This morning I woke up and everything seemed ok. I had a decent nights sleep & the sun was shining...
But by 12pm I was lying on my office floor, sobbing into my arms and whispering 'you need to lose weight', 'I fucking hate life', 'uhhhhh, you're disgusting'.
Destructive thinking 1. Gracie Francesca 0.
I'd seen a photo of myself that made me honestly want to run away and hide forever. I literally felt like I wanted to die. It was taken from my 'bad angle' (I have a few - I hope I'm not the only one) & it repulsed me.
I felt ugly. I felt guilty. I felt embarrassment. I felt shame.
I felt fat (as in - all the negative connotations linked to the word fat - lazy, hideous, gross, unhealthy etc). And I didn't want to look like me anymore.
(btw I have no idea where this post is going. I just need to get my thoughts out because I don't know how else to deal with them)
My hairs shit. My skins even worse. I hate all my clothes. My room is a mess. I wish I could stop thinking. I have so much to do. Why can't I just focus? Maybe I should stop eating. I really don't like my side profile. Why can't I stop eating? I hate my arms. Gosh, I really hate my arms. I used to be so much slimmer. I wish I could've carried on restricting the way I did back then. How can I lose weight quickly? Why do I always feel so drained? I wish I could talk to someone. I'm not good enough. I'm never gonna be good enough. Am I?
Am I normal for feeling like this? Am I due on? I fucking better be because this shit is starting to get old REAL quick.
On top of hating how I look today and feeling insecure AF, I have no motivation to do anything.
Zero. Zilch. None.
My to do is list is as long as my arm and I could really do with hoovering my bedroom but yet I'm sat here, drinking a giant bottle of water, watching random videos on the internet and holding my armpit to my fan because I'm fucking melting.
Im tired. So tired. Ive been really anxious lately so that could be why. Im getting enough sleep so I know its not that. Maybe overthinking makes you sleepy?
(Maybe I am due on. I haven't stopped crying. I've got sore nipples. Im craving chocolate AND A LOT OF IT).
Also, does anyone else get an overwhelming sense of 'if I'm not working myself to the bone everyday then I'm gonna fail at life',because same.
I know I should probably have a mental health sick day today. I should indulge in some self care, or at least drink tea, eat biscuits and watch Big Bang, but the thought of not getting shit done before I fly to NYC on Saturday is making me itch.
FFS Grace. Get your life together.
I think the biggest issue on days like this is feeling silly and alone. I sometimes catch myself questioning why & how everyone is happy and positive and living a great life, whilst I'm sat in baggy trousers, a baggy T and craving McDonalds.
(These are definitely not under 30 but I needed a pic. Soz)
Im a high street girl through & through. Although in the last 6 months I have invested in some designer accessories, the bulk of my wardrobe is high street (and I fucking love it). I browse ASOS, Missguided, Boohoo, Pull & Bear and F21 on a daily (they are my go to's, my number ones, my wifes for life - you get the picture). Im also partial to bit of River Island, Topshop & all the shoe stores like Ego Shoes, Public Desire & Office.. OH, and not forgetting Zalando (the best place to order your fave trainers for less).
Even though most of the stuff I buy is affordable, I wanted to collate some items that are all, £30 and under.
Why you ask?
Well, I love a bargain & I want my blog to be inclusive (I get that some of you are at uni or college & maybe, probably, eating beans on toast a few times a week and crying into your pillow because all you want is your mums toad in the hole) LOL, this was once me. I also LOVE to shop and help you guys out so the following pieces are cheap AF and will make your wardrobe bang.
I got you babes. (I might make this a thing if you guys like it so do let me know)
We all know I don't shy away from RL shit that women go through. From big boob problems, to fanny farting, I'm always up for talking about embarrassing things. The other day I was flicking through my travel posts and came across my photo diary from Portugal last year. It was a press trip with Curvy Kate and during said press trip, I got a bout of thrush (from pouring bath salts in our giant rooftop bath and drinking far too much alcohol lol) Reliving that hilarious yet itchy memory spurred me on to write this disgustingly honest post...
1. Using Food For Other Purposes
Dosing your vagina in M&S greek yogurt because thats all you've got in your flat to soothe your inflamed lips. (and because you cant be bothered to go to Tesco to buy Canasten.... again). Ugh. Stupid thrush.
