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MY WINTER SKINCARE SAVIOURS






Keeping your skin in good condition during the winter months can be extremely difficult in the UK, especially with the most unpredictable weather you could ever imagine.
I mean it's definitely something that needs to be regimental and consistent but it doesn't have to be a chore and with the right products it can be easier than you think to keep on top of your winter skincare.
Today's post is a review on all the products I have been using to keep my skin on top form so far this winter, from hand creams to face masks, I've got you covered.


#1 CAUDALIE HAND & NAIL CREAM

This hand & nail cream is the most delicious smelling formula I have ever used and I do love myself a hand cream. It smells like apricots and orange, which is a scent I wouldn't usually go for. Hand cream is SO important during the winter months, your hands and nails can take a real battering from the cold weather so make sure you always carry a hand & nail cream around with you in your handbag. The other hand cream I really recommend is the Vaseline collection especially the Vaseline Intensive Care Hand & Nail Cream.

Caudalie Hand & Nail Cream, Caudalie £12.00

#2 ELIZABETH ARDEN EIGHT HOUR CREAM INTENSIVE DAILY MOISTURIZER

It's no secret that the Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream collection is a favourite amongst every beauty blogger, but I had to mention the daily moisturiser because I swear by it. It's so rich and gives such a thick luxurious finish that you really feel like you're giving your skin a treat every single time you apply it.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Intensive Daily Moisturizer, Boots £30.00



#3 L'OREAL PURE CLAY GLOW MASK

L'Oreal Pure Clay masks are another beauty blogger favourite, but are quite new on the scene. My favourite of the four different masks is the glow mask. This mask gives you around 10 - 15 applications, which I think is amazing for the price and quality. The glow mask in particular has beads in it so doubles up as a scrub as well as a mask. I leave it on for around 10 minutes and usually try to use it once a week! It's great for getting rid of dry skin, especially around my nose which always seems to suffer the most during winter.

L'Oreal Pure Clay Glow Mask, Boots £7.99

#4 CAUDALIE GLYCOLIC PEEL MASK

This Caudalie Glycolic Peel Mask is an absolute dream if you have really dried out and dull skin caused by the winter weather. It's cream based and you apply all over your face and leave for 10 minutes. It's unlike any other 'peel' mask I have ever used and although you can feel it drying onto your skin, to touch it's still super moist and feels so silky. I really recommend the whole Caudalie range but this mask in particular is my favourite.

Caudalie Glycolic Peel 75ml, Caudalie £22.00


#5 ELIZABETH ARDEN EIGHT HOUR CREAM LIP PROTECTANT STICK 

Another Elizabeth Arden fave for me is the eight hour cream lip balm, I don't know anybody else who uses this but I absolutely swear by it when my lips are feeling cracked or dry. I wear a lot of matte lipsticks and creams which are universally known for being super drying. The eight hour formula has been formed into a lip balm stick that is easier to apply and spread than the original eight hour cream. It's a very intense formula that I find cures my chapped lips completely within 2 applications over 2 days. A great way to prevent chapped or cracked lips is to apply this lip balm every night before bed and sleep in it, you will really notice the difference.

Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream Lip Protectant Stick, Boots £20.00




That's all for my winter skincare saviours, I hope you have enjoyed this post & have taken some skin inspiration from this & I would love for you to let me know in the comments what your winter skincare saviours are, either that or come find me on twitter @3beksbabe.


HELLO HUDSON




Again, I have been away from my blog for a few weeks, but instead of just being too lazy to blog, I have a genuine reason for my time away. 
I HAD A BABY!
Last Thursday night to be precise, I gave birth to our beautiful little boy 3 weeks early and he is just too perfect for words. 
As you can imagine I have been bombarded with questions and messages, all of which I am SO grateful for and appreciate the love and well wishes so much, but dishing the details of my labour and beyond over and over again is tiresome. So I thought I would write a blog post for those interested and those who are preparing for an impending labour themselves!



