What do people really think about grey hair? 

In recent months it’s has become much more noticeable that I’m getting the odd grey hair. At 35 this was bound to happen sooner or later. 

Worried about this ageing me, I’ve been pondering what do do with my greys. Ignore it, pull them out or reach for the hair dye. 

I decided to do a little bit of research as I was curious to see what people really felt about grey hair. Particularly as 2016 saw granny hair being a big trend. For the record, I didn’t get the ‘grey hair trend’.

One 24hr twitter poll later I had a slightly better understanding. 

Almost 3/4 of the people who responded to the poll agreed that they weren’t actually that bothered about going grey as it happens to us all. That’s kind of good to know, I’m not suddenly past it! 
Interestingly though 100% of people agreed that society is more acceptable of men having grey hair. 


From a personal perspective I sit very much on the fence with my feelings about my hair turning grey. 

My hair is currently its natural colour. I grew out any colourant that was present and then had the remnants cut off. 

I would describe my hair as mid brown, it is actually a lot lighter than I remember after it being dyed a darker brown for so many years. In the past year I have had my first noticeable greys. They actually sit under my parting so are only really noticeable if I pull my hair back. 

The texture of these are different though and feel much coarser. 

I can deal with this for now but am unsure how to proceed with my hair when it becomes more noticeable. To be quite frank I can be very lazy when it comes to my hair. One of the main reasons I stopped colouring it in the first place was that I found it such a chore keeping on top of the roots. 

I also think very white or silvery looking hair can look quite stunning on the right person. 

When it came to peoples response to grey hair, using hair dye was the most popular response. Though I was actually surprised that leaving greys alone was a very close second. 


I’m not rushing out to dye my hair anytime soon. I also get enough fall out all ready that I’m not going to voluntarily pull out any extras.   For now I’m in the ‘leave it alone’ camp and am comfortable with that. If these results are accurate people aren’t actually that bothered by the odd grey hair anyway. 

Do you agree with this poll? 

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this. 

Day Tripping | ZSL London Zoo

On Saturday I finally got to tick one of the bigger items off my 2017 bucket list.  We took the children to ZSL London Zoo. We got up early, packed a picnic and drove up to London. 

We had had much debate over whether we were going to get the train to Regents Park or brave driving. In the end the fact that there was the hassle of a rail replacement service, the decision was made for us.

It was actually really simple getting there by car and we were able to park in the Zoo’s car park which is a very short walk from the entrance. The cost of parking is £14.50 for the day. This extra fee is kind of annoying as entry price to the zoo is so high, but reasonable for London prices. It’s not a big car park so I would advise getting there for opening time if you plan on doing this. 

We were able to save some money on our entry fee by trading in Tesco club card vouchers. This is worth bearing in mind if you are planning a visit as it can save you a lot of money on your entrance fee

London Zoo is the worlds oldest scientific Zoo, it opened in 1828 as collection for scientific study. Today the zoo is a registered charity and undertakes important conservation work on critically endangered species such as its successful Sumatra Tiger breeding program. 


Throughout the day there are various different talks and feeds that you can watch. These are very popular so it’s worth planning your day around these if you want a good view point. 

Highlights for me included the Reptile house and the Aquarium. Aside from being able to view a huge variety of species, the buildings themselves are very interesting. Opened in 1927 they are great example of architecture of that time period, with original features still present. 

The reptile house featured in Harry Potter: The Philosophers Stone. We spent a lot of time trying to work out which particular tank Dudley got stuck in. 






The Animal enclosures are very open with a good amount of outdoor space. Rather than glass enclosures, moats, low fences and netting are widely used. It does feel that you are able to get quite a close up view of the animals. 

The Gorrila enclosure is a particularly good example of this.



We spent a good five hours at London Zoo, there is plenty to see and do including a children’s hands on area, climbing frames and a traditional carousel.

It is possible to see all of the animals in one visit but not necessarily all of the talks. You can become an annual member of ZSL that allows you unlimited entry to both ZSL London Zoo and ZSL Whipsnade Zoo. For our family, if we paid by direct debit, the annual membership fee is roughly the same as the gate price if  we were to visit each of the zoos just once. This is something worth considering if you wanted to visit both or more than once a year. 

