5 Reasons to Work Out (That Have Nothing To Do With How You Look)

I’ve been stuck in a rut recently where I’ve been going to gym and it feels like a chore. In order to motivate myself I came up with some reasons to work out that have nothing to do with how you look. I don’t really care about having that perfect summer body because my summer body is my all-year body and I’m happy with that. I don’t want that to be my only motivation to go to the gym because working out is very important for the general health of your body and six-packs and biceps can’t be all that it’s about right? Keep reading for my top 5 reasons to go to the gym that have nothing to do with how you look.

Challenges You

Working out is a way to set challenges for yourself and a way to compete with a previous version of yourself. Setting targets and working towards them is very good practice for other things in your life like work and personal goals. Also the sense of relief of achieving your goals is a great satisfaction and reward. By making working out into a set of challenges you can become more self-disciplined.

Improves Strength, Stamina and Endurance

Working out can improve you stamina, strength and endurance. Walking up that flight of stairs with time will become much easier and you’ll eventually be able to bring all the grocery bags into the house from the car in one go. Little victories. Also if we continuously work out throughout our life, when we eventually get old (hopefully not for a while) we will be stronger then. Developing good fitness habits can help maintain our health in our old age and keep us healthy at the moment.

Improves Your Mood

Exercising has been known to boost morale and increase your mood. Try working out for 20mins a day and see the difference in how good you feel afterwards. Your body might be in pain but your mind will be on a positive high. IT’s to do with the rush of endorphins in your body and literally makes us joyful. It’s a great stress relief as well and can help to clear your mind and organize your thoughts. Who would’ve thought, exercise, your own personal mental organizer?

Learn About Your Body

You will realise the magnificent things that the body can do. I have gone from only being able to squat 10 reps to being able to squat with a barbell my entire body weight. I was shocked at the progression and realised that over time your body can change can get stronger and can do a lot of things that you wouldn’t realise. If we can give birth to babies imagine what a bit of exercise can do. Knowing that we have the ability to push our bodies to the max is very fulfilling.

Personal Time

Working out is a great way to have some personal time with yourself. Stick on your headphones, maybe a bit of Shakira or Dr Dre, whatever floats your boat, and you are ready to enter your own little world. I feel like going to the gym is the perfect excuse to just have some time to myself and to take a breather from the other priorities in my life. Whether that’s taking a break from your kids or husband, or from studying or a really intense Netflix binge, personal time is important to have. Exercising is a great way to take this time.

reasons to work out that have nothing to do with how you look

So those were 5 reasons to work out that have nothing to do with how you look. Of course, not everyone can go and run mountains or lift weights but that’s the beauty of exercise! You can set your own targets for what suits you and your lifestyle (and let’s not forget that a gym is not a necessity to exercise). A target for one person will not be the same for another. I think that’s why it’s important to work out for reasons that are not just for your physical appearance, because that perfect, “slim-waist, big-booty” or “6-pack, huge biceps” is not attainable for everyone no matter how hard they try.

If you enjoyed reading please leave a comment or message me on Twitter. Do you work out at all? Do you have a particular reason for working out?

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Rejuvenate Your Hair With Mammoth Oils: Review

I won a bottle of oil from Mammoth Oils a while back and have been using it for my natural hair. If you have dry hair or hair that is prone to breakage, then using oils in your hair is the best thing that you can do to solve the problems and retain moistures. Natural oils can transform your dull and lifeless hair into luscious, shiny moisturised locks and help in the development and growth of your hair. Different oils can be used for different things; from strengthening to hydrating. Continue reading for my review on Mammoth Oils and how they help me keep my hair moisturised.

mammoth oils
What’s in it?

Mammoth Oils is a blend of a combination of oils and does not have any harmful chemicals in it. This is great as I like to use natural products on my hair and skin where possible.  A lot of the time chemicals in products don’t stimulate growth or strengthen hair and I’d rather not have chemicals that I can’t even pronounce on my hair or skin. The ingredients are very simple and the natural oils include almond oil, castor oil, argan oil, avocado oil, jojoba oil and olive oil. I have used a lot of these oils by themselves and although they work well, it was nice seeing how much better they work altogether. 

mammoth oils

In my hair routine…

After I wash my hair, I apply the oil to my hair and I make sure I get from the root down to the ends of the strand. After I braid my hair and let the oil sit in my hair. My hair does not retain moisture at all so I don’t need to wash out the oils, I just let it seep into my hair. After my hair has dried, I can notice the difference in my hair. My curls look healthy and my hair is shiny. Most importantly the ends of my hair don’t look like they are going to break and my hair looks strong and rejuvenated. What I love about the bottle is that it comes with a pump. Since I don’t normally have one, the oil can be really messy. However, the pump makes it easier for me to apply the product to my hair.