OBSTETRIC CHOLESTASIS

In my first pregnancy it was lately discovered that I was suffering with a pregnancy related illness called 'Obstetric Cholestasis'. OC as it is more commonly termed is a condition that makes your liver basically fall apart, in not so formal terms. It increases the bile acids and ALTs in your liver functionality and can ultimately cause stillbirth and fatality for the mother if it's bad enough. The research on this condition is so minimal that medical professionals try to take as much precaution as possible when it comes to diagnosing and ultimately getting the baby out. I have had OC before in my first pregnancy, it was discovered the day before I was due and I was induced the next day. This time I have been more closely monitored and other than Hudson being fairly small, the OC didn't creep in until about 2 weeks ago, in which time I was in hospital every other day having blood tests until eventually they decided to take no risks and induce me at 36+4.

INDUCTION

On Tuesday evening I arrived at delivery suite to be induced. I have been induced before and knew not to expect to be in labour for a very long time, last time it took 6 days, so I had extremely low expectations for this to work. 
They are rolling out a new method of induction for anyone who has already given birth, it's a catheter cervix induction and I was offered this method over the chemical pessary. The method of this induction is inserting a catheter into your cervix and filling the balloon inside the cervix to encourage it to slowly open and induce labour. 
I had the cervix catheter in for 12 hours and it managed to pull away my plug and encourage a few contractions but as with most inductions it failed to do much else. 


THE WAITING GAME

After I had the cervix catheter removed, I had to then wait to have my waters broken, I waited all day Wednesday to see a doctor and finally at 6:30pm a doctor materialised in full surgery attire and when she pulled up a chair to sit down, I knew that something was wrong.
As you can probably imagine maternity services work on a moment to moment basis, no day is the same twice and you can't predict who and what situation is going to appear through the doors at any time. Babies wait for nobody and priority comes to those who need to deliver first, it's as simple as that.
So when the doctor sat down with me to tell me that it was going to be impossible to break my waters that evening due to a number of emergency c sections, although I sobbed like a baby (ironically), I could completely understand why. By this point I had been away from Harper for the longest time I have ever been in her life and I was really starting to miss her, as any mother would. 
I was the first on the list to have my waters broken, I wasn't allowed to go home in case they could break my waters an hour from then, but then again she didn't rule out it being anytime in the future, the time frame was as long as a piece of string and by dinner time I was on the ward with all the other women waiting in line to have their babies delivered. 


WAKE UP CALL

At 5:45am, around 10 hours after being thrown onto the induction ward, I was woken by a midwife and told to get ready to go back to have my waters broke. Poor Justin had slept on a chair with my dressing gown for a pillow for the second night in a row and although we were exhausted, we were just so pleased to finally get the ball rolling. 
On delivery suite we were taken to our room and by 7am on Thursday my waters were painfully broken by one of my lovely midwives. I then was sent off to try to get the ball rolling by myself before I go on the hormone drip. 
By this point I had a huge cannula in my right hand which meant doing anything became increasingly impossible. Justin had to feed me my breakfast and we started to anticipate how long it would take for our baby to show his face. We couldn't and didn't prepare ourselves for the next 16 hours ahead...

PAIN RELIEF IS LIFE 

By 10am I was hooked up to about 4 drips and my second birthing partner, my sister, had arrived. Due to being high risk, Hudson's heart needed to be measured from start to finish to ensure he was happy and stable at all times, so I agreed to have a clip attached to his head to monitor and make things easier and clearer to read for the midwives. At this point my it had changed to the day shift so I had a different midwife and student midwife with me, both of whom will probably never read this but were gave me the best memories and care I could've possibly hoped for. They made the whole experience relaxing and ALMOST painless. 
Let's get one thing clear, I am no hero and I have the WORST pain threshold of anyone you will ever meet, I cried when I got my ears pierced for goodness sake. So pain relief was not an option for me. it was a necessity for me and I am not ashamed of that at all. I needed to make this experience as stress free and as quick as I could for both me and my baby, so I did what I needed to do. 
At first by about 12pm I was on the gas & air, and it was amazing haha. Justin and Nicolle spent the whole time filming me because I spent the whole time crying with laughter and coming out with absolute shit that even had my midwife was crying with laughter at me. 
By 2pm I turned it up a notch and had the epidural, which I have had before and oh my god, I would recommend it to anyone in a long labour, it's amazing and thank god anaesthetist's exist because I don't think I could give birth without one haha. 

