So after this recent post of mine, it seems some of you wanted to know a few products I liked, things I do or items I keep in my grocery cupboard. I’m so nosy and love reading posts like this (!) so hopefully some of my favourites inspire you to try something new, too. Here goes, some of my beauty secrets:
This isn’t really a secret (because we all know it deep down) but seeing physical results comes down to consistent hard work and perseverance. I mean, I exercise a lot. You don’t see every run or workout of mine on social media, but I’m exercising around 5 times a week. This includes a personal training session, a Sweat1000 session, a yoga class, a 6 or 7km run and then one other bit of cardio, plus walking the dogs. And when I do this exercise, I’m not messing around, I’m trying my absolute hardest and the sweat is dripping off me and I’m catching my breath and my muscles are feeling it. I figure that my time is valuable so I may as well make each workout count.
The other bit (that IS more of a secret) is that as women, we really need to do weights, if we want to tone and tighten. You can run marathon after marathon, and yes this may keep you slim, but if you don’t want floppy arms, you need to be doing some kind of strength training. Us women think weights = body builders but this is not the case, and it’s taken me so long to realise this! And I know personal trainers are not always affordable, so alternatives are picking the right classes at gym, or buying some basic equipment and finding a routine online.
I also know that it comes down to time and I’m lucky that I work for myself and my kids are a bit bigger now. But if it’s really important, you will stop making excuses and you will get up that hour earlier or make a plan.
I think I eat pretty healthily and I have a healthy appetite. I’ve learned to manage portion control a bit better these days, as I used to eat humungous portions! In fact I saw a dietician recently (because I wanted the Vitality points!) and she said that your portion should actually fit inside the inner ring of a dinner plate and not go over the sides of that smaller circle! Also, I know I post a lot of chocolate cakes on Instagram and I do eat slices of that cake, but you know, it’s a relatively small slice.
For breakfast I typically have a smoothie made in our Nutribullet with fruit (banana, frozen berries), some veg (cucumber, spinach or avo), filtered water and a spoon of Wazoogles (that stuff is pricy but very worth it!). It’s such an easy solution and fills me up until around 12. Or I have a boiled egg and these delicious Full ‘o Beans patties you’ll find in health stores.
Dinner is made from scratch every night and we don’t really eat a lot of refined carbs like rice or pasta or bread. We also have about two nights a week where we don’t eat any meat or fish…it’s vegetarian dishes all the way and sometimes even vegan. I’ve learned what my body likes and so I try to give it that.
I’ve ALWAYS cleansed, toned and moisturised, ever since I was a spotty teen and my mom showed my how. I’ve long been a fan of Environ but I’m very lucky to be sent other products regularly to test out, so I do mix it up quite a lot. I also go for facials about every 8 weeks.
I’ve got crappy hair so I spend a decent amount on a good haircut. I think it’s worth more than any outfit.
I don’t wear a lot of make up and this is because I have no idea what I’m doing! However I do like Garnier’s BB cream, a bit of concealer etc for rings and spots, eyebrow pencil (eyebrows are so important as they frame your face), some blusher/bronzer, some eyeliner and I’m done. A swipe of lipstick and voila off we go – the Body Shop makes gorgeous ones called Colour Crush that are also moisturising (I use a lovely pink one that is nice for every day).
And then all the boring ones still apply: I drink a lot of water, try and get adequate sleep (easier said than done if you have little ones!) and I coat on the sunscreen and wear a lot of hats when outdoors (not all at once, usually one hat at one time;).
I don’t actually have many clothes (in fact I saw a group of friends the other night and realised I had worn exactly the same thing the last time I’d seen them haha). I prefer to buy quality and have fewer things – I’ve still got a pair of Kookai black trousers I bought about 12 years ago in London for example.
I buy neutral basics (skinny blue and black jeans, white/black/grey t-shirts, grey/cream chunky cardigans) and dress those up with jewellery or accessories. I’ve learnt what suits my body shape, and what colours suit my face, and what trends I can safely ignore because I’m far too old. I also like sifting through vintage stores (or my mom-in-law’s cupboard!) for quality things that are back in style. For example that outfit below includes a dress a friend was throwing out (thanks Sue!), a handbag that belonged to my Granny, shoes that are also 10-years-old (London) and a newish costume necklace from Woolies.
I’m also not afraid of overdressing at special occasions! Capetonians tend to dress down but I’m like: it’s a special occasion? I’m dusting off my heels and my red lippie and my glitz (must be leftover from my Jozi days;). Life is short, so why not?
This is easier said then done but once you care less about what other people think, and more how you feel about yourself inside, this confidence starts to show on the outside. I’ve made peace with how I look and become comfortable in my own skin and I think this shows. I KNOW myself better – I’m no longer a stranger. I also take time just for myself and try not feel guilty about it. This is my biggest beauty secret and it’s something I’ve only learned with age.
So there you are – a few “beauty secrets” from me. Hope something in there was useful (and I’ll try find other people to interview about this too).