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.

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Short hair is in. At least in the YouTube-world I reside in. It was Ingrid and Estée and Sanne, and by jove Zoella's followed suit (kinda sorta) only yesterday. The last time I got a similar chop was back when I was trying to rehab my bleached platinum hair.

I was undoubtedly partially inspired to cut off all my hard work by the ladies linked above. But I also have to credit Anna Karina, my forever girl crush. Ever since first seeing her in Alphaville in my first year at film school in LA, I've been mesmerised by that woman's style. And having moved to London, though she is not pictured, some credit has to go to the glorious Brit hair icon, Alexa Chung. Just look at the picture below and you'll see what I mean.

The above pictures were what I brought to my hair stylist. My instruction were: give me Rebecca's fringe and colour, Emma's length and angle, and if I come out as Anna Karina after the many hours in this chair, you've done a good job.


LUSH Eau Roma Water Toner Water  £4.25
I've been using this product a little over two years now and always find myself going back to it whenever I've strayed. I do the Hiron's regime so this baby gets used in my morning and night time skincare. I do three or four spritzes directly to the face and let the soothing hydration commence. Heads up—this does have parabens in (methylparaben).  My skin has never been bothered by it; like I said, this is a product that calms my skin, not aggravates it.