Kegel 8 Ultra 20 Electronic Pelvic Toner || Let's Talk Taboo


I've never been one to shy away from taboo subjects in hope of inspiring or helping others. Today's subject is, of course, the female pelvic floor and the embarrassing and at times painful issues that come with it, especially when it's not toned, fit and healthy. Most people believe that these issues only really happen to older ladies but the reality is they can happen to anyone of any age but, more so to those who have had large babies or multiple pregnancies. 

I myself have had three large baby boys in quick succession (over three years, with my first two being only eleven months apart - shocking I know). My first pregnancy resulted in a double mediolateral episiotomy (two large diagonal cuts through the muscle) and my final pregnancy resulted in a sterilisation twelve weeks after my son's birth. The sterilisation preceded some pretty serious health issues also which of course meant that exercise was out of the question - dammit even walking was out of the question for a while. 

Long story short, my pelvic floor and basically every muscle large and small sucked quite badly. I definitely did see and feel the effects of having a pathetic pelvic floor and I tried to follow the recommended pelvic floor exercises daily. I actually struggled to hold one squeeze for ten seconds and started shaking all over. It was tough! 

Even when I managed to up my manual squeezes to ten for ten seconds I still had issues with my back, stomach and toileting habits. I really think that it's a shame that us ladies can't discuss these topics, don't you? Especially given how many of us will suffer from varying degrees of this over the course of our life? How are we supposed to know what to do unless we talk to each other, find out each other tried and tested methods and support each other?


Symptoms of weakened Pelvic Muscles Include...

♥ Bladder Leaks | Coughing, sneezing and even jumping can result in embarrassing leaks. 
♥ Constipation & Straining | When the muscles are loosened things aren't held in as they should, this causes 'kinks' which can stop the poop from travelling down the normal route. 
♥ Tampons Not Working Perfectly | Again this may be due to looser muscles or prolapses altering the shape so the tampon can't sit as snug as is needed. 
♥ Pot Belly // When your muscles aren't tight your belly sticks out, this may make it look like you've put on weight as your muscles separate and poke outwards. 
♥ Lower Back Ache | This may feel worse around your cycle also, it can be debilitating for some. 
Trapped Wind That's Uncontrollable | Yup it's true, wind may accidentally slip out causing embarrassment. 
♥ Lack of Sensations or Pain | This really needs no explanation, the sensation can be lost in the vaginal walls if your pelvic floor area is looser, similarly, some ladies experience pain from having a prolapse. 
♥ Constantly Needing to Visit The Loo | When things are looser it can push down on your bladder and other organs, this increases the sensation of 'needing to go' even if you've just been to the toilet. This alone can stop ladies from getting a good sleep, affects work and confidence. 
♥ Prolapse (Bulging into the Vagina) | This will look like a lump or bulge that pokes into the vaginal area, this bulge worsens when pushing on the toilet for example. 
♥ Increased Vaginal Discharge | When everything is been pushed on the body naturally increases lubrication to protect itself. 

Typically the pelvic floor muscles are weakened when they are stretched - being constipated, pregnancy, heavy lifting, health problems that lead to severe coughing or sneezing; weight gain and also hormonal changes can lead to overstretching and greatly affect this area. That's why many older ladies suffer once the menopause hits. 

Also if you don't exercise that area then your age won't stop it from happening; you can be young, never having had any pregnancies, have a healthy BMI and no hormonal issues but the area will still slacken because it's not being worked or being put to use. 

The Kegel8 Ultra 20 Machine works in a couple of ways, it comes with both a probe and electrode pads. The probe works by being inserted into the vagina and gets straight to the problem area by toning the muscles and tightening up the pelvic floor. If you can't use the probe or even need an extra boost then you can apply the four sticky electrode pads to your stomach, back, legs or basically anywhere that may need firming, toning or pain relief as it works in a similar way to a TENS machine. 

