Sunday, 10 June 2018

My Dad the Explorer - Map Gifts for Father's Day

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...


For the first time this year, my Dad is no longer here to wish a Happy Father's Day to. Although, to be honest, I can't remember the last time I actually physically saw my Dad on Father's Day - apart from the customary phone call or Facetime - because he was never in the country!! Even so, the run up to Father's Day has been a little tough this year, but I couldn't not get in on Maps International's #MapsforDad theme. My dad was quite the globetrotter!

So, my content this year is a little trip down travel memory lane, and might also provide some Father's Day Gift inspiration for those shopping for a Travel-Mad Dad...

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...
A Pin for every Memory

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...

My parents actually have their own Personalised Classic Map Pin-board by Maps International, which my brother and I chipped in and bought for my Mum's birthday, following their epic trip to Australia, Singapore and Hong Kong in 2016 (which was a huge tick off their bucket list). Since they both retired, my parents have been relentless, unstoppable travellers, and they had the best time going over the map and sticking pins in every country they've visited during their years together. They've covered a lot of ground between them!

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...
A Singapore Sling at the Famous Raffles Hotel
My Dad had many happy travel memories. Among the ones he would talk about most were celebrating Australia Day in Sydney with cousins, visiting Bob Marley's House in Jamaica, cruising in Cape Verde, and returning time and time again to Taurito, Gran Canaria, which my mum and I actually visited together in April this year for some quiet time and reflection (you can read more about our trip to Mogan, Gran Canaria here). It was the only place Dad had said he wanted to go this year, so we had to make that happen for him, and we had a wonderful, if a little emotional, time.

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...

Of course, we travelled as a family also when my brother and I were younger. We didn't have the most money in the world, but when we did scrape enough together to get away we really made it count! My best travel memories include a road trip through France - which included camping in the Loire Valley, and ended in a stay in a rather grand looking rented chateau in Dordogne, along with many family friends - Malta with extended family, and a beautiful week spent in Portinatx, Ibiza, just the four of us.

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...
Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...

My Dad a laugh a minute, and never happier than when he was exploring somewhere sunny, or relaxing with a nice, cold beer by a pool or on the beach. I'm so happy that he got to travel so much during his retirement, but sorry for all the trips he wanted to take that he won't get to experience now. Guess this means I'm going to have to up my own travel game. The good news is, I now have my very own Scratch the World® map print!

Some Dads aren't here to celebrate with us this Father's Day, but we can still celebrate their adventures, and get inspiration for our own...

While I've travelled a fair bit in my time, and even spent a few years living and working in the Canary Islands, I'll admit I haven't actually ventured that far - mostly due to budget and a fear of flying. However, I'm suddenly experiencing a renewed sense of wanderlust this year, and my bucket-list is growing by the day! My Dad would have had great fun going over this scratch-off world map print with me, making recommendations and sharing stories. It would have made the perfect Father's Day gift for him.

This map has given me a nudge to organise myself and make some more travel happen this year, and moving forward. It's something I really do love, and I don't get to do enough of it. I'm going to be posting about various items on my bucket-list soon, to keep me on my toes.

If you're looking for the perfect Father's Day gift for a travel enthusiast, there's nothing more special than a Personalised World Map, or a Scratch Print. Maps International has a huge range of bespoke map gifts and prints that come with the Dave Stoker seal of approval!

Browse the full range of travel and hobby prints over at mapsinternational.co.uk 


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Thursday, 31 May 2018

5 Reasons to Try... Facial Oils

Here's why you should consider adding a facial to your 21st century skincare regime...

Women have been using natural facial oils to maintain healthy skin and a youthful complexion for thousands of years. Here's why you should consider adding one to your 21st century skincare regime...

Over the years I've seen the beauty world go crazy for body oils and hair oils... yet so many are still reluctant to add oils into their daily facial skincare routine. I kind of get it - we were told from a young age that an oily face was the devil and excess oil leads to spotty skin and a shiny nose, and it just seems inherently wrong to voluntarily apply an oil to the face - but it turns out oils have many benefits for all kinds of skin types

Here's why you should consider adding a facial to your 21st century skincare regime...

Natural face oils were used in Ancient Eqypt to help women keep their skin protected and nourished. To this day, many facial oils are still made from similar ingredients, extracted from seeds, flowers, nuts and other plants. Modern favourites include coconut, argan, and rose, and are some of the most pure and natural skincare products available. 

Facial oils are an instant fix for plumping the skin with moisture, without - contrary to popular belief - leaving your face feeling greasy or oily. 

Here's 5 Reasons to try one...


Here's why you should consider adding a facial to your 21st century skincare regime...

1) Intense hydration and nourishment

Facial oils are lipophilic (ie. they're drawn to fat) and are able to pass through the fatty layer of the skin's surface much faster and more effectively than a regular moisturiser. This not only provides an instant hit of moisture to thirsty skin, but also helps your skin retain that moisture more effectively throughout the day/night.

2) Help Minimise Pores

The best thing to shift oil and grease from pretty much anything is to... yep... apply more oil. Science can't be wrong! Facial oils effectively pull grime, dirt and fats out of pores, helping to minimise their appearance.

3) Anti Inflammatory

As well as being a soothing and hydrating treatment on sore or irritated skin, the natural ingredients in facial oils - such as rose or seed oils - can actually calm the skin and help bring down redness and irritation, while re-plumping it with moisture. Great for sufferers of eczema, rosacea, and other uncomfortable skin conditions.

4) They make a great primer

Because facial oils absorb into the skin so quickly, they make the perfect base for makeup and promote a smoother complexion.

5) Younger Looking Skin

By helping the skin retain moisture, facial oils make the skin appear more youthful and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 

Here's why you should consider adding a facial to your 21st century skincare regime...

How to use facial oils

- Apply to damp skin to really lock in moisture
- Introduce them into your routine gradually, by adding a couple of drops to your regular moisturiser
- For a more intensive treatment, massage a couple of drops into your face after toning, before applying your moisturiser
- Massage the oil into your face in circular motions, paying attention to the direction of your jawline and cheekbones - this promotes circulation and absorption and helps contour the skin.


If you're unsure about using a pure oil straight away, why not start by trying one of the many fantastic oil-based cleansers that are now available? Personal favourites of mine are The Body Shop Camomile Silky Cleansing Oil and Superdrug Vitamin E Dual-Phase Cleansing Oil. These grab all of the dirt, grease, and makeup from your skin before emulsifying into a milk which is then rinsed away completely, leaving skin feeling wonderfully soft and ready for toner and moisturiser. 

Here's why you should consider adding a facial to your 21st century skincare regime...

3 Facial Oils for your Wishlist...


Enriched with 3 precious Community Trade seed oils - Camellia Seed, Rosehip Seed, and Black Cumin Seed. High in omega 3 and 6, as well as antioxidants, and naturally rich in oleic acid. Full review on this coming soon!

Rich in linoleic (omega 6) and linolenic (omega 3) acids, alongside pro-vitamin A, the oil targets signs of photo-ageing and boosts the skin’s overall health for a radiant result.

This natural blend of highly concentrated plant-based superfoods deeply nourishes and hydrates. Anti-oxidant and omega-rich Broccoli, Flax Seed and Daikon Radish feed the skin for a healthy, radiant glow.

Do you use facial oils? If not... what's stopping you?

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