We took a lot of pictures during our visit so I’m going to end this post by sharing some of the best with you. 




My Weekly DIY Facial Routine 

One of my favourite indulgences is to have a facial. Now I can neither afford to do this on a weekly basis or have the time for that matter. I do like to give myself a bit of a DIY facial once a week though. If you want to know my routine and the products I use then carry on reading…

The Double Cleanse 

I like to use a cleansing oil to break down any makeup I might be wearing. I am currently using the Sanctuary Spa Ultimate Cleansing Oil £12 When massaged in with water this turns into a lovely milky constistency. 

I then like to follow with Bioderma Sebium Miceller water from £5.10, to remove any last residue. 

Exfoliation

I’m not the worlds biggest fan of exfoliating. This is because I usually end up feeling like my skin has been over stimulated and have some kind of reaction. Exfoliating is important though as it stimulates and speeds up cell renewal. 

At a recent facial appointment I was recommended Decleor Phytopeel £28. 

Rather than containing abrasive exfoliating particles this exfoliating cream contains lemon, marjoram lavender and thyme essential oils to provide a much gentler form of exfoliation. 



Facemask Time

My current facemask of choice is Origins Out of Trouble Mask, £24. I might be in my mid-thirties but I still have problems with frequent break outs. This helps to combat that and calm the inevitable redness. 

I have written a full review previously, you can check that out here.

Toner

Once I’ve removed my mask I like to follow with a natural toner. This makes sure I’ve removed every last drop of mask and also helps to prime my skin ready for moisturiser. 

My current toner of choice is Madre Labs Unscented Witch Hazel Toner, from £1.61. 

This is a really cheap toner that is worth picking up from iherb.com. 

Serum 

I think of serum as an intense hit of superfood for my skin. In the past I have been told that my skin is dehydrated so I opt for a serum designed to maximise hydration. 

Clarins new Hydra-Essentiel range is perfect for this. The Intensive Moisture Quenching bi-phase serum  £44 has had a dramatic impact on my skin since I started using it. 

Moisturiser 

If I am giving myself a DIY facial I tend to do this in the evening. It makes sense for me to use an Intensive night cream at this step. I am currently using The Body Shop Oils Of Life Sleeping Cream £29. 

This feels very luxurious and indulgent on the skin and I do feel my skin is looking and feeling plumper Since I started using it. 

Eyes 

The skin around the eyes is a lot thinner and much more delicate. I always use specifically targeted products for this area. 

I am currently using Exuviance Age Reverse Eye Contour £41.

Now this is very pricey in my opinion but I was lucky to be gifted this at a blog event last September. I am still working through the same bottle so it does last a long time. 
It was explained to me at the time that with Exuviance products the effect isn’t instant, the benefits are seen over a period of time (I’m talking months). Six months in I am definitely seeing the results. There are no lines around my eyes whatsoever! Big claim I know….

So I know that sounds like rather a complicated skin care regime. Do bear in mind that this is my once a week DIY facial. On a daily basis I’m too lazy to double cleanse and if I exfoliated everyday I’d have no skin left. Using a good nightcream and eye cream though are a daily essential for me. 

How we taught our teen to deal with online Trolls

Our thirteen year olds social media outlet of choice is Instagram. He is a bit of a skater boy and loves to post videos of his latest trick he has learnt, or a picture of his new deck that he has saved his pocket money up for and finally been able to afford to buy. 

We have no problem with this, our rule is that as parents we follow his account and are Facebook friends. This way we are able to keep an eye on what he is sharing, and ensure he doesn’t experience any problems. We feel we still have a small amount of control. 

One thing we aren’t able to do is control comments from online Trolls. Harrison has experienced his fair share of trolling. Some of the trolls actually turned out to be so called school friends. Teenagers can be absolute tools! Some are strangers who have seen the first comments from this ‘friend’ and see this as an opening for a free for all trolling session. 

Once particular boy from school became a huge problem for a while. He seemed to get a kick out trolling under the guise of it’s just ‘banter’. It isn’t just Harrison that has fallen victim to this boy.  Anyone who has tried to stand up to him then becomes his next target. 

One of Harrison’s primary school friends learnt this the hard way after responding to  one such comment, with the other boy going as far as making a video inviting people to hate on him for standing up for his friend. Nice kid!! Not! 

