HEAVENLY GLUTEN FREE CHOCOLATE CALENDARS

It is no surprise that I adore chocolate but as a coeliac it doesn’t always love me back. Every December I feel like I am missing out when it comes to chocolate Advent Calendars but I am sad no more. I have finally found The One with the Pure Heavenly gluten free, low sugar and vegan calendars.

These yummy calendars come in milk or white chocolate variant (I got both, duh!). I love the high quality and *of course* the taste! I definitely watch my sugar intake with my family history of diabetes and I dislike sugar-loaded gluten free chocolate where sugar is only added to mask the low quality formula.

It is especially hard to find a lovely Advent Calendar if you are gluten free and vegan. Pure Heavenly got us covered! It really makes me happy opening that little numbered window every day to enjoy a little drop of heavenly.

Now is a good time to get your calendar as three units are £15 with the code ADVENT3. You can basically eat one week worth of chocolate to catch up and save a calendar for January as a tasty countdown to payday 🙂

Pure Heavenly also run a subsciption based Chocolate Club (mmm..) . I am not surprised that they won BBC Dragons Den!

Get your chocolate fix here

Petra XOXO

GIFT GUIDE FOR HIM

Ladies, do you struggle with inspiration for Christmas gift ideas for men? I have done the hard part for you so you don’t have to. The best bit? These gifts are (mostly) unisex and great for sharing (whether he wants to or not).

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a new fragrance under that pretty tree. I absolutely adore Remarkable People by Etat Libre d’Orange . This is a very uplifting citrusy nectar with the note of Grapefruit and a Champagne Accord. Then the more sensual second-skin like Sandalwood, Black Pepper and comforting Cardamom join the party. It is beautifully unisex (ding ding jackpot) and extremely wearable all year round. Plus it is not a high-street formula which everyone owns. This is the perfect scent for that remarkable person!

£85 for 50ml

Men love gadgets and Arcwave Ion Pleasure Air Technology Stroker will (literally) love them back! The Stroker is a sleek sex toy for penis owners and focuses on delivering the best sensation to the sensitive tip (the closest thing to a female orgasm). Arcwave has taken the male orgasm into another level and orgasms is the gift that just keeps on giving.

In the words of Arcwave: Experience a new type of orgasm as unique pulsating airwaves stimulate sensitive Pacinian pleasure receptors in the frenulum.

If he has been a truly good boy, £169 will be well spent! Happiness for you both.

Does he steal your skincare or washes his face with a shower gel full of chemicals? Agne from Ginger Fox Natural Beauty has the perfect solution in the shape of Superfood AHA Cleansing Lotion. This cleanser is suitable even for the most sensitive skin (aka yours) and contains my favourite Kaolin Clay. This is an awesome skincare hero for tackling breakouts. Alpha-Hydroxy Acids gently exfoliate (this helps with pesky ingrown hairs for his face and your bikini line) and deliver deep cleanse whilst leaving skin silky soft. Turmeric and Green Tea extract tackle inflammation and bacteria and Avocado Oil nourishes.

The best part? This £19 cleanser doubles up as a face mask.

Whilst I am talking about pampering, I can highly recommend booking a treatment or a spa day at The Corinthia Hotel. This is a dreamy spa in the heart of London but built under the hotel so you are in a tranquil world of your own. The spa got a gorgeous state of the art aqua room. The marble loungers are heated and the warm fire will keep him cosy (or you if you sneakily get a couples treat). I had a hot stone massage and a full body scrub treatment so I know how relaxing this piece of heaven is. You can easily spend the entire day there as you can pop upstairs for a spot of light healthy lunch in your dressing gown.

Want an extra treat? Try their afternoon tea made of cute sweet nibbles, fluffy finger sandwiches and buttery scones. They even cater for *people like me* aka gluten free gal with an expensive taste.

But you will need to shed your robe for this five star experience and slip into something more elegant (with an elasticated waist).

Everyone likes a good snooze, even the male species. Drowsy got you (and his eyes covered). This is a superb sleep mask made from real Mulberry silk. It is a padded soft bliss that wraps around the head and doesn’t slip off all night (honestly). This is especially handy if your man works night shifts or he lives on a busy street with lights.

Favourite part? This £59.95 silky babe doubles up as a blindfold for bedroom play which makes the price tag (almost) acceptable.

Happy Holidays! x

POST BREAK-UP SELF-CARE

I have recently gone through a break-up and want to share some of my tips that have helped me.

Heartbreak is painful no matter how tough we are. But how we deal with it is important. Also no break-up is the same. It depends why a relationship has ended. If people grow apart and it is an amicable goodbye, it might feel easier than escaping an abusive toxic coupling up. The healing time will also differ but a great self-care routine applies to all.