2. 'Forgetting To Brush Your Teeth'
You wake up at 7am and realise your breath smells like someone has died. 'OH SHIT'. Thats because last night you were stuffing Cadbury Wholenut down your neck and downing Diet Coke because you had the worst.day.ever and yes.... You forgot to brush your teeth before you went to sleep. Sexy mama.
3. Not Wiping
You run into the toilet, pull your panties down and have the best pee of your life that you've been holding in for what felt like forever, only to realise theres no toilet roll. No probz babes. I can drip dry.
4. Watching Porn
You have a nice relaxing bath, put on your sexy pjs and slip into bed alone, with your laptop, browsing porn hub. A) you're horny as fuck but don't want to give up the goodies B) you're bored as fuck and watching Youtubers who you hate just isn't cutting it C) you plan to ride him like a cowgirl but you want to learn how..
5. Not Showering
Its Sunday which mean Netflix & chill (by chill I mean actually chill) and laze around festering all day. Shower on a Sunday? Naaaaahhhhhhhhhhh bruv.
6. Faking It
Because he's just SO.DAMN.HOT and has the potential to be Mr Right. Imagine telling him that he needs to cut his fingernails and he thrusts like a donkey? LOL LOL LOL.
7. Lying Out Of Jealousy
Telling all your friends how much of a fucking biatch the new girl is at work, when really, she's a total babe and you're a jealous little cow who needs to get her life together ASAP (we've all been there babes)
8. Pretending You've Got It Together
Getting home from work ABSOLUTELY starving and then realising you forgot to take the chicken out of the freezer. KILL ME NOW. So you decide to crack open a family sized bag of Doritos and dip because you cant afford to order another takeaway.
9. The Sniff Test
Things are getting a bit heated and just as his hands begin making way down to your vagina, panic steps in.. OMFG WHAT IF I SMELL. ITS SO HOT TODAY. I SHOWERED THIS MORING BUT NOW ITS 7PM. So you quickly revert to (in a sexy voice of course) 'babe, I just need to go to the toilet'. Before you know it your leg is on the bath, your nose is by your belly button and you're trying so damn hard to see if you smell weird. (now where the fuck are the baby wipes?).
10. You absolutely can relate to all of the above and now you want to die? LOL! #GirlProblems
In various aspects of my life, I've been pretty lost for many months (probs a year and a bit tbf). I think thats just what happens, especially in your 20s. You change, you grow, you evolve and sometimes that leaves you feeling like 'wtf am i doing with my life'.
As someone who's always been into fashion (at 14 I had 200 pairs of trainers - they were my thang) my style has somewhat remained the same, but I guess its just developed.
I find inspiration from Instagram, blogs & of course everyday life. I love walking around London and seeing 'normal' girls wearing killer outfits - I often take a cheeky little snap so that I can recreate the look or put my own twist on it.
However a longtime ago I was overcome with some sort of weird pressure that I needed to dress differently. I needed to dress like a blogger, whatever the hell that means. I spent £100s on re doing my wardrobe &buying clothes that I thought people wanted to see me sporting. I stopped wearing colour and opted for the 'minimal' style (which isn't me at all FFS). I just completely lost myself trying to be someone I'm not.
I was scrolling through Instagram and noticing the 'top fashion bloggers' had a minimal, monochromatic, effortless style that I just had to have so my following would grow. I remember picking outfits for LFW back in February, and asking myself 'is this a fashion outfit', and again - what the hell does that even mean?
Im usually so sure of myself so when I get completely lost, I end up frustrated and annoyed - which is why I fell out of love for fashion. I stopped posting Instagram pics, stopped making fashion videos and stopped shooting outfits for my blog.
Other factors also played a part in me completely forgetting how I like to dress, such as, putting on weight (post coming about that soonish) and lacking in some serious self care..
The start of 2016 was extremely traumatic for me, for a number of reasons and looking back now, I was definitely suffering with my mental health and I was also extremely unhappy. I was under a lot of pressure, I was overworked and I wasn't taking care of myself. Putting on makeup was a task that required so much effort, I would often just go bare faced. I lived in leggings and baggy tops and all in all - I looked and felt like shit.