Knowing who this boy was we initially took the route of discussing this with the schools pastoral care to see if they could help. Unfortunately other than pulling the boy aside and having a chat with him about appropriate online behaviour the schools stance on this is there is nothing they are able to do if it isn’t actually happening on school premises. 

Left to deal with this problem ourselves we had to work out the best way to mange it. 

We had a sit down with Harrison and discussed to what extent he felt this was just ‘banter’ and if he was finding it hurtful. He admitted that he was finding some of the trolling upsetting but as the instigator was part of the same friendship group he didn’t want to create further problems at school. 

Harrison agreed that for now we would block this boy from leaving any comments on his Instagram page. This has reduced any trolling to almost zero. 

We also advised him to completely ignore anything that he felt was a trolling comment. After all the trolls get off on a reaction. Funnily enough that stops any potential troll in their tracks. 

I noticed one such comment yesterday and am glad to see Harrison has ignored it. By refusing to acknowledge this person they went away. 

I am so proud of the fact that Harrison is mature enough to deal with trolls in this way. It really isn’t easy to ignore such comments but it is by far the most effective way of getting rid of them. 

Harrison is a confident and sociable boy so is able to to do this. I do feel it would be much harder for anyone who struggles with confidence to just ignore trolling. This is why it is so important to have an agreement with your child that enables you to monitor their online activity. 

What do you think is the best way to beat those Trolls? 

Mini-Egg Rocky Road |A Kid friendly No-Bake Make

This very sinful but tasty treat combines two of my favourite things, classic Rocky Road and Cadburys mini-eggs. It’s super easy to make a kept my son entertained and away from his Nintendo DS yesterday afternoon. 

When I shared a picture of them on Instagram it got a lot of interest so I thought I’d share the recipe. 

The basic recipe I use I came across a couple of years ago through BBC Food. I tend to change up what I add to my Rocky road depending on what I might have in the cupboards. 

I usually like to add some from of dried fruit such as glacé cherries or cranberries if it’s Christmas time, as it is nearly Easter we went with the mini eggs instead of a fruit element. 

Ingredients 

  • 200g Digestives
  • 100g Mini Marshmallows 
  • 125g Unsalted Butter
  • 3 TBL Spoons Golden Syrup
  • 200g Dark Chocolate 
  • Bag Mini Eggs

Method 

Melt the chocolate, butter and syrup in a saucepan over a low heat. Stir till smooth and remove from heat.

Break up digestive biscuits into small pieces and add to pan with the Marshmallows. (If I was using cherries I would usually add them at this point).

Mix well until everything is evenly coated with the chocolate mixture. 

Transfer to a foil lined tin, (this makes it easier to remove later as it’s can be sticky). 

Decorate with your mini eggs. 

Allow to set in fridge for at least 2hrs. 

Remove from fridge and with and dust with icing sugar. 

Lift out of pan using edges of foil, then cut into 16 pieces. 

Enjoy! Just try not to eat it all at once! I failed and ate about 3 pieces, #SorryNotSorry! 

My Current thoughts on Minimalism | I watched ‘that’ Netflix Documentary 

Regular readers of this blog will know that I have been trying to downsize and de clutter my life. One of my first areas to tackle was my bulging wardrobe using the Project333 method. You can read more about that in this post here

Things have certainly improved in that department, though I did fall off the wagon a bit recently. I am a self confessed shopaholic so you can imagine how much of a challenge changing this behavioural pattern has been. 

After deciding that I needed some inspiration I decided to watch the Netflix documentary Minimalism: A Documentary About The Important Things. You can find more information on it here. Whilst I wouldn’t say that this has been life changing or I’ve had an epiphany, I do feel I took some important lessons from it. 

The documentary touched on America’s consumer led throw away culture and why this has been the norm. The ability to participate in conspicuous consumption is seen as part of fulfilling that American dream. In laymans terms this means that we have been conditioned to believe that what we consume in terms of material possessions portrays how successful and happy in life we are. Obviously I’m not an American or living in America but this rings true of most progressive countries. 