Firstly accept that it is ok not to be ok. There is no shame in crying, eating crappy food and watching movies on repeat. As long as you don’t stay in this phase for too long. All the crying and sleepless nights can wreck havoc with our immune system and hormones. When we are stressed, cortisol levels shoot up and this contributes to break outs. Combined with junk food and alcohol, your skin will not reward you with a glow. I don’t drink alcohol and gluten free diet keeps me in my lane so I didn’t go too crazy eating carrots. I got too friendly with sandwiches instead. Carbs are life.

So what has helped me?

Talking to friends and spending time with them, no matter how shitty I felt. Granted, the first few days I became glued to my sofa and barely ate anything. I also couldn’t sleep or focus. But texting and actually speaking with my closest friends made a huge difference. If you got a therapist, call them too. It is not fair to keep off loading to friends as they got their own crappola to deal with. But also setting boundaries with some people is essential. I don’t want to broadcast intimate details to everyone and anyone asking (as much as they might be meaning well it can act as a trigger).

I broke up with my ex but I didn’t run to my social media to vent. No matter how things end, it is never a smart idea. Your co-workers will think you have lost your mind (you might have but keep that for your closest buds) and your ex might get a (sick, twisted) satisfaction. Block that number, delete those photos. No second or third chances; know your self-worth. Why be with someone who doesn’t appreciate or see your value the first time round?

Please remember, leaving an unhealthy relationship is an act of self-love.

I have taken up Hatha Yoga in my local town of Westgate-on-Sea and go twice a week. The practice helps me physically, mentally and our little group of yogis is a joy to be around. My teacher is also a ray of sunshine and didn’t judge me for crying through few sessions!

Going for a workout is an achievement to be celebrated. So is walking. I walk 1-2 hours per day as I am lucky to be living by the beach. I eat clean and my gluten free diet is full of fruit, veggies and nuts and seeds. I now got the best toned bum I have had in years and my tummy is getting firm. Getting fitter, hotter but mainly healthy has become my mantra. I am also investing in myself with joining inspirational online Ted talks and seminars and reading empowering books. Another investment is my silk pillow case (no more crease marks or bedhead), sleep mist, CBD oil, candles, incense sticks, vitamin supplements and healthy food to nourish my body and soul. Vitamin D has been fab for mood-lifting.

Self-love is the most important love you will ever have.

Listening to podcasts has also been great. I like My Therapist Ghosted Me. Visiting new places and creating new memories is a must. Look forward not backwards. So my friend and I finally made it to the Shell Grotto in Margate despite feeling sleep-deprived and crummy. All a gal needs is a 4.6 million shells and a handful of brill mates!

I didn’t feel at peace in my home after the break-up. I decluttered and threw away anything that was associated with my ex. I moved furniture around, decluttered, got more green plants and lovely smelling candles. I burned sage for more positive vibes. New bed linen is always a good idea. Claim your space and make it a happy one again. And have plenty of delicious orgasms. If possible, get a new sex toy that your ex hasn’t used with you before. I got my cute pink Womanizer Premium Eco. Fresh start is a blessing. So are multiple orgasms.

To help me drift off, break-up or not, I listen to progressive muscle relaxation and take a warm bath adding Olverum Bath Oil. This is a heavenly mixture of 10 essential oils – Rosemary, Lavender, Verbena, Juniper, Geranium, Eucalyptus, Lemon Peel Oil and more. What a star line up to grace my tub. This delicate formula is perfectly blended to deliver harmony to senses and to slow down that tired brain. As Sylvia Plath wrote, the water really is the best way to purge feelings. Add this dreamy bath oil to make your own poetry.

Olverum Bath Oil turns water into liquid silk; my skin adores feeling supple and hydrated yet not greasy. Each soak is a pampering session. The 125ml luxurious glass bottle will keep you company for 25 baths. This is 25 soaks in The Heartbreak Spa by which time you will be feeling on top of the world.

My bath time is followed by a cup of hot cocoa with plant milk. I am talking raw cacao and not some sugary imposter. It is like a miracle for emotional and physical wellbeing. And bloody delicious.

I then spray my pillow with Olverum sleep mist and apply Kiki Health Magnesium Oil on my wrists. Most of us are deficient so this oil will help with fatique. Magnesium also has calming effect which helps me with falling asleep. The bottle of this will last for months.

I am wishing you all the best on your heartbreak recovery. That feeling of waking up one day and feeling happy and like yourself is the best feeling in the world. I want that for you.

Another thought – being single is like being rich.

