concerns me. But only when I allow myself to think about it.

  • I want to read Outlander so I can watch sexy Scottish men on telly.

  • Where can I buy clothes that aren't made in a sweatshop or from sketchily obtained raw materials? Is it People Tree, Kuyichi, and charity shops for the rest of my life?

Porthcurno, September 2014, analogue, dark.

For my trip with Ross to Cornwall last autumn, I bought two shitty disposable cameras from Boots for us to take along.

That way we could have a Ross-cam and an M-cam to look back on when we returned home to London.

The above depicts alternating swigs from a local brew of Cornish cider. This stuff was strong. After an ill-fated attempt to stroll (trek) through the middle of nowhere to get to the nearest town (completely my fault for overestimating my actual enjoyment of three-hour-long walks), we happened upon a tiny farm selling some bits and bobs to passersby. The jug of cider was cheaper than the bottled water. So logic says buy it to sip while you wait for a taxi to carry you back to your cottage.

The cruelty-free deodorant dilemma.

Raise your arms, take a sniff, today we gon' talk 'bout yo pits. Deodorant can be one of the most challenging products to replace with a cruelty-free alternative. Today I'm breaking down four that I've tried, letting you know which ones worked for me.

Corgi Instagrams.

I did the thing, guys. I went to university. I got a degree. And I found myself in a job in a completely different field.

I'm a proper adult now with a nine to five(-thirty). I work on a Windows desktop (*cries*). I shuffle to the office kitchen to make myself a tea. And I'm fortunate enough to really enjoy what I do and the people I work with. But the first couple weeks adjusting to a new routine took a toll on my body like I never could have predicted.

#BeCrueltyFree Week!

Pretty much everyone has their thing. Their cause. Their crusade. Striving to switch to cruelty-free cosmetics became that for me this year.

I've been a vegetarian since high school but I never considered myself a shout-it-from-the-rooftops animal activist. Obviously unnecessary harm to a living, feeling creature — bad. Not a fan. But you also won't find me spending my free time at a petting zoo. And if there's a spider in my room, I'll be cowering on the other end of the flat until someone chucks it out the window.

I have total respect for the people at that do actively fight against animal testing. And I mean the shouty, getting arrested (maybe not paint throwing but to each their own) activism. What I do want to say is that you don't have to strap yourself to a tree facing a bulldozer to make a difference in the world.

Valentine's Day with LUSH

The search for cruelty-free UVA SPF30+ facial suncare.

Jesus, what a title. Let's brake that down a bit.

 cruelty-free?  Made by a brand that does not test on animals (ingredients & final products), does not sell in the Chinese market (where it is required by law to test), and is not owned by a parent company (L'Oréal, Shiseido, Kosé) that sells in China or might test for other "reasons" 
 UVA?  From Hirons: "UVA rays penetrate deep into the skin, gradually destroying elasticity and causing premature ageing." I'm 23 and getting older. I want my skin to look like it does now when I'm 43. I want this stuff in my skincare regimen. If a product contains SPF, it protects for UVB but not necessarily UVA (source)
 SPF30+?  I need a sunscreen that has a protection factor of 30 or higher because I am pale-ass-pale. Also I have a family history of melanoma so the more I can do to ward off that, the better. 
 facial?  No, not the one where I get pampered sitting in a chair. I want a sunscreen product that's formulated to be used on the face. Or at least claims to be suitable to both body and facial use.

It sounds like I am asking for a lot here. And after spending a couple hours researching through Paula's Choice and blog recommendations, it was becoming more apparent that maybe this is a lot to ask for. There are of course a lot of products that tick all the boxes except cruelty-free. Then some that are cruelty-free but don't have high enough SPF. Or are marketed as a beauty balm, not a sunscreen. Or marketed as a moisturiser with SPF rather than a just pure and simple sunscreen.

Putting an all-call out on twitter did yield some results. Bless you, Twitter. So here's what I've narrowed my options down to.

Haircut inspiration, part 1.

Cruelty-Free Finds in 2014.

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