This is a notion that I completely agree with. As a society we have indeed become accustomed to that misguided need to seek  fulfilment from material things. The problem is that sense of fulfilment is often short lived before we are dissatisfied and looking for the next ‘must have’ item. That buzz you get from buying something new and sharing it on Instagram is what feeds the habit. 

Retailers convince us that if we are having a bad day or simply feeling a bit down that some retail therapy is the answer to our problems. It’s not though! A new pair of shoes won’t change the fact that your job sucks or your boyfriend cheated on you. 

I feel I have made a conscious decision to change my ways. This isn’t going to happen overnight though. I’m going to use a huge cliche now. I’m on a bit of a journey of discovery and gradually working out what things are important to me. 

Since downsizing my wardrobe, back in November I have been a lot happier. Even though I have less clothes I never say to myself I have nothing to wear. Why? Well for a start every damn item in that wardrobe I love. If something doesn’t fit or make me feel special I’m not going to hold onto it. 

Now I know that plays into the whole throw away fashion problem but hear me out. I am learning to be mindful about what I consume. I ask myself questions such as ‘Do I actually need this?’. 

I would be lying if I said I had completely stuck to the project 333 method of managing my wardrobe. Just working in fashion retail presents temptation on a daily basis. As part of my job I am required to act as a brand ambassador and dress in the latest collections that are on sale at work. For this reason my work wardrobe is constantly changing to keep up to date. 

It is much easier for me to control the basics. Recently I bought two pairs of jeans, one black and one blue. That could seem excessive but I had lost weight and the two pairs of jeans I already owned kept falling down. Instead of holding on to those jeans that didn’t fit I took them along to my local charity shop. In the past I probably would have held on to them ‘just in case’. For me being able to let go of material possessions that no longer serve a purpose to me is a big step forward. 

I certainly wouldn’t describe myself as a minimalist. I enjoy shopping and collecting pretty things. One thing I picked up from the documentary is that It’s okay to have a collection if you feel it genuinely adds value to your life. That is the key thought process I have in mind now when deciding whether to give space in my life to a particular material item. 

As an example I have what most people would consider a large amount of makeup and beauty products. I see trying out new products and reviewing them on my blog as a rewarding hobby. 

I am making small changes in this area though. If I don’t like a product or it doesn’t work for me then realistically I’m not going to reach for it. What is the point of hoarding something if I don’t use it. It is just going to sit there untouched and getting closer and closer to its expiration date, losing any value it had. Somebody else though might love what doesn’t work for me so these are now going to be passed on.

I used to have 3 separate beauty subscription services delivered each month. Why? Well I had justified it by saying that this was a more cost effective way of trying out new products. I only have one body though so this was excessive. I couldn’t possibly use everything in one month. 

At present I have just one subscription service. I tried going cold turkey but found I really did actually miss receiving my monthly beauty package. That is okay though I haven’t failed and one is a vast improvement on three. 

If you have access to Netflix it is definitely worth checking the documentary on minimalist living out. I’m very aware that this type of lifestyle isn’t for everyone but it certainly helps you to see through the clutter and work out what is important in your life. 

Let me know your thoughts on this.

Life lately – it’s been a while!

It’s been a little while since I’ve sat down to write a blog post. There have been a couple of big reasons for this. 

Let’s get the negative one out of the way first…I’ve been lacking in inspiration. Yup I’ve been having a few head scratching moments and come up blank. 

My other excuses are far more positive and mainly due to a lack of time. Back in February I gained a promotion at work. This has meant switching from a part time role to full time. I’m still learning how to juggle without dropping too many balls. Let’s just say family, work then sleep have taken priority in that order. Blogging has taken a very firm back seat. 

I’m not complaining though I promise. I love my job and feel I’ve finally found a company to work for that fits who I am. I hope to grow with them and work towards gaining another promotion when the next opportunity arises. At the moment I’m like a sponge trying to soak up all the new skills and knowledge I can get. That’s probably why my brain has switched off from blog post inspiration. 

I’ve also found having this to focus on hugely beneficial when it has come to dealing with my feelings surrounding my mums death. It seems strange to me that she has been gone for over two months now, that it’s been a whole month since her funeral. The hardest thing to come to term with is that Death is so final and life will carry on regardless. All these great things are happening in my life and Yet I can’t tell my Mum. Mmmm….

