Saturday, 27 August 2016

What's the deal with elastics?

Ew. I reached for an elastic today from my elastic-drawer, and got my hand in something sticky and greasy. It turned out that the elastic I touched was sort of half-melted and really weird!

When I went through them, it turned out a lot of the elastics had become really weird: Some were dry and crinkled up and broke when I pulled them, and some all slimy and melted-like.

In the end, I threw away like one third of them!

Have you guys tried something like that before? Why is this happening?

Thursday, 25 August 2016

Giveaway at Nightblooming!

In celebration of her upcoming books, Nightblooming will be having lots of exciting things coming up as well as hosting giveaways!

Also, I really hope to have an interview with the very busy Nightblooming some day... 

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Today's hair

This is a good example of how some angles of some hair do's are cute...

...Some are "Meh".

...And some are "Bleh".

Saturday, 20 August 2016

Today's hair

I don't usually take pictures of my standard, braided Nautilus bun.
But I somehow managed to make my ends hang out over the bun and I thought it looked pretty cute. I might do it intentionally next time.

Thursday, 18 August 2016

Took a day off :)

As pretty as the mornings are when I'm waiting for the bus, it felt good to get out of it today. 

I've been doing some overtime the last two weeks, almost a 60 hours work week last week. So I bet accounting doesn't complain either!

Speaking of work, my coworkers told me the buildings have a lot of ghost stories and cold spots, so I've been a "little" on edge when people start clearing out and going home in the evenings. I was warned about how the lifts "have a life on their own in the evenings and nights", going up and down and opening and closing at nothing, but it still scared the crap out of me every time.
That's one thing I definitely won't miss! Brr.

Hubby an I went to Malmöfestivalen, mostly to try some different foods, haha.

Malmö is a really strange town: Some parts of it is beautiful and really picture-worthy, other are concrete hellholes filled with people who will obviously never pay taxes.

My poor skin was definitely happy to get a day off from work too. It will probably take it a few more days to recover.
The air there is super dry from the A/C, so once I noticed, I figured I would take one of the heavy hitters from my stash: COSRX Hyaluronic Acid Hydra Power Essence. But, my skin seemed less and less happy. It made me confused, because it didn't just seem like "dry and unhappy", but "reacting to something"-unhappy. Since I knew it was aloe vera free, it made me extra confused (Some blogger complained that it didn't contain aloe vera). A few days ago I looked it up on COSDNA, and there was the problem: Hippophae Rhamnoides Water as ingredient #1. Aka. sea buckthorn. Aka the ingredient I'm the most allergic to.
Some 10+ years ago I used a Dr Hauschka vitamin C mask that really burned. It left my face so red and swollen that people could tell from my voice over the phone (I refused to leave the house until it had calmed down again). That's when I learned sea buckthorn is murder on my skin.
Fortunately it's super rare to find in skincare. In fact, I've only seen it in the Dr Hauschka mask and the COSRX essence. So I stopped looking for it in my ingredient lists.
Well, live and learn.

Speaking of skin stuff: I've signed up for the Asian beauty geekage! in Malmö on the 27th. Just in case any of my local readers would be interested too.
I don't really have a lot of stuff I don't use, or a lot of samples around any longer, but I packed up what I could find...

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Today's hair

Good old Chinese bun held with an Elk And Iron stick. The non-braid based updos have a tendency to slip from my style rotation because I'm lazy and would rather not have to redo them into a braid in the evening...

Sunday, 14 August 2016

Work and long hair: Some thoughts on being professional and maintaining your "unique" hair

When it comes to hair in a professional environment, it seems people either believe it needs to be cropped short or kept in a "librarian" type bun. So I'd like to talk a bit about my personal observations and recommendations...

Be aware of your signal value
First of all, you need to realise there is a signal value in what you wear and what you do to your hair.
You want to look professional while maintaining your unique personality. Beware your brand!
That means you should avoid anything that looks "trendy", "young" or something "statement"-looking.