Happy healing!

Petra x

MY SEMI-PERMANENT BROW JOURNEY

I have always envied the likes of Cara Delevigne for her beautiful thick brows. I have been filling in mine with pencils, powders and gels for years. Basically my eyebrows have been a total work of fiction.

After a careful consideration and a thorough research, I have received a consult and a patch test by Jessica Abbott. I was afraid of scarring or a botched permanent tattoo. This is why choosing Jessica was so important to me as she has 15 years of experience. She also trains future artists which is a testament in itself.

There are different types of brows you can choose – Powder, Invisi, Hair Stroke or a Combined. Together we decided on combining above techniques (Combined) to achieve natural yet visible results.

Does it hurt?

The area is thoroughly numbed with a cream (no injections or anything scary) and the treatment feels more tickly than anything else. I could barely feel the first pass. On the second pass the skin is little bit more sensitive so I felt it tiny bit but not painful I promise.

Jessica is highly skilled but also heaps of fun. I love her bubbly personality and positive outlook on life. This is why you must check out her Instagram – Jessica posts before and after photos of her clients as well as documenting fun with her staff.

How long before brows are healed?

Everyone is different but it took me about 10 days. The skin feels a bit dry and tight and then it starts to peel off to reveal the desired colour. At first the colour appears 50% darker (on my way home I thought what the heck did I just do to myself). With the grand reveal I could see it was all worth it! A top up follows roughly 6-12 weeks later just to see if anything needs tweaking.

How long does it last?

This depends on your lifestyle – sun exposure, age etc..I expect mine to stay for about 2 years.

How much does it cost?

The price list and other treatments are here

This is the talented and very lovely Jessica Abbott.

To join her waiting list for her gorgeous Kent clinic (near Canterbury) :

07889 628 359

INFUSED AMPHORA 6000mg CBD OIL DROPS TO INSPIRE AND SOOTHE

The market is saturated with CBD products, but it is quality I go for. If a CBD oil is suspiciously cheap, it means the strength will be well, weakness. You will be paying for a diluted product which will leave you unsatisfied.

Why CBD?

CBD ranges from potential benefits for treating chronic illness to supplementing general health and well-being. In my opinion it is excellent for fibromyalgia, insomnia and anxiety.

I am a keen CBD user (nope, it doesn’t get me high) and have tried oral drops, body balms, sexual wellness creams, bath salts, vape etc…I got several go-to brands on my roster and Infused Amphora is one of them.

I have finally got my mitts on their High Strength CBD Oil Drops – they come in 4 variations at 30ml. Mine is called Inspire to help me boost creativity (my next book isn’t going to pen itself) and to relax me. This potent citrusy yet earthy flavoured formula contains 6000mg of CBD (yes, honey!).

Infused Amphora’s 6000mg High Strength CBD Oil Drops are seriously potent for ultimate effectiveness! Each full dropper contains 200mg of pure CBD extract, plant-based terpenes and MCT oil to help you meet your wellness goals quickly and conveniently.

It is also made of 100% organically grown hemp. Quality over quantity always.

Get yours here £99.99

MY VANITY TABLE

I love vanity tables. There is something so feminine and personal about them – the perfumes we choose to wear and trinkets to display. Mine is a combination of family photographs, fragrances, make-up, jewellery, the odd crystal, lingerie, cinema tickets and few sentimental things.

My vintage chest of drawers is from Ebay and the mirror is from my local charity shop (when it comes to an upgrade, I will go for a huge Hollywood mirror with millions of bulbs). The boudoir stool is from George at Asda and I love that it has a storage for my hair styling tools and sex toys. It is surprisingly sturdy, comfortable and looks super cute.

I also adore my SAY SOMETHING IN FRENCH trinket dish from Hotel Magique for Anthropologie – £ 12. But my favourites are my family photographs – a wedding photo of my grandparents, a photo booth snap of my brother and a photographic evidence that my mother was (is) a hot and effortlessly stylish babe. The white angel candle was a gift from her (because I am such an angel -not).

I am renting a cute little flat in the coastal Westgate-on-Sea after turning my back on London. Since it is a rental, I can’t really paint or change anything. I decided to jazz up my plain walls with a tinsel curtain aka party wall. This is self-adhesive and takes a minute to put up. It certainly kissed a lot of glam into my bedroom.

I am into pearls, hoop earrings and statement rings. I do love obnoxious trophy earrings though (sorry, earlobes). The clear sparkly necklace hung over the mirror frame belonged to my maternal granny. I often wear it stacked up on my wrist as a layered bracelet.