Mother’s Day was an interesting experience. I was very anti the whole occasion and kept yelling at every promotional email, TV advert or instore display to F-Off! How inconsiderate of them? Did they not know I had just lost my mum and that it was like a slap in the face? 

Well off course not…don’t be a prat Katy! Grief  does that to you sometimes though. 

Wow that got a bit deeper than I intended! 

Back to the positives…

The kids have just broken up from school for the spring holidays. I have a weeks annual leave coming up so that means time to do some fun stuff. We have a trip planned to London Zoo and I hope to finally see Beauty and the Beast. (Still pissed off at Primark that I didn’t get my chip mug #chipgate).

I did buy some pretty bedding from Primark though, mainly because I haven’t had time to wash my old sheets. Lazy I know! I told you I’m still getting used to working full time. 


After not seeing the Hubby for about three days post Westminster attack (the pitfalls of being married to a police officer) we managed to cram in a lunch date. Byron burger is fast becoming one of my guilty pleasures. Their new menu is so so good. 

I had the limited edition Korean inspired Kimicheese burger  which involves Korean BBQ glaze, bacon, Freddar cheese, crispy onions, kimchi cucumbers, Gochuchang sauce and Ssamjang mayonnaise. 


I didn’t stop there either I also had the Gangnam fries which come with Freddar cheese sauce, jalapeños and Gochuchang sauce. 

Book wise I’ve just finished reading Bridget Jones Baby. If ever I feel I haven’t got my shit together I reach for a bit of Bridget she makes a mess of things far more than I do!

I’m currently reading Reap the Harvest by Margaret Dickinson. This falls into the saga genre and is that last in a trilogy that spans three generations of women who lives centre around a coastal farm in Lincolnshire. This book is set in the 50’s, previous books weee set in the 20’s and 30/40’s. 

So that’s a little bit of what I’ve been up to recently. I hope to be a little bit more productive throughout April.

35 things I’ve learnt in 35 years 

So it was my birthday very recently. I celebrated my 35th, or as my charming husband renamed it my halfway to turning 70. It’s a good job I have a sense of humour!

As we grow older apparently we are supposed to get a bit wiser so I thought it would be fun to try to come up with a list of  35 things I’ve learned in my lifetime. 

Now be warned, some of that list is a bit weird, some humorous and some of it gets a bit deep. So here goes…..

1. Disney doesn’t loose its appeal just because you’re an adult. Did someone say Beauty and the Beast? 

2. It still isn’t a good idea to drink a bottle of wine on a school night. 

3. Quality really is better than quantity. On a night out I’d rather have 1 decent glass of wine than wince through a cheap shity bottle just to get drunk. 

4. Buying cheap tights is a false economy. Without fail they ladder on the first wear.

5. Running into Primark for that cheap pair of tights usually results in an unplanned shopping spree. 

6. My P.E teacher was right when she said ‘You would enjoy sports far more if you actually joined in’. Going long on the rounders pitch was perhaps a wasted opportunity. 

7.  No matter how old you get there are times when you still need a hug from your mum. 

8. It’s easy to take it for granted that your parents are always going to be around. Don’t, treasure them whilst you can. 

9. Watching Friends as a grown up is much more entertaining. There were so many jokes that went over my innocent teenage head. 

10. Comfort takes priority over being ‘on trend’. If I can’t eat a decent meal in it I’m not wearing it! 

11. I’m never going to master the art of the perfect winged eyeliner. Some of us just don’t have the skills. 

12.  Having good eyebrows can take years off how old you look. 

13. You no longer dread being asked for ID once you hit thirty. In fact on the rare occasion it happens it actually makes your day. 

14. When life gets tough it helps to have a sense of humour. 

15. I’m never going to be able to afford a Channel handbag. There’s my justification for spending £25 on a Channel eyeshadow then. 

16. You feel you’ve made it in life when you can actually afford to save for your pension. 

17. I never should have chucked those embroidered Topshop jeans that I had aged 17. Yup they would have been bang on trend right now! 