When in doubt, go by the most basic military rule
If your hair is long enough to reach your collar, keep it up and keep it neat!
Definitely avoid the long, flowing hair everywhere. It sends a signal of someone who is more busy with her hair and might want to avoid stuff like faxes, plotters and copy machines, or other things her hair can get stuck in.
I generally find the military regulations for your hair to be very good to follow: Keep your hair clean, contained and neat. Never do purposely messy styles.This also falls under the next rule:

Avoid the obvious trends
So granted, it's highly unlikely that people in an office know or care that the current trend for hair dye is more of a cool purple than a warm burgundy. But, most people will know and recognize those very popular hair trends like the top knot that was everywhere some time ago and the boxer braids that are everywhere now.
Use the "subtle" trends to play around with, flatter your face with or express your personality.
Avoid the trends that people will actually recognize.

Avoid sharp tools
You probably won't come within arms reach from your coworkers except when you stand over someones shoulder to look at the same monitor. But, avoid objects that are obviously pointy or sharp in your hair. A rounded Ron Quattro is good, a pointy stick isn't. It sends a certain signal, even if it's not a safety issue.

Cycle your styles!
One general truth to everyone who isn't in the longhair circuit is that they can't see the difference between near-identical styles. A Celtic knot looks the same as a Chinese bun, which looks the same as a regular Cinnamon bun, which looks the same as a regular Nautilus bun. People just can't tell.
The same goes for coworkers. Wearing too many vaguely different buns can make people think you're frumpy, unkempt or just boring. You want to look like you care about your signal value, not necessarily about your looks.
What people can recognize though, is things like "Today she is wearing two buns, yesterday it was one" or "Today her bun is braided, yesterday it wasn't".
So this is where you can play around with your hair and express your personality.
Try to cycle your styles according to what is obviously different to the uninitiated.

Friday, 12 August 2016

Inositol: Month two

To repeat myself a bit:
Inositol or vitamin B8 or benosine monophosphate is no longer classified as a vitamin because it is synthesized by the human body, just like the other vitamin B's B4 (Adenine) and B7 (Biotin, also known as vitamin H).
It is necessary for hair growth to keep follicles healthy at the cellular level.
Inositol has showed beneficial effect in studies on dermotillomania and other OCD or anxiety issues.

It has now been two months since I started taking inositol and as per the plan, I've been upping the dosage with 1 gram per week. Which means that as I write this, I'm taking 8 gram a day (4 x 2 gram).

And... Yes, I'm seeing an effect.

The last week or two, it has come to my attention that I have two kinds of picking:
  • The conscious one: Something irritates or tickle my skin and when I move to scratch it, it turns into picking if I can get my fingers into something. 
  • The unconscious one: I don't even know I'm picking because my attention is at something else. I don't even notice until I feel blood under my nails. 
The unconscious one is definitely the one I do the most: Maybe 90-95% of the picking happens like this.
My most common trigger for this behavior is when I'm trying to relax in a situation but I'm stressed or mentally occupied by something else. So I unconsciously pick to try to relax myself in the situation.

The last week or two, I haven't caught myself unconsciously picking. Like, at all.
If I do pick unconsciously, I don't pick to a point where I draw blood.

It might not sound dramatic to some of my dear readers, but this is an enormous difference to me. I've struggled with this for at least a decade, and inositol has really helped me.

So I'd like to officially recommend anyone who struggles with OCD and/or anxiety to give this a try.

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

New Nightblooming books coming out soon

The very awesome Melissa of Nightblooming garden is publishing not one, but two new books soon!

Rehabilitating Damaged Hair Naturally: A Guide is coming out on August 30th, 2016, so very soon.

Coloring Hair Naturally with Henna & Other Herbs: A Guide is coming out on September 27th, 2016

Definitely getting this one myself, probably, heheh...

Both books will be available on her the Nightblooming Etsy store.