After a break in May, I realised enough was enough and I needed to sort myself out. Part of that was to have a think about my personal style and spend some time falling back in love with fashion. When you're feeling insecure and overwhelmed, its natural to put yourself last so I gave a shit ton of clothes to charity, sold a few bits on Depop and had a complete re-vamp of not only my life, but my wardrobe too.
I looked at old photos and reminded myself how I used to dress so it was time to bring that person back lol. I like being daring and bright. I love colour, texture and patterns. I love oversized kimonos and cardigans, with cropped tops and comfy trousers. I like high waisted jeans, gold hoops and gold rings. I love statement shoes and sheer materials. I love anything and everything thats bardot. I like eather & chic, affordable accessories. I certainly do not like a predominately monochrome wardrobe, fedora hats and fitted shirts - thats for damn sure.
Im so glad my inspiration is back so that I can make a little more effort in my choice of outfits. If my outfit slays then I feel happier (so ridiculous I know, but thats me). Im excited to start sharing my looks with you all again, across my different platforms. I'll be shooting with my photographer soon but I really like sharing 'less high quality' photos with you sometimes, it kinda makes my space feel a bit more authentic.
Im trying to hold onto 2012 blogging so fucking bad aren't I? LOOOOL!
What I have learnt is that your aesthetic is a reflection of you, and how you dress can often let people know how you want to perceived. I guess I'm bold, a little sassy and downright full of life. And you know what? Im cool with that.
Heres what I wore & a few items I would love to incorporate into my wardrobe (by love, I mean need. ABSOLUTELY need).
Throughout the blogosphere I quite often come across tweets along the lines of 'we need to support everyone' or 'wheres the unity guys, lets all stick together', which I completely get and understand. Last year I felt super let down and a little annoyed about the lack of support in the blogging community - you can read my post about it here. I had achieved something that I was super proud of, but many of my fellow bloggers appeared not to give two fucks.
Although I stand by what I said in that post & the whole 'you cant sit with us vibe' is still very much there (probs a lot worse now), my thoughts on the subject have changed, just a tad anyway.
Maybe its life experience or growing more wise but I've come to realise that trying to support everyone is draining and a little bit fake.
Blogging is full of a large bunch of females, or young girls who are all trying (Im assuming slightly here) to become business women in their own right. Trying to grow their followers, trying to get a poppin' Instagram theme & trying to build a brand etc etc (the list goes on)..
So who the hell has the time to support everyone we come across? I certainly don't.
Of course, support the industry as much as you can. Shoot down shitty papers like The Sun for their awful articles on bloggers & tell Cosmo to SIT DOWN when they publish shitty pieces on how much we all earn, but we don't need to support every blogger, just the ones we actually like, obvs.
I think a lot of bloggers have their backs up at the moment because of all the 'negative' posts that are constantly being published by other bloggers. I know its not nice to be the butt of someones post, or the reason for a Twitter war to be declared, however, like with any job, not everyone will agree with what you have to say or in fact, even like you. Hey babes.. thats life.
I try to give credit where credit is due because its important to me to acknowledge when someone is killing it & its nice to spread positivity. I love when people tweet me to say 'Hey, I really like what you're doing', but I don't expect every Sarah, Sally & Suzie to favourite every post and like every Instagram pic.
It doesn't make someone a bad person if they don't support you, maybe they simply can't relate to you, maybe they don't like the layout of your blog (kind of a stupid reason but a reason nonetheless) and maybe they disagree with some of the things you say?
I know what you're thinking 'BUT GRACE, SOME PEOPLE ARE JUST JEALOUS AND THATS WHY THEY DONT SUPPORT HER', which I'm not dismissing. Blogging is a female lead industry so jealousy is bound to happen, but we can't be naive here..
Yes, girl power is extremely important and when the going gets tough its important to back your people up, but in all honesty, not everyone is your 'people'. Not everyone is a part of your squad and thats just the way it is. Sometimes the people preaching 'we need to support everyone' are the same people who don't appear to be supporting everyone. Do you know what I mean?
Personally, I support people who go about their business making content they're proud of. Who aren't ashamed to have an opinion but equally respect other peoples too. Its the real world and not everything is glossy, sweet & wonderful all the time (contrary to blogger cliche beliefs lols)
I don't want this post to come across as 'Hey I'm Grace the Negative Nancy', but I just wanted to flip the script and be a bit of an adult about it all. Maybe spout some food for thought as I've been wanting to write this post for a while.