18. I should have read the Harry Potter books years ago, they really are rather good.

19. Just because you’re an adult it doesn’t mean you can escape the monthly hormonal spots. 

20. French skin care brands are the best. 

21. Grey hairs are inevitable,  we all get them eventually. 

22. Kids will always point out your flaws, such as those grey hairs or hormonal breakouts. Little buggers! 

23.Working mums guilt is a thing.

24.  If you find a job you love ‘that Monday morning feeling’ doesn’t exist. 

25. The little things in life, such as a full coffee shop loyalty card, can make the day so much better.

26. The Greggsnuts really is the best! It’s the closest I’m ever going to get to a Cronut. 

27.  You really shouldn’t fret about being single. That special someone will come along when you aren’t looking for it. 

28. Your popularity status at school will have no reflection on how successful you are as an adult.

29.  Its natural to grow apart from friends as your lives go in different directions. 

30. You might fight with your sisters growing up but as an adult they can become your closest friends.

31. Afternoon naps make me far more productive of an evening. Shame I’m working most days! 

32. My obsession with Zombie films has prepared me well for any apocalyptic situation. Don’t forget to double tap! 

33. Turns out I can only park by reversing into the parking bay and not face first.  Why??

34. It really is impossible to keep everyone in life happy, so don’t bother trying as you’ll just get your knickers in a twist. 

35. Occasionally it’s okay to put yourself first, be kind to yourself as you deserve it. 

Thanks for stopping by schoolrunbeauty.com, 

Dupe Alert! | The £5 alternative to Illamasqua hydra veil 

I am a huge a fan of Illamasqua hydra veil £32I did a full review of this hydrating gel primer back in December. I won’t go into too much detail about that product now as I would just be repeating myself. If you want to read that indepth review you can do so here. What am going to talk  about  today  though is a budget dupe I have for the primer.

The Skin Define Hydro Prima MUA £5 is a great purse friendly alternative to the Illamasqua’s cult primer.

Now I’m going to get the flaws of opting for the budget alternative out of the way first. You aren’t going to get the same skin care benefits of the original from the MUA offering but it is 1/6 of the price.

However If you are looking for a hydrating aqua based primer that performs in a similar way then this will do just that.

It feels just as light and refreshing on the skin and plumps up those fine lines so you have a perfectly smooth base for applying foundation.

In terms of longevity it isn’t quite as good as the Illamasqua primer but not enough to stop me using this for work on an everyday basis. Let’s be honest here for special occasions I will always reach for the original.

Visually and texture wise the product is very similar. Both have a very jelly like texture that settles back smoothly in the jar after being disturbed.

The MUA packaging is very basic looking in comparison but then if it had super fancy packaging it would cost a lot more than £5.


The MUA Skin Define Hydro primer is a budget dupe definitely worth trying out if you can’t justify spending out £32 on Illamasqua hydra veil. 

Have you tried either of these primers before? If you have tried both do you agree with me? As always share your thoughts in the comments. 

Deal alert! -Extra 20% off Topshop sale | My top picks

Just thought I would give fellow topshop lovers the heads up. They have an awesome extra 20% of sale items. I have just been a bit naughty and order myself this velvet cold shoulder dress for a mere £4. That is including delivery!


As I’m slightly over excited by this I thought I would share with you my top picks from the Topshop sale. 
Disney Princess PJ set £9.60

This High neck twist crop top £4 would have been mine. Alas it’s not available in my size. Boo! 

Pregnant ladies how flipping gorgeous is this dress? I never wanted to spend a lot of money on clothes when I was pregnant so at £8 this is a bit of a steal. 

 I’m in love with these velvet sandals. They are just £8 and are still available in most sizes.
 I couldn’t possibly walk in these (dumb back problems) so I’m just going to admire from afar. Sigh for the days that I used to be able to totter about in shoes like these. Queue sad face! 

I have an almost identical pair of these faux leather trousers that I bought from Topshop about four years ago. At just £9.60 these are not to be missed. I paid a lot more than that for mine. 

This pale pink real leather clutch bag is now only £12. It is so classic in style so is a definite investment piece. 

Honestly there is loads of great stuff to be found at really great prices it really is worth a look. Do bear in mind the very low priced items may only be available in one size. You might be lucky though a grab a bargain like I did. 

* image credit topshop.com used for illustration and sharing purposes. 

Just because you are a busy mum it doesn't mean you can't have any me time!

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