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Friday, 30 September 2016

In Retrospect | September 2016

I'm not going to go on about how fast this year is going - we all know, it's kind of terrifying, let's not dwell on it hey!? September has been a funny old month for me, and there seems to have been loads going on, so let's have a little look back...
September in Retrospect
I think I've done alright with empties this month - it's not my best month ever by a long shot, but I've finished off a couple of those kinds of products that seem to last forever, which is nice.
Will Repurchase: Garnier SkinActive Micellar Oil-Infused Cleansing Water | I mentioned this in my Summer Skincare Routine post and I'm still loving it to remove my make-up in the evening before a proper cleanse. It smells lovely, works well on waterproof mascara and doesn't sting my eyes at all. I've already started a new bottle of this! // The Body Shop Chocomania Body Butter | Okay so I won't be repurchasing this exact scent (I'm gutted they've discontinued it!) but I love The Body Shop's body butters and always have at least a couple in my stash - they're perfect for keeping my sensitive, eczema-prone skin happy.
Might Repurchase: Dr Organic Tea Tree Shampoo | I did like this but didn't love it - it's perfectly nice as shampoos go, and it's SLS-free so it doesn't irritate my skin, but I don't think it's ideal for my super-oily scalp. // Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask | This is definitely a favourite for me, but I do think it's expensive. There are other masks I need to finish off before I buy anything new, and there are others I want to try before I think about repurchasing this one, but there's a good chance it'll end up back in my collection at some point! // Forever Aloe Scrub* | Again, I really liked this but feel like it's quite pricey - I've got other, similar products to finish up and others I want to try before I'd buy this again - but I would consider it in the future.
Won't Repurchase: Naked Volume Body Building Shampoo | This was the last of my stockpiled bottles and to be honest I'm quite glad to see the back of this - I used to love it but I feel like my hair got used to it or something, it just didn't seem as effective the last couple of bottles. // Nivea Anti-Perspirant Invisible for Black & White | I bought this for packing in carry-on luggage and have been keeping it my work bag - it was alright for freshening up after a long day, but I wouldn't depend on it as an anti-perspirant.

Samples Sachets.
I've only used a couple of sample sachets this month - I just haven't really thought about it! It's better than nothing though, so here's what I thought...
Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Lemon Sage Thickening Shampoo | I got this as part of a FeelUnique Pick 'N' Mix selection (Side note: I think this is a great idea!) and wouldn't have chosen it if I'd realised it contained SLS. I quite liked it but wouldn't buy the full-size for that reason (£15.25/300ml here) // Bioderma Nodé Non-Detergent Fluid Shampoo | Another one from the FeelUnique Pick 'N' Mix - I liked the idea of this and quite enjoyed the fluid texture - it was literally like water - but didn't really feel like it did much for my hair, unfortunately. (£8.50/200ml here).

September Goals.
Keep up running twice a week. Well shin splints put paid to this one! I've basically had to take three weeks off running altogether, which has been rubbish - I'm only just starting to get back into it, breaking myself in gently with short half-mile runs to begin with. I need to build back up slowly and get better at stretching/warming up properly.
Join the gym. I just haven't got round to this - I think I know where I'm going to join but I don't understand the pricing options on the website so I need to go in and ask - which just hasn't happened yet. I'll carry this one into October I think, as it is definitely something I need to do.
No chocolate. I'm pretty bloody proud of this, especially as it was my birthday this week! I was actually on a training day with work on my birthday and there was a huge tub of Cadbury's Heroes... and I resisted. I'm aiming for Christmas with the no chocolate thing and I have to admit, it's getting easier as the days go on...
See friends at least twice. In September I've managed a night out at the pub with Warrior friends in Scotland, a couple of evenings in with my best friend, a pub quiz night (we didn't win. Now there's a surprise!) and a late-night walk with another friend. Not a bad month, all in all!
Finish the month at least £1000 from the bottom of my overdraft. I did reasonably well here, actually finishing less than £900 from the bottom - result! This has been a long process but I finally feel like the end is in sight in terms of paying this off, and it's very satisfying that I'm paying less in interest each month now.
Have a haircut. ...I tried! My hairdresser has rather inconsiderately been away, so the first appointment I could get was early October - I'm booked in and dreading it but it's long overdue so I'm going to have to suck it up and deal with it!