All in all, you're not a bad person for disagreeing with another blogger. You're not negative for sharing your opinion that makes another blogger feel inferior. Basically, you're not a bitch for not supporting everyone..
There has been numerous debates on twitter, constant arguments on Instagram and general discussions between myself & others on whether we should 'keep the plus' or 'drop the plus'. Ashley Graham (probs the most successful curve model in the world right now) is for dropping the plus, whilst nearly every person I know who is plus size, is all for keeping it.
Maybe thats the issue...
Curve models don't necessarily know all the struggles that the fat general public actually have to face. Lets be honest here. A model is an aspiration right? They have to and usually do, have an acceptable amount of 'fat' in all the right places. They have thick thighs, a jiggly bum, but slim arms and a toned stomach, so the images we see of them, aren't what many of us fat girls look like.
Don't get me wrong. I love seeing bigger models on the runway and plastered all over billboards, but its just not enough.
I want to see more body types like me. I want to see rolls, I want to see cellulite & I want to see fat arms etc etc etc.
So what does the term 'plus size' mean to me?
A few years ago if you called me plus size, I would wince with shame and embarrassment. A few years ago, if you asked me to keep or drop the plus, I would say drop. You see, the annotations associated with the term 'plus size' or 'fat' were negative, hurtful and down right cruel. Growing up it just wasn't okay to be fat. If you were fat (even just a little bit) then you were lazy, disgusting & greedy. I don't remember a time where I wasn't trying to lose weight. I never felt good enough so in turn, I ended up with serious eating problems & other mental health issues such as depression and self harm.
The acceptance of fat bodies or just bodies that didn't look like the models on the cover of magazines, would have probably saved me and others who were young & impressionable
Fast forward to 2014 where I came across a community of plus size bloggers. Bloggers who were fat, fat like me & had bodies like me... but were happy??!! THEY WEREN'TTRYING TO LOSE WEIGHT OR TELL ME THEIR NEW DIET AND WEIGHTLOSS SECRET!!!?? (I genuinely couldn't believe there were people out there like this, it blew my mind)
Stumbling across people like Callie, Danie, George, Gabi & more recently, my boo thang Olivia, changed my life & I owe those girls more than they could possibly imagine.
At a time where I needed it the most, I was able to see a light at the end of a very dark tunnel, that just felt like it was getting longer and longer.
It was exhilarating to be able to relate to other woman who were bigger than whats 'acceptable' (F U society and your ideals) but who were also fashionable as fuck. Women who had bodies similar to mine but looked amazing, were damn well stunning & also made me feel good about myself. Women who were happy with what they looked like and pulled people up on fat shaming. Women who weren't trying to fit in, but instead were comfortable standing out. Women who didn't constantly pose to look slimmer or hide their fat in photos. Women who wore bikinis and POSTED THOSE BIKINI PICS ON INSTAGRAM FOR THE WORLD TO SEE? Women who were C O N F I D E N T.
To me, plus size is a descriptor, just like tall & petite, its what my body is and there is nothing wrong with that. The only reason its seen as 'damaging' or 'wrong' is because society believes being plus size is damaging and wrong.
'Ew, plus size people are basically saying that being fat is okay and they're glorifying obesity'
In actual fact the term 'plus size' is a way to shop for clothes that will fit my big thighs. Its a way for me to search for other people that I can probably relate to more than the same people that appear on my Bloglovin' explore feed (yup I'm throwing shade). Its a term that enables me to feel part of a group that doesn't tell me to lose weight but in fact celebrates my size. Its a place for me to feel included.
Being plus size or the phrase plus size, in the grand scheme of things has bought me nothing but positivity. I now have like minded friends who build me up, instead of bring me down (aint nothing more fucked up than having size 8 friends moan about how fat and ugly they are, when I'm sat there like OK COOL DO YOU KNOW HOW DISRESPECTFUL THAT IS YOU SWINE). I buy size 18 or 20 trousers without feeling ashamed or guilty because I now know that being the size I am (at any size) is perfectly okay.
Oh & for the record.. Im 'keep the plus'. I do understand that inclusivity is also a factor in all of this but in my opinion, like I said before, the term plus size is just like tall or petite. Its a descriptor that plus size people are in fact proud of. Nobody likes being labeled, but if need be, we're cool with being plus.