Overall, I love this product as it has everything I need in one bottle and it very convenient in terms of the pump.

mammoth oils
Do you use any oils in your hair? If you’re interested in checking out Mammoth Oils or have tried them before let me know in the comments or on Twitter.

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OCD and Me #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek

It’s #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek and if there’s a time to talk about mental health issues, the time is now. I have Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and I’ve never really spoken about it because I find it hard to explain to people and I’m a little embarrassed. Do I consider it a disease or an illness no, and I don’t like to say it affects my life, but it does. It’s something I struggle with most moments of the day and I’m so used to it now that it’s like that annoying family member who came to stay at your house but never left.

ocd obsessive compulsive disorder

You probably hear about OCD a lot, with people jokingly proclaiming “oh I’m so OCD” or “oh I’m OCD about so and so”. To be honest I wish OCD worked like that, like it was a feeling that was fleeting or something that is only temporary – but it’s not, it doesn’t work like that. OCD is an anxiety disorder which involves obsessive thoughts and compulsive behaviours. Obsessions can include unwelcome thoughts, images, urges, worries or doubts that repeatedly appear in your mind. Compulsions are repetitive activities that you do to reduce the anxiety caused by the obsession. I’m not the best at explaining things so read about it in more detail if you’ d like.

The illness affects as many as 12 in every 1000 people (1.2% of the population) from young children to adults, regardless of gender or social or cultural background.

ocd obsessive compulsive disorder

My OCD is to do with contamination. Things that I consider dirty or capable of “contaminating” me will trigger obsessive thoughts and compulsions. My obsessive fears tend to be along the lines that a contaminated thing may cause illness, and ultimately death, to a loved one or myself. Something as little as pushing a “dirty” trolley in a supermarket can trigger these thoughts. A bit extreme. A lot annoying. Read more about the different types here.  I used to think I just had weird tendencies or that everyone thought exactly like me when faced with things that could possibly contaminate them. People would laugh at things I would do and the extremes that I would go to in order to avoid contamination. I would laugh to. Of course I was just being silly and my behaviour was illogical. When I came to university – an entire change of scenery and environment, my OCD got more intense and exhausting and I knew that I had to speak to a doctor and check if I was okay. I mean I didn’t have the flu,  my brain was just going into overdrive. At times I would be left with crippling anxiety unable to get out of bed for the fear of being contaminated in some way, shape or form. I would feel helpless, depressed and completely stupid. At this point I had no idea what was wrong and once I went to the doctor I was diagnosed with OCD. Initially, I tried individual therapy and then group therapy. However, for me they were ineffective (sadly) and only reinforced more strongly the illogical thought processes I would go through daily. Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) is the most common form of therapy provided and a lot of it is exposure to your issue and learning to deal with it. For me that was a no no. Trying to navigate university, deal with exam stress and deal with exposure to triggers was not an option for me. After, unsuccessfully trying individual and group therapy, I tried medication. This was the closest to dealing with my OCD but after a bad experience with medication, I completely stopped any form of treatment.

At the moment I just deal with the OCD; when it is manageable and when it is not. I’ve become very savvy at working at when things can trigger it and avoiding those situations; and when those situations are unavoidable I have my own ways of trying to deal with it – coping strategies. I’ve come to accept that I probably won’t be “cured” and I can accept that it’s just a part of me and who I am. I may do things a little differently and I may be a bit weird but I am dealing and coping well so I’m proud of myself. High five me! If you know me IRL, chances are you won’t have even known I have OCD, I’ve probably had a panic attack and you won’t have noticed (unless of course you know and you noticed haha).

ocd obsessive compulsive disorder
In my family mental health issues weren’t really a thing and it’s only recently that I’ve been able to talk about my OCD with my mum. The problem is that it is entirely illogical in nature and so trying to make someone else understand is almost an impossible task. How do you explain something that you don’t really understand yourself. But speaking about it and making an effort to explain has helped my friends and family to support me and has definitely lifted a burden off my shoulders. I don’t feel so much like a weirdo and the more I can understand myself the more I can deal with it and navigate life.

