This week's guest blogger is the brilliant Angela Collier: regular writer for glossy publication Ayrshire Magazine, Vegan Mum and all-round lovely lady!
On your marks…get set…glow! That sums up my feelings towards living a vegan lifestyle.
I started my journey nearly two years ago and have felt nothing but benefits since. One of the most positive physical effects I have felt is on my skin. For someone who is nearly 40, I am STILL being challenged for ID when I pick up vodka for all important end-of-the-day V&Ts (I have two kids and work full time, I totally deserve them!) I’ll admit being asked for ID is partly due to the under 25 policy and good genes (thanks Mum and Dad), but it’s also down to a genuine natural glow from eating a vegan diet. Break-outs are a thing of the past and dry patches around my nose and between my brows are nothing but a memory. Even my husband, who is a vegan convert, has noticed huge paybacks. The dry patches on his arms and dandruff (apols to my other half for outing his previous flakiness) have reduced hugely. I put all of this down to the removal of dairy from our diets and the anti-inflammatory perks of veganism on the body.
As a recent vegan, I had to learn a lot in the early days of transitioning to this new way of living and I’m still learning now. As the big 4-0 looms on the horizon on me, I’m genuinely interested in making dietary tweaks to eat my way to the best complexion I can get. Even as a youngster I was interested in skin care and vividly remember buying my first moisturiser from the Body Shop (vitamin E cream anyone?) Now I’m trying to make sure that I try to improve my skin from the inside and out. So where I once slathered my skin in vitamin E cream, now I try to eat my vitamins instead.
Switching to vegan living has been SO easy as there are so many vegan options now and many great meat replacement products.
However, this means it’s never been easier to be an unhealthy vegan (burger, cheese, chips and mayo anyone?) This is great for the kids as they till eat ‘chicken nuggets’, ‘pulled chicken’ and ‘burgers’ at home, but not so good for me if I’m feeling lazy! So whilst I do lapse into lazy eating sometimes, I know I feel much better when I eat colourful, whole foods and also it means I get curious colleagues wishing to try my food when I bring it into the office (for the record, chickpea curry has been the greatest success to date.)
So, when I am thinking about eating for my skin, what do I eat? Going back to my teen vitamin E cream roots means I now seek out more avocados, good oils, nuts and seeds (top tip, milled flax seeds are amazing in home baking as an egg replacement) and lots more pulses. This way I feed my skin vitamin E from the inside out. Also, I try to eat the rainbow as much as possible to get vitamin A and anti-oxidants into my diet. Bright, colourful fruit and veg equal bright skin in my experience.
One thing I definitely don’t want to look is tired. So it’s crucial that I make sure I am getting the all-important B12 vitamin. As veganism becomes more mainstream, the questions about my B12 levels come in a close second now to the inevitable ‘where do you get you protein?’ question. B12 is critical for a number of processes in the body (like nervous system function and energy conversion from food) and is hard to get from foods of non-animal origin. However, vegan products like milk and cereal are fortified with it, or you can take a supplement. Also, you can liberally sprinkle nooch on EVERYTHING to get B12. I had my levels checked at the GP recently and they were perfect, so I must be doing something right!
Now that I have got my diet en pointe, it’s time to get the external skincare regime sorted out.
I’ve invested time educating myself in the benefits of a natural approach to my skin through diet, so the obvious next step for me is to invest in products that are equally natural and cruelty free. I want to use products that I can be confident are free of nasty or harsh chemicals, that haven’t been tested on animals and it’d be amazing if even the packaging could benefit the environment by being recycled or recyclable. My entry point for veganism was environmental (if you haven’t seen ‘Cowspiracy’, please do) and so I am keen to minimise any waste for the benefit of the planet. With two small people running around my house like LUNATICS, I’m acutely aware that I want to be part of a movement that wants to be gentler to the planet for their future.
So how lucky was I to find White Rabbit Skincare? Reading their ‘about us’ section on their website resonated with so much of my own feelings and their products looked amazing. Whilst I want great, natural products, I still love a luxe look and they have it nailed! Having just completed a no/low-spend month, I have a feeling I’m about to splurge on some new skincare products with them. The olive AND avocado cell renewal serum speaks to my soul. Not only do I get to eat avocados and olive oil, but there is a product based on them that will help me on my skin care quest! I can’t wait to get started on experimenting with all their products and you shouldn’t wait either. See you all back here soon with amazing, glowing, ID-requiring skin. Get your glow on!
You can find Angela regularly posting on her two instagram accounts:
- one_tired_mutha (for Mum/Vegan posts!)
- your_words_count (new business account!)