The unit allows you to run two things at once on different programmes - for example, you can run the probe at a very low beginners programme and the electrodes at a higher programme say for pain relief. I've tried a few programmes now and initially, I was really scared (having previously tried Slendertone machines that zap you *eek*) but the Ultra 20 doesn't hurt whatsoever. You can set it up and clip the unit to your trousers or belt and go about your day (in the house at least) as normal - I'm now happily on a 40MA (power and strength, this level really work your muscles) for around 45 minutes per day. I have used the pads alone for my stomach (to help cramps) and my back (to help backache). 

While I've only been using this for a few days I will be using this daily for the recommended twelve weeks so will be reporting back regularly on how well it's performing. It's important for me to really let you know the pro's and con's because (hopefully) this works in every aspect and can help others in a similar situation, there's nothing worse than having to alter your life or being too embarrassed to discuss this with your doctor. 

There are lots of products on the market to help improve this situation but my opinion was that an electronic product allows you to really customise your exercise to suit your personal tone and needs. Honestly I'm much more likely to use an electronic anything than a manual when it comes to exercise and yes that includes intimate exercises, if you're similar or have issues relating to a weakened pelvic floor you may want to check out Kegel 8's range of electronic and manual products (for men and ladies) you can do so by visiting the Kegel 8 website.

I understand that this might be out of the price range for some people, however, there are cheaper alternatives on the market. The following pelvic toners are reviewed highly, but I personally cannot vouch for them as I haven't tried them, so you should try them out.



Ladies let's not make this subject taboo any longer! Girl Power! 

Edit: OK so I used this machine daily for months. I used it with a variety of settings and found that I was starting to notice the benefits from around the 2-3 week mark. After 4-6 weeks of, use I found I could even manually hold a kegel without the pain, awkwardness and shaking. Now that it's been nearly two years since I originally published this review I can wholeheartedly say that this machine makes a difference, you need to also put in the work and use it as recommended but, if you do your pelvic floor will thank you. 


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Click List || Twelve Things That Had Me Clicking

This beautiful buttercream cake tutorial by Coco Cake Land makes me want to be a better baker. Or photographer. I really don't care how good or bad this tastes because it makes my eyes happy. 

Ballet dancer Sergei Polunin dancing to Take Me To Church is incredible. You will have to watch this at least three times purely because the first two times you will be distracted from his incredible danc... erm, package. By the third time you'll come to appreciate his amazing ballet skills. 

Butterfly Twists have hit my radar and I absolutely adore these silver Samantha flats, I love the light and airy ballerina styles and the fact that these fold up makes me want them even more for my work handbag. 

Fountain - The Energy Molecule and the Fountain range of supplements in general have me clicking a lot lately. I am a big supplementation fan [in the right situations] and the aims of the products are exactly what I need in my life right now. The Energy Molecule intrigues me, as an autoimmune sufferer I need energy in the bucket loads - the only thing stopping me from hitting purchase is the taste. I really want to know how nice this tastes before buying. Does anyone know? 

Real Technique have just launched the prettiest makeup brushes in 2015 and I still adore them. Their Bold Metals collection consists of functional makeup brushes in rose gold, gold tone and silver tones - and - I want them all! I have my eyes on the triangle foundation brush, chubby cheek brush and slanted brush. They will be mine someday. 

Yup another Design Love Fest wallpaper has hit the click list. I can't get enough of her amazing designs and actually have my favourites on three minute rotation on my laptop. 
Bill Skinner March Hare Earrings - and - Bill Skinner everything has me going ga-ga. I adore his kooky style and have fallen head over heels in love with everything bunny and hare shaped on his website. Price wise they're so achievable. 

Max Schneider recently signed with DCD2 in 2015 and went onto launch Puppeteer. I am in love. The dance moves, the song and the video. If I'm being honest this guy maybe my perfect guy - other than my husband of course. 

Rose and Hibiscus D.I.Y scrub tutorial looks so easy to make and I can imagine how lush this must be to use. 

Free People Get Off My Cloud bra. I adore wireless bras and this is so sexy yet feminine in a non sexy way if that makes sense. I have small boobs so this is perfect for me. 

Amy Sia watercolour cushion is expensive. It's more splurge than anything else but I really adore this watercolour pattern and know it's a pattern that never goes out of style. 