We all know that New York is one of my favourite places in the entire world world to visit. Im actually going back in a few weeks to celebrate my 26th birthday and the countdown is officially on.
The buzz, the food, the friends I have there, all make every trip pretty damn special. I've visited numerous times now so I like to think its a little like my home away from home. (sill do not understand the Metro system though)
For me, NYC is basically London on speed. Its extra fast paced and full of culture, opportunities and life. There are a few things I repeatedly do when I visit so I thought I'd share them with you.
1. Sleep With A View.
Whenever I book my accommodation for my next dose of the USA, I always ALWAYS, opt for somewhere with a banging view (still within my price range obvs). During my last trip I stayed at the Fifty NYC hotel and my room overlooked the typical tall buildings with a road where you could watch all the cars go by. No matter how many times I visit New York, I still get giddy over the yellow cabs. Laying in just pants late at night, eating a donut and watching trashy TV, there is nothing quite like gazing out at THAT view, especially when its all lit up.
Accommodation can be RIDICULOUS in NYC, and theres obviously cheaper options available, but I really would recommend laying your head here. My room was huge with a separate kitchen (that even came with a small amount of food) and a humble sized bathroom. The bed was insanely big, with those proper fluffy pillows. The staff were friendly & accommodating - I actually fell in love with the bell boy lol. Its in a great location for shopping, brunching and generally just exploring what NYC has to offer. I actually featured this hotel in my March NYC vlogs which you can watch here.
155 E 50th St, New York, NY 10022, United States.
2. Eat Doughnuts
Now, eating sugary, delicious food in NYC is a given right? But my absolute favourite indulgent is DONUTS, in particular Dough, Doughnuts. Giant, fluffy, juicy, flavoursome, sweet, UTTER PERFECTION, sugary rings of joy. Dunkin' Donuts are also pretty sexy & I know there's a Doughnut Pub in NYC too (which is on my hit list for my next trip).
There is something so wonderful about scoffing a doughnut, drinking coffee & exploring one of the most magical cities in the entire world.
Im pretty sure this is a given but incase you needed a gentle push to book your seats, this is your reminder. I know going to the theatre isn't for everyone BUT for me, its a place to wind down, to chill and to be entertained. Whether thats The Lion King for you Disney lovers, Wicked for you lot who LOVE seeing raw talent AND there's even Kinky Boots for those of you that love theatrics, fun & comedy. Growing up I used to dream of watching a show on Broadway so whenever I'm in NYC, I try and make a performance. I love going to the theatre in London, but shows on Broadway are simply on a different level.
4. Visit The 9/11 Memorial
I've been twice and both times I was left speechless. I guess its pretty obvious why, but it really brings home the absolute tragedy that hit not only New York, but the world, back in September 2001. You see the faces of the dead, pieces of The Twin Towers & also things like, bicycles, wallets and sunglasses - the things that mean nothing to us, but everything to the people and family who lost their lives. Its an eerie atmosphere but definitely a place to visit nonetheless.
5. Brunch At Sweet Chick
Part of NYC culture is to 'do brunch' at any given opportunity & I am not complaining. Whether you have avo' on toast with a green juice or french toast and bacon, brunch in NYC just has.to.happen.babes!
(Egg Shop, NYC)
On my last trip, my stateside girls took me to Sweet Chick in Brooklyn and it blew my damn mind. Although we queued for hours (its extremely popular so prepare yourself for a long ass wait) and the service wasn't the best (soz Sweet Chick) the food was fucking ridiculous. There were 8 of us, and we legit ordered half the menu and shared it all. The fried chicken and waffles were SOOOOO good. Tasty, sweet and salty, buttery & completely moreish. You have to visit! Its a must! Located in Brooklyn too (hipster central), its a great opportunity to explore, shop & take lots & lots of New Yorkyyyyyy type photos. Perf.
164 Bedford Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211, United States
6. Buy Something Special
Other than London, NYC is my fave place to drop some serious dolla dolla. There are so many fab places to shop & bargains to be had. For me personally, I love buying special splurge purchases that will remind me for years of visiting my fave place. Whether its a fancy schmancy palette from a Sephora, an expensive perfume from Bloomingdales or a designer bag from Barneys. I think the appropriate saying is TREAT YOSELF GURL.