September Loves.
Kristina at Creepers & Cupcakes posted about five blogging rules she breaks all the time - which was a lovely, relatable read! There can be a lot of pressure in the blogging world about the "right" ways to do things, and it's important to remember every now and then that the right way for you is your way.
Twenty Something Meltdown Pros & Cons of Adulting
If you haven't noticed I've got a massive girl crush on Gwennan yet then, well, take this as written notice. Her Pros & Cons of Adulting post really hit home with me - although I'm not sure why her 'Pros' list is so long, the only plus point I can think of is eating cake for lunch?
Hourglass Surreal Light
Jamie posted some swatches and her first impressions of the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit in Surreal Light which looks bloomin' gorgeous - there's no way I can justify £69 on it but I'll totally be living vicariously through Jamie when she gets her palette.
My options for favourites amongst my own posts are pretty limited this month, but I was pleased with my write-up of Viktor & Rolf's new perfume launch, Bonbon Couture, and I really enjoyed writing my somewhat tongue-in-cheek post about Ten Things Every Blogger Wishes They Could Do, so do check those out if you get chance!

September In Summary.
We sadly said goodbye to my Gran at the beginning of the month - at the ripe old age of 92, she went into hospital and never came home. We had a lovely family funeral service and then a larger memorial service which felt fitting; she had a good send-off. Myself and three of my cousins (my Gran had four children and eight grandchildren!) were coffin-bearers, which was quite emotional but I'm glad I did it - I hope we did her proud. RIP Gran ♥
It feels weird to follow that up with anything else, but there's actually been a lot going on this month! We had the final Total Warrior weekend of the year, up in Edinburgh, which was a lot of fun as always. I volunteered both days and camped for two nights on my own, which I was a little bit nervous about, but it was actually a lot of fun and definitely something I'd do again. It helped that the campsite was less than half a mile from this gorgeous beach!
North Berwick Beach
The weekend after, I took my boyfriend to see McFly in Glasgow - he seems reluctant to admit it, but I know he loved it! I got very emotional and a bit teary-eyed at a few songs, but it was amazing to see them again - I think this was the tenth time I've seen them and I swear they get better every time.
A photo posted by Jess Smith (@jesssrawr) on
I'm two months into my new job now, which has gone very quickly! I'm loving it, though, it really feels like what I want to be doing, and it's so good to finally feel like I'm on the way to somewhere career-wise. I've had so many opportunities already, most of which have majorly challenged my comfort zones - but I think I've risen to the challenge so far and I'm quite proud of myself!
What have you been up to in September? I'd love to hear the best thing about your month!

[*Product provided for consideration.]


  1. What an amazing month you have had - I can't believe you went a month without chocolate though, that is incredible (I think I'm pretty much addicted personally lol).

  2. Jam packed month it was for you. High five for going without chocolate. Mine is second month without chocolate. How brave am I :D

  3. Sounds like there was loads going on this month! The McFly gig sounds fun, I remember seeing them at Party in the Park years ago and they were really good then. So sorry to hear about your Gran too. x #monthlyloves

  4. No chocolate?! Congratulations. Well done with the overdraft too, it's so easy to use those money, I think everybody does that.

  5. Aw I am sorry to hear about your Gran but well done with the no chocolate! Id never manage that x

  6. I'm sorry to hear about your gran. My husband had shin splints, it wasn't any fun!

  7. This is a great post! It's such a good idea to reflect on the month! I'm sorry to hear about your gran though!

  8. I keep hearing about this micellar water but have yet to try it. I should probably do so soon.

  9. Wow you have had a really busy month. So sorry to read about your gran. Thanks for linking up with #monthlyloves

  10. September seemed to be a month of catching up on work after the school holidays, but did get to some lovely events and parties too.

  11. Wow, that was a busy moth. I'm sorry to read about your Gran. That's really sad.


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