SLOW Watch in gold tone had me feeling all giddy. I love the one hand concept too, you should definitely check them out. I'm unsure where to purchase from but I so badly want this watch in particular. 

What's had you clicking recently? 

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The Clever Methods For Losing Weight

If you are ken to lose weight, and you don’t know where to begin, then this article should help you. In today’s post, we are going to look at some of the things that you can do to ensure that you lose weight as fast as possible. No matter who you are, you will find that all of these are viable options, and some of them are even immediate. Losing weight can be a struggle for anyone, which is why it is such a good idea to make sure that you know your options before you get into it. Without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the best losing weight options which abound today.

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Gastric Bypass Surgery

If you have struggled to lose weight for a long time, then this could be something that you really benefit from. With a gastric bypass surgery, you will immediately lose a considerable amount of weight, and you will also be set up physically to continue losing weight more easily than ever before. Although not the first option for many people, this is an increasingly common way to lose weight, and it is definitely worth considering if you are serious about losing weight in a timely manner. There will probably be many questions that you want to ask, such as do you still need to gastric bypass surgery after gastric bypass surgery? If you are wondering whether one is enough or not, then asking your surgeon that question is probably a wise idea. Make sure you are prepared before you do this - but as long as you are, you might be delighted with the results.

Prioritise Real Foods

If you are ken on just changing up your diet in order to lose some weight, then it will help if you know exactly what methods to use in order to make the most of it. One of the best pieces of advice in this respect is to prioritise real, whole foods in your daily diet. Doing so makes it much easier and quicker to lose a considerable amount of weight - and that’s not to mention the many other health benefits that you are likely to experience as a result of this. Go for whole, fresh foods every time, and you will soon lose all the weight you want.

The Occasional Coffee

Believe it or not, having a cup of coffee every day can work wonders for your weight loss attempt. If you don’t believe it, it is well worth looking into. Coffee does many things for your system, but one which is important here is that it is a natural diuretic, meaning that it helps you lose weight. On top of that, it is an excellent antioxidant, and that will cause a considerable difference which you will notice as well. Although you don’t want to overdo it on coffee, having one or even two a day can really be good for you, and it will make your weight loss much easier.


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Clearing Up Eyesight Once And For All


Ah, the eyes. For such an important organ, they are very annoying! Once upon a time, they would never forsake you, but now they let you down all of the time. The frustrating part is that everyone needs them to see. Yes, as you well know, they are pretty essential to everyday life. So, the time has come to clear them up and sharpen your vision. With that in mind, here is a range of techniques that you might want to consider. From surgery to the Au Naturale method, this list covers every base.

Laser Eye Surgery

Let’s start with the elephant in the room. No matter how bad your eyes are, the idea of surgery won’t seem too appealing. The reason for this is the horror stories that circulate like a bad smell. ‘I went for an operation and couldn’t see for weeks afterwards!' The reality is that this only happens to a tiny percentage of people. Just take a quick look at the lasik eye surgery frequently asked questions list and you’ll find that most people recover in a matter of days. You’ll also notice that their vision tends to be better than ever before. Of course, you shouldn’t go under the knife if you feel uncomfortable, which is why you need to analyse the pros and cons.

Prescription Glasses

Is the surgery a no-go? So, it’s time to get a pair of glasses. No, not the £1.50 pair of glasses that you bought from the corner shop. What you need is a set of prescription glasses because they are tailor made. If you’re minus 3, for example, the strength of the lenses will be the same or higher. Also, the optometrist can figure out whether you’re long-sighted or short-sighted, and tweak the glasses to aid your vision. There is no doubt that they are expensive, but they are worth the cost.

Natural Improvements

Just because you have a pair of glasses doesn’t mean that you are fine. Your vision with the glasses might be okay, but it still isn’t the same as seeing unaided. And, there will be times when you won’t have your specs on hand, so you will have to rely on your natural vision. Thankfully, there are ways to improve eyesight without going under the knife. Eye exercises are among the most popular technique today as they are easy and efficient. All it takes is for you to roll your eyes (not like that!) for ten to fifteen minutes a day to keep them strong. The key is to do it every day without any interruptions.

