I've been debating posting this as an outfit post rather than a review but I figured this is my blog and I shouldn't really worry about what I share too much. I wouldn't say I am happy with my body but I am happy in my own skin. I joined the gym about two months ago and was very focused for about six weeks straight but have let it slip the last two weeks. Life's too short though, right? But whatttttever! Onto the post :-)
This set is absolutely gorgeous! Every blogger seems to own a Triangl set these days but I couldn't say no when they got in contact to ask if I would like to feature one on my blog. I love all of the colours and would have loved to have an actual triangle bra but being top heavy always prevents me wearing the prettiest things. Boob problems! I believe this is actually an underwear set but I would 100% still wear this around the pool or down at the beach - who cares about rules?!
I have also been loving my new flip flops from Ipanema which are sooo comfy. I never really wear flip flops unless I am on holiday and even then they are always a cheap £2 pair - but these are something I know will last for ages; hopefully till next summer!
Well here I am, still sitting on my bed in a small house in London three years later, writing a post for Being Ashleigh.
I don't quite know why I started blogging. Thinking about it now, I was so young and it was a big risk to put so much of my life on the internet. If you go way, way back, my blog started off as a beauty blog. Let's just take five minutes out of our day to have a right giggle about this. I know nothing about beauty!
Straight away from day one, I shared my blog with the world. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Word of mouth. You name it, I did it. There was no 'secret blogging so no real life people could find out about it'. I simply wrote, published and shared. In a way, I could have been judged straight away and I have no doubt there were some people (maybe even still!) who thought I was a right saddo with little friends who sat at home writing a blog. However, it's not just a blog. It's one of two of my biggest passions and my income. It makes me so proud and happy to say that. Not everyone can make a sturdy living out of something they love, can they? A 9-5 office job does not appeal to me - although I am not knocking that kinda job at all. I am just lucky enough to say my hobby is more than just a part time hobby.
Blogging is a journey with highs and lows. It's the most exciting and fantastic thing I have ever decided to do but it is pretty scary too. When I first started blogging, I had no idea if anyone was reading what I had to say. However, if you're going to do something and want it to be successful, you need to stick to it! So 10 hits a day soon turned into 70, then 150 and so on. Now, three years later I am incredibly happy and lucky to say my blog has been visited nearly a million times with the most readers trending in the UK, USA, Germany and China. Hello!!
So how has my blog grown since 20th July 2013? I didn't do a post about my blog's second birthday last year and I wish I had so I could see how far it has come. However, I am just so happy that I have stuck to it. I've published almost 500 posts in three years which is just bizarre!
I've hit many brick walls over the past year, especially when I lost my domain last year. I lost 1000 followers so it seemed as if I was back to square one and no one was reading my blog again. However, I then remembered that it's a blog and a blog is a online document type diary. It's just a bonus if anyone reads what you have to say. I decided to carry on and my readership is slowly getting back there - although I am pretty sure the original 1000 Bloglovin followers I had probably think I deleted my blog. Nope, I am still here!
I have been to some really amazing events the past year and from that have made so many new friends. It's great to meet people who understand you whilst having a passion for blogging and social media too. I have grown incredibly close to Charlotte Clothier who is someone I consider a really good friend of mine. There are still so many bloggers I haven't yet met so I hope by this time next year I have :-) Work wise, I have worked with so many fantastic brands: In Love With Fashion, ASOS and New Look to name just a few. I am working on an exciting project too with Very.co.uk at the moment too, which will all be revealed soon!
I honestly just feel really happy and content with the opportunities blogging has given me. It's the one passion, besides photography, that I can natter on for hours about. My family are now beginning to understand what it's all about, although I don't think my nan will ever understand why I take so many photos of myself wearing different clothes! The general support I get from family, friends and all my readers for putting my life out there is so strong and very much appreciated. It honestly means so much.
I can't wait to see what another of year blogging opens up for me. I have hopes to make my content even better! A huge thank you to every reader, comment, email and tweet from you guys. It makes blogging that little more special when you know people are relatively interested in what you have to say and it drives you to want to make your blog bigger and better. So, thank you! X
Before using this, I had never tried a purifying shampoo before. What even is a purifying shampoo? A purifying shampoo is simply an intense shampoo that removes all traces including the build up of products on your hair; restoring the natural oils back into your hair... fresh as a daisy!