I think everyone needs to visit NYC at least once during their lifetime. Im so lucky that I am able to go 2/3x a year & I cannot wait for my next flight out.
8 Things To Tell Yourself On A Low Body Image Day..
I can hand on heart say that nowadays I'm body confident more than I'm not and boy does that feel good. I've surrounded myself with wonderful friends who make me feel like I'm beautiful no matter my size & I've also learnt that the most important things in life have absolutely NOTHING to do with the way you look, the size of your jeans or how much cake you consumed last night. (Usually at least half am I right or am I right)?
However even I have days where I hate what I see in the mirror. Whether that be because I've seen a photo of myself at THE.WORST.ANGLE.EVER or I've compared myself to Susie, Sally & Sarah.
So I decided instead of crying for the next 4 hours, delving into a large bar of Milka Wholenut chocolate and then contemplating going on some ridiculous diet to lose ridiculous weight to fit society's ridiculous ideals.. I'm going to write a helpful post for my readers instead (and to help me too, OBVS)
1. It's okay to feel down sometimes. All your life society has told you that you're not good enough, so it takes time to undo everything you've been made to believe.
2. You're more than this. You're more than these destructive thoughts. You're more than hateful comments and remarks. You are more than you look. You will be remembered for more than your outer exterior. It's the soul that counts.
3. You're beautiful. No matter what your mind tells you or another person tells you. You are beautiful.
4. Be a bit kinder to yourself babes. You're not a murderer or a bad person. You're actually alrite!
5. You're not alone. Text someone who cares about you and lean on them for a while. You'd do the same for them right?
6. You're a fucking bad ass boss bitch. (Apply your favourite lipstick and put on one of your extra sassy outfits)
7. Everyone's rooting for you. I'm even rooting for you. You're a breath of fresh air to this world. 8. 'YOU IS KIND, YOU IS SMART, YOU IS IMPORTANT'. No matter what you weigh, no matter what you look like, no matter what the size of your jeans are.
Its better to be soul food than eye candy (new fave saying that I live by)
If all of the above still haven't made you feel any better, have a cry & take a nap. We're in this together.
Okay. So fanny farts?!?! We've all probably done them (numerous times might I add) yet it's still a subject most of us shy away from. I'll also be the first to admit that I secretly still wince when I think about all those embarrassing teen sex moments. (And there's plenty - trust me) Shudder!
Now I'm 25 (26 next month but I don't look a day past 15) I sort of pretty much talk about everything. I guess I'm sexually liberated and wish there were more people like me now, for younger me to look up to.
Sex happens every second of everyday, it's natural, it's normal and I 100% think we should all talk about it more, especially covering the more embarrassing, but equally hilarious sex topics. Eg; fanny farting, friction burn & the awkward wobble to the toilet to pee because ain't nobody got time for cystitis.
When you're bent over or sat on top, you're in missionary or your legs are behind your head (I'm flexible I can do this babes), there are so many thoughts whizzing through your brain. Do I look hot? That feels good. I wish I had a wax. However, when that squelch sound starts and you realise you're legit FARTING, the thoughts escalate. Am I right or am I right?
1. Wait. Pause. Rewind.. Did I just fanny fart?!?
2. Hmm. I'm not sure what hole that came out of.
3. Okay. That was definitely an actual fart. I'm not sure what's more embarrassing.
4. Kill me. Kill me right now.
5. Did he hear that? Did he feel that?
6. He definitely heard that & probably felt it too.
7. I am SO embarrassed.
8. LOL! LOL! LOL!
9. I don't understand why this keeps happening.
11. What the fucking fuck
12. *runs to the toilet to escape dying of embarrassment & the farts continue* The ground needs to swallow me up and never ever spit me back out.
13. I'm not having sex anymore.
14. Okay stop being dramatic and just get over it you pussy.
15. At least it doesn't smell... I don't think.
16. If it puts him off I don't care because it's just a fucking fanny fart and it could be worse. I mean, I could've pissed myself.
Ladies. Fanny farting is completely normal and we've all and will all do it. Laugh when it happens & keep it moving. If your sexual partner is a true man he won't care.. And if he does care, then he shouldn't even be in your vagina. See ya later fuck boy.