Give Them A Rest

Eyes don’t get the same treatment as other muscles and organs. When your back hurts, you lie down to ease the pain. When your eyes get tired, you continue them using them like it’s normal. Well, it isn’t normal because they need a rest like every other part of your body. Staring at a computer screen or straining at the TV only makes things worse, so close your eyes or look away. It is a small difference, but it is effective.

Hopefully, these tips will help you sharpen up your vision and improve your lifestyle.


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10 Things You Need To Realise Before You're 30


1. You'll never have it all. Learn to take care of what you have and you'll soon learn that it's all you ever needed anyway.

2. Everyone's different. Don't try to change other people's viewpoints as you'll just be wasting your time. Learn to accept or keep shtum.

3. Stop blaming others. Being accountable for your own life is the best thing you can do for yourself.

4. No is a sentence. You don't need to justify it with an answer.

5. There will always be someone who doesn't like you or what you do or someone who makes life a little tougher - there's nothing you can do to change that. Accept it, get on with your own life happily and confidently.

6. At thirty, you'll still not have your shit together but you become better at acting as though you do.

7. You're going to be surrounded by critics, don't be your worst one.

8. Your only limitations are those in your mind and are not those set by your age.

9. You need to get over your allergy of ''exercise'' pull up your big girl panties and get it done.

10. Relationships need to be a partnership. If you're constantly complaining that your other half doesn't do x, y or z consider... do you? Is everything you do in the relationship for yourself? When was the last time you did x, y or z to help your partner just because YOU cared and didn't want something in return?



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Build to Last: Durable Home Renovations

There’s nothing worse than feeling like you have to constantly change the styles in your home. There’s nothing worse still than being forced to do so because the renovation that took place in the first place wasn’t built to last. If these are plights that are all too common in your life then rest assured that there are ways to fight them. Below are a few ways you can treat your home to a renovation that will last.


First of all, when building to last, you need to choose appliances and floors that will do just that. You need to bring appliances and floors into your home that have a proven record of durability. GRP composite residential bathroom pods, for instance, are a worthy fit if longevity is what you’re after the next time you want a change-up in your bathroom. Bathrooms are more susceptible than most to general wear and tear. But if you choose one like the GRP the waterproof bunded floors will go a long way to protect against such a plight. Similarly, the kitchen is another room in the house that faces the plight of wear and tear each day. To fight this you should turn to the longevity of hardwood flooring. By laying your kitchen with this type of floor you are not only laying it for use now, but you are laying it for use for years and years to come. Just don’t be too hasty to walk on it with your bare feet on cold winter mornings!

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But it’s not all about the durability of the appliances that you bring in. A lot of renovations need redoing at a later date simply because they go out of style. Because of this it is important to take into account the styling trends of the modern world. Granted, it is pretty impossible to be able to tell what will and will not be in style in five years time. There are however ways to work around this; you can do so by choosing neutral colours. Think about it, when have neutral colours ever not been in fashion? And, surprisingly, you can use neutral colours in a number of ways to accentuate a room. You can use them as a background for wall decor. You can use them to work alongside your furnishings. There are a whole host of ways you can use neutrals to your advantage. And not only will they accentuate your interior design in the present, but they will undoubtedly continue to do so for years to come. If that’s not a good investment, then what is? When it comes to your home and your money risks should never be taken and adorning your walls in bright colours is a risk, despite how ‘in’ they are now. Neutral colours however remain in fashion wherever the weather.

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The next time you renovate your home make sure to take heed of the advice above. Well, that’s if you want to live in a home that not only works now, but one that works in the future too.


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Skincare Woes || Beating The Acne Beast


Regardless of your age acne can completely tear away any confidence you may have. As a teenager I had the odd monthly outbreak but it eventually faded away around the age of fifteen. I never imagined that I'd be suffering from acne as an adult and I never knew how tough it would be to get it under control. When I was a teenager I believed that eating junk and poor skincare was what caused acne to break out, fat in so fat out basically. I remember seeing others with acne and thinking 'why don't they just wash more or take care of their skin', I was so naive.