I like to use this a couple of times a month and a normal shampoo every three to four days. I don't use a lot of products on my hair on a daily basis unless I am curling my hair in which case I use heat protectant, hair spray and hair shine mist. My hair to no surprise will always feel a little dry the next day so I love this sea salt scrub to remove every trace of product making it feel a lot more cleaner, healthier and smelling fresh!
The consistency is a little weird and I found it a little hard to apply on my scalp at first purely because the texture is a little dry however, adding a little water to the mixture lathers it up whilst not losing the salt texture within the consistency. It says you only need around a teaspoon size but my hair is long and thick so I find myself 'scooping' three times. However, it is a pricy product so I have mixed one scoop with a normal shampoo before which has worked just as good. If anything, the normal shampoo helps to lather it up even more!
All in all, this is a fantastic purifying shampoo and I can totally understand why it is over the £30 mark. I've been using this for a good couple of months now and I'm about half way through the pot which is pretty good!
The truth is, we all lose ourselves every now and then and the truth is I lost myself at the end of the year, regained confidence and then found myself losing myself again. I'll start off by saying it had absolutely nothing to do with a shoddy breakup. If anything, I was a lot happier to end that chapter of my life than carry on in misery. The truth is: I just lost myself.
I'm extremely stubborn and anxious making me the number one worrier in the history of all worriers. Being an artist means I sometimes lack inspiration, ideas and motivation and when you have all three tugging at your heart strings, all you want to do is simply stay in bed and ignore the world; and that's what I did. I am going to do a whole separate post, possibly a video, on my "University experience" but to save the wonderings and the overall cliffhanger, I hated University. I got kicked down a lot which made me lose confidence in not only my work but the ability within myself to create work. I started to compare myself a lot to other artists my age so I only made myself feel worse. Snide comments were thrown around about the work I was creating which I failed to see any positives in. Can you blame me? However, a few months ago I decided to prove everyone who has ever kicked me down, doubted me or laughed at me behind my back and push myself. I aimed to create good work relating to what started off as a basic idea which grew and grew and grew. The only trouble was that time was not on my side but I powered on and I did it. I created successful work which I am incredibly proud of right now. I achieved goals which I could never see myself doing because I believed in myself.
I failed in other aspects and have had to work on stuff again in order to try to succeed. Even now, I don't know if I've passed or failed my degree but if I have failed then I am happy. Not happy because I have failed, but happy that I done it and didn't give up. There were several times I was extremely close to quitting but I didn't. I kept at it and that is the most important point I am trying to make. I don't need a degree to be happy. I don't need to keep in contact with people to be happy. I don't need anything to be happy because I AM happy.
These doubts about myself have affected my blog so much. Blogging means the absolute world to me and I have let not only myself down and my blog's archive but I have let you down. I have a solid readership not so long ago and seeing my blog traffic go down tremendously has really saddened me to the point I've not felt motivated with blogging including the writing of it and the attending of events. People tell me I should go to events to network and trust me when I say, I LOVE networking with other creative people in the blogging community and the fashion industry, but going back to square one; I just wasn't myself. Blogging is a creative platform and so lacking inspiration and motivation elsewhere effects my creativity on a whole. Please forgive me. I am back!
I don't want any negativity on this blog nor do I want to dampen anyone's day but I just felt I had to explain so much not only to you guys but as a documentation to myself so I can look back on this and remember that I saw the light in the dark and I got through it on my own because I am strong minded and stubborn.
Time for a little more positivity.
I now have way loads more time to dedicate to my blog, my work and finding myself. I have met so many lovely people this year and have a certain number of people who support me in all that I do and I am so grateful.
If you have lost yourself then it is okay. This happens to everyone so don't feel like you're the only person in the world going through this. There is still time to find yourself and all it takes is time, space, fresh air and a good few days of Netflix binges to make you feel disgusting so you have no choice but to wake up on a Monday morning and face the world head on. You can do it! I believe in you. Remember you are very much loved.