I feel like I haven’t really said a lot but yeah OCD is not just a penchant for neat and organized things. It’s not just you liking to be a neat freak. If I had a pound for the amount of times I roll my eyes when OCD is used as a joke or an adjective, I’d be living in the Bahamas haha. It’s actually really exhausting, draining and affects simple day-to-day tasks. It’s definitely not a cute little quirk – it’s bloody annoying lol. But yeah I’m ending the blog here. I will probably write more about OCD because that was very therapeutic.

Do you know anyone with OCD or have you heard about it before? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter. Feel free to ask me any questions! x

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Mermaid Makeup Brushes (Unicorn Brushes) ONLY £7

Hey guys! Welcome back to Afro Mermaid. My little space on the net. I’m going to be talking about some fabulous new £7 Mermaid Makeup Brushes that I got recently – or Unicorn Makeup Brushes, whichever mythical creature you prefer (and yes I said £7). I do a lot of makeup and so of course I go through a lot of makeup brushes. I’m not the best at washing my brushes so I just buy new ones. I’m not rich I just buy them cheaply! So when I came across these gorgeous brushes, I HAD to have them and I vowed to actually look after them because they are actually works of art. At ONLY £7 how could I not.

mermaid makeup brushes unicorn makeup brushes

The brushes have lovely pearlescent, twisted handles in a pastel lavender colour, with white bristles. You get about 9 different brushes for different parts of your face. In a Kabuki style they are perfect for all your buffing needs and applying product to your face.

The Lovely Mermaid Makeup Brushes Include;

  • A flat-topped foundation brush – powder and liquid foundations
  • A narrow, flat bristled brush for sculpting
  • A fluffy head blush brush – for blending powders
  • A couple of short, flat bristled brush – for brows, details, eyes, concealer
  • A fan brush –  so you can have the BEST highlight
  • A plush, super-soft powder brush – for setting your base
  • A soft, fluffy eyeshadow brush – blend away harsh lines after shadow application
  • A short and stubby  brush – for packing shadow onto the lid
mermaid makeup brushes unicorn makeup brushes

Look at the sea shells and look at the brush handles. TOTALLY MERMAID VIBES

I never actually use makeup brushes for what they’re supposed to be used for but I guess that’s the beauty of makeup – do what you want! I get the vibe of Mermaid Makeup Brushes rather than Unicorn Makeup Brushes because they remind me of sea shells. The brushes are so lovely to look out and they definitely do not look £7. I love shopping the internet for cheaper alternative because most times, you get good quality for a fraction of the price – as you can see here.

mermaid makeup brushes unicorn makeup brushes

I think they are dupes for some other brushes selling at Beauty Bay – if you’d rather pay £45 feel free haha. The head of the brushes are a pretty rose gold colour and they have been sturdy and strong since I’ve been using them. I like the fact that the brush handles are tapered because it means they are much lighter and fit in a lot of makeup bags – perfect for travelling in style.

mermaid makeup brushes unicorn makeup brushes

My favourite brush would have to be the fan highlighter brush. I look fabulous adding the finishing touches at the end of my makeup with the beautiful brush handles. The brushes work well I will most likely be purchasing them again when the time comes. If you want some of these brushes, check out the LightInTheBox website, eBay, Amazon or pay £45 at Beauty Bay.

mermaid makeup brushes unicorn makeup brushes

What do you think of these mermaid makeup brushes? Do you get a mermaid vibe or a unicorn vibe? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter!

 

 

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22 Things I’ve Learnt In 22 Years

It’s my birthday! I’m here with a 22 Things I’ve Learnt In 22 Years post. 22 years old. I remember when I thought 18 was “grown-woman-age”, oh how I was wrong. I feel like I’m reaching that point in your life where birthdays are less exciting and feel more like a day you have to celebrate just to get it over with. 
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