NO PROGRESS 

12 hours into labour at 7pm I was ready to be checked for dilation. I was so nervous because I know my luck and we all prepared for me to have only progressed to around 4cm, even though I was on a huge dose on the hormone drip and I was contracting 4-5 times in every 10 minutes.
The midwife checked me for dilation and I tried to read her face for a result, she then had the student midwife check too and they consulted each other outside of the room leaving us in anticipation. They came back and told me I was still 2cm, 3 at a push. 
2CM?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I WAS 2CM WHEN I GOT MY WATERS BROKEN 12 HOURS PREVIOUSLY!
Although I thought I would be more pissed off, I actually remained totally calm and just carried on, by this point the night shift was about to start and it was time for my midwives to handover. Luckily, I got to have the midwives back who broke my waters, so I was happy and ready to get going.

CONTRACTION CHANGES 

By about 9pm I was in AGONY, my epidural wasn't working the wire had stretched and wasn't connecting to the machine properly. I was on my own and feeling it wearing off with every single contraction. My contractions had completely changed and instead of feeling like period pains, it was immense pressure as if I my body was already pushing naturally. Like I said before I was a high risk patient so I was having my temp and blood pressure taken every 10 minutes at this point. Suddenly my temperature spiked and I was awaiting blood tests from doctors. At 11pm I was checked again for dilation, we all expected 6cm and in fact I was 10cm and his head was right there, he was ready to come out. 
I wanted to start pushing so I did with the help of the most amazing student midwife. Whilst I was pushing as well as having crazy contractions, I was having blood taken. my blood pressure done and my anaesthetist was awkwardly trying to fix my epidural. It was 23:27pm and I remember saying to the midwife, shall I wait for 33 minutes to give birth so that he is classed as full term? But I just couldn't wait any longer and by 23:33pm with the help of my student midwife, my fiance and my sister I gave birth to our son. 

IT WASN'T OVER

I woke up on the after care ward on Friday morning, feeling a little worse for wear. After Hudson had been born the rest of the night was a bit of a blur and I spent some time on the drips after a big bleed and contracting septicaemia during labour. Luckily, Hudson was completely healthy and happy, but my body was an absolute mess and I just couldn't acknowledge it for a second. All I cared about was Hudson and how he was. My cannula was still in for around 36 hours so that I could have all my antibiotics and it was stopping me from picking up the baby because it was so badly bruised. I felt completely useless and I just wanted to go home so badly. 
By Saturday because we had not seen sunlight since Wednesday afternoon it was only natural that I started to notice Hudson was turning a tinge of yellow, shock horror he had jaundice. 
Jaundice is a skin/blood condition which is caused by lack of sunlight and too much melolin in the blood. But as pedantic as it sounds due to Hudson being 27 minutes off full term, he was classed as a premature baby and immediately had to receive phototherapy treatment which lasted 14 hours, he hated every second of it but by Sunday morning his condition had dramatically improved.




THE ALL CLEAR & GOING HOME

On Sunday evening me and Hudson both got the all clear to come home, albeit I am on about 15 tablets a day and I have to inject my stomach every single day for the next 6 weeks. Hudson is perfect, happy and HUNGRY ALL THE TIME. We are bottle feeding after a bad breastfeeding experience and yesterday we were discharged from the midwives care. Hudson is TINY and none of his clothes fit him, he's 100% nocturnal which is a struggle but he's so content and loves to be swaddled. Harper is obsessed with him and is so interested in every aspect of his care and is already playing the protective big sister role perfectly. I hold him and can't believe he's here after the struggles of getting pregnant this time around. Now I am just looking forward to watching him grow and watching his relationship with his sister develop. Christmas is going to be so magical and we all just feel so complete. 





I hope you have enjoyed this post & again I just want to thank every single person who has taken the time to congratulate us and send well wishes and love, we are so overwhelmed by the love from all of you, thank you, thank you, thank yoooou.