So how exactly do you get rid of acne? Well that all depends on your cause to be honest. Acne can be caused by hormones, incorrect grooming, allergies and medical conditions. My case was a mixture of them all and I tried anything and everything that was suppose to 'cure' acne. Most just stripped the skin, others left horrendous marks or worsened the conditions. Many were just overly hyped brands and left a hefty dent in my purse. The only thing I did find in the beginning to work was antibiotics but then the relief was only temporary, as soon as the antibiotics stopped the boils, pimples and carbuncles would return leaving me feeling so deflated. I realised I had to find some other way to get control over my skin without relying on the antibiotics.

Acne is made up of four features which includes increased seborrhoea (oil) which is stimulated by androgen's, hyperkeratinization which is a buildup of dead skin cells within the hair follicle due to the keratin not leaving the follicle, obstruction of the hair follicle and then inflammation due to the increase of bacteria such as propionibacterium acne. it's important to ensure you take care of your skin to stop the buildup of oils and bacteria as well as reducing any scarring - hormones play a huge part so tackling the cause of the hormonal irregularities is important in beating the acne beast and then changing your lifestyle is a must because that last thing anyone wants once they get it under control is to find it rears it's ugly head again.

Having trialled and reviewed so many products, diets, lotions and potions it's fair to say I've become a bit of an acne snob. Most overly-hyped products didn't make a dent in my condition and I found that stripping back my skincare routine to the very basics was enough to make the biggest change. In the morning I'd wash with a wet sponge, really ensuring I'd washed thoroughly. I didn't use soaps, cleansers, toners or any 'product' as most were playing a huge part in washing away good bacterias which would then lead to my skin over producing oils to compensate.

After washing with water, I'd apply a good cream. Even with boils and pimples you still need hydration because the skin can become blocked due to being dehydrated even if it doesn't look or feel that way. At night I followed a similar routine except I applied a mask that doubled as a gentle scrub to really pull out the crap from my pores that build up during the day and then applied more cream to hydrate. After work I always take my makeup off with water and a sponge and that-is-it because I want to allow my skin to breathe and heal.

To deal with the issue of hormones I started supplementing. Understanding how hormones work and making changes to your life based on your symptoms is necessary - I started adding good fats to my diet (butters etc) and noticed that really benefited my digestive system (Google Bulletproof Diet or Paleo) and in doing so my thyroid fell back into the normal range for the first time in years. Because acne can be linked to poor digestion, blocked sinuses and bacterias, washing your hands and being aware of how infection is spread is so important, yes that means washing your hands more than normal and yes it means keep those dirty digits away from your face. The bacteria that lives in your nose and sinus cavity is the same bacteria that worsens [or causes] acne to grow and spread.

It's taken a while to curb the outbreaks - but - I've finally gotten to the stage where I'm almost clear. I doubt I'll ever go back to a product laden and fussy skincare routine purely because I know that played a huge part in worsening the condition overall. As for my diet I prefer to eat real foods where possible. I eat good chocolate in moderation, I drink good coffee in moderation, I eat butter daily and always a spoonful over any veggies I have (vegetables are fat soluble) and I eat meats, potatoes and other hearty, filling foods. Digestion is the bodies HQ, if that's out of whack then everything else is including your hormones so changing your eating habits is the first thing you can do to mend your acne.

Here's what products I use daily.




Supplements that I use include:

Diindolylmethane || This can be found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower and it works by balancing estrogen's and estrogen metabolism. Estrogen and DiiM look similar at molecular level and both are poorly soluble in water. When you take DiiM with food it encourages it's own metabolism which then promotes healthy estrogen metabolism which is exactly what's needed if you suffer from estrogen dominance, PMS, Perimenopause, actual menopause and yes... acne.

DiiM's also recommended for those who have a higher risk of breast cancer, DiiM helps to reduce 16-hydroxy estrogens which is the bad estrogen as it acts like a 'super estrogen'. This naughty estrogen if left to build up can result in mutations, growths, increased risk of breast cancer, estrogen dominant obesity, estrogen dominance as a whole (pesky and hard to control let me tell you that) and Insulin resistance and no-one wants that as it's an entirely different beast.

I use the Swanson Ultra branded capsules which contain 100mg of DiiM and I take one per day although the bottle states you can take between one and three, I believe you should start slow and work your way up so your body adjusts. I would feel happy recommending these as normally I'm quite sensitive to supplements and prescription medications but I had absolutely no negative side effects from these what-so-ever.

In the morning I use:

Skin Shop's Silver Cream || This cream contains colloidal silver which is antibacterial as well as anti-inflammatory - in other words it's perfect for acne, spots and slow healing skin. It's so gentle once applied and is more lotion like than cream like. This works in perfect harmony with the Salcura also as I tend to apply them every other day just to keep my skin flora balanced and in harmony.

Salcura Zeoderm (zeolite) || The active ingredient is zeolite which is a micronised volcanic rock  and is beneficial because it's a major antioxidant, glucose absorbent, hydrophilic (draws water to itself) and is antibacterial. This cream lasts all day and works as a great skin base, especially if you're planning on wearing makeup - because it's thicker than other lotions and creams or at least has a waxy-velvety feel once applied. I only apply this every second day as I don't want to put my skin out of balance.

Night time I use:

Boots Tea Tree, Witch Hazel and Charcoal Face Mask || This is absolutely incredible! If you've ever tried Glamglow and felt it's amazing but pricey benefits then you'll be glad to know the amazing ingredient in Glamglow is in this product - and - it's about £45 cheaper. Activated charcoal is super absorbent and works by pulling out the oil, debris and toxins from your pores. It's gentle on the skin and really works. I apply the mask, wash my hair and once the mask has dried in I dampen it then using circular motions wash it off as a scrub.

Skin Shop's Silver Cream || As above.



I know it's not the most exciting skincare routine but it works. If you have sensitive skin or allergies also then rest assured you should be fine with this routine too. 



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The Big Baby Decisions


So, you’re thinking about having a baby? Parenthood may well be one of the most rewarding things we can do, but it’s also petrifying. That’s especially true when the baby is a concept, rather than a reality. It’s not as easy as you might think to say yes to getting pregnant. Instead, you may reach the stage where you hope it just happens. That would at least save you having to make a decision. The first thing to bear in mind is that no one ever feels ready. Being a parent is a grey area before you do it, and we’re always afraid of the unknown. But, if you can’t get babies out of your head, you may need to bite the bullet. One thing’s sure; you won’t regret it once it happens. We’re going to look at a few of the things any parent wannabe can consider to help ease them into the decision.

CONSIDER THE COST

One of the primary reasons for holding back is
cost. Babies aren’t cheap. In fact, the financial implications of having a child are extreme. It’s worth mentioning that most of us don’t believe we can afford a child until we do it. When pregnancy happens, we make do and find the money we need. But, if the financial side of things is putting you off, it could help to think about the costs. Getting a good idea of the money you’ll need is the best chance you have of finding it. You may find that the expenses are more than you expect. If that’s the case, plan how you would make your finances stretch. Or, you may find that the costs would be less than you’re thinking. Either way, getting an idea will help you choose.

ARE YOU IN THE BEST HEALTH?

It’s also important to consider your health when thinking about a baby. Many of us worry about the strain pregnancy will have on our bodies. It’s important to know you’re in the best health possible when you start trying. You don’t have to visit a doctor to find out. You could download a
Dr App, and talk things through with a professional. They’ll be able to assess your current situation and give you pointers on how to improve. It’s also worth cutting out bad habits now, while you have the chance. Giving up smoking will be harder when you’re stressed about your pregnancy. Instead, get ahead of the game by giving up ahead of time.

THE WORK SIDE OF THINGS

Many people worry about how to make working work for them when a baby comes along. During maternity leave, things should be easy to handle. But, that will be over before you know it, and then what? The best way to get a grip on the issue is to talk to other working couples who have babies. Find out how they fit their work around their child and consider whether it would be possible for you to do the same.



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