..and the glow up post tinsel wall. Get yours here

To cover the nasty office-feel grey carpet, I have invested into super soft plush boho style rug. And when the days are not-so-sunny, I got a tripod ring light. It is super handy for shooting content and gives that perky skin glow. And of course, I had to add some green plants. They are an affordable way how to add a touch of nature into any living space. I also got a lovely selection of candles, but they now live in the sitting room and near my bathtub. I will also share my favourite fragrances with you soon and my lingerie drawer (I am a *little bit* obsessed with pretty smalls!).

I am still on a hunt for the perfect curtains but for now I am enjoying my sea views like an unlimited food buffet. What a starved Londoner after living in a damp basement in Angel & Islington!

Petra xoxo

VELLA WOMEN’S PLEASURE SERUM

I display Vella Women’s Pleasure Serum on my nightstand proudly; the dark pink packaging with transparent lid is luxe, and the product inside *literally* makes me happy on the inside. So how does it work?

Twenty minutes prior solo play or sex with my partner, I apply three pumps of this CBD goodness onto my inner labia and clitoris. There is no tingling or burning sensation as you might expect with traditional products available on the market; The sensation is more of a warm relaxed feeling.

The 320mg CBD nano-encapsulated molecule is pure and active, which allows the dosing to be deep and exacting. When I say deep, the CBD is delivered into the tissues where it works to relax the smooth muscle. This stimulates arousal, followed by deeper and more satisfying orgasm.

Vella caters for every vagina and clitoris at any age or life stage. The vegan and paraben free formula assists with lubrication which makes it a lubricant and an arousal serum in one.

The complexity of female orgasm can be challenging and there is often a pressure to perform instead of enjoyment. For me, this product makes me feel in mood even when my body and brain tell me otherwise. Vella Pleasure Serum makes coming possible and amplifies every orgasm. The world would be a better place if we all had orgasms, and I truly believe having them is a part of our full body health and a major part in self-care.

“Vella Women’s Pleasure Serum is an orgasm in a bottle”

16 uses $65

Try it here vellabio.com

Instagram @vellabioscience   #ComeWithVella

OLVERUM BODY POLISH

I am a loyal devotee to body scrubs, but I had no idea one could be this special. And it is not ‘just a scrub’ – this is an Olverum Body Polish. And I like Olverum products just like I like starting my sentences with an and.

This seductive newcomer quickly cast all my gritty oily scrubs aside. The luxe glass jar contains the best mixture of papaya enzyme, hydroclay and essential oils. I have used exfoliating papaya-based face masks in the past but never knew just how good a Fermented Papaya Enzyme would treat the skin on my body.

The dead dry skin cells get broken down without any harsh scrubbing. It feels like a relaxing massage. Even the delicate skin on my chest loves this which has been essential at removing sunscreen build up and other deep-set impurities. This is where Hydroclay comes to play. Paired up with Bamboo and Pumice, it means business but leaves skin satin soft. No oily residue or grease. Give me more, please.

I must tell you just how good this body polish smells. The Olverum alchemists had me at Bergamot and Ylang Ylang, but really got me hooked on the Grapefruit, Geranium and Rosemary spa-like aroma. I don’t even need a body lotion after this, and I love the subtle scent it kisses my skin with.

I also love knowing that I can recycle this glass pot (although I am keeping mine for storing hair grips). Olverum Body Polish is vegan and cruelty-free, free from artificial preservatives, fragrance and colourants, Silicone, Mineral Oil, Petrolatum, Sulphates, Phthalates, Parabens, Triclosan and animal derived ingredients.

Olverum Body Polish is part of my self-care ritual. I find the smell extremely comforting; my skin is buffed and shined yet soothed. If Olverum made scented cashmere shawls, this would be it.

Olverum Body Polish £38

TROPHY SKIN ULTRADERM MD – DIAMONDS ARE A GIRLS’ BEST FRIEND

With the salons getting shut during the pandemic, we all turned to our home beauty treatments and face masks. I certainly missed my Botox and microdermabrasion. There is no amount of scrub that can mimic the wonders of deep exfoliation and creams to fake true radiance.

 I am so excited to introduce you to my best kept secret, the Ultraderm MD by Trophy Skin 3-in-1 system. Fake no more and discover your best skin (you are welcome).

This white and rose gold beauty comes with all the tips, charger and a year’s supply of filters. There is a built-in mirror; the device looks more like a precious trinket box, promising magical skin. Yes, please!

When you turn on your machine, the mirror lights up and it produces gentle purring sound which means business but nothing too loud or intimidating.

So, what does this sleek in-home skincare gadget do?

UltradermMD exfoliates, extracts, polishes, brightens, tones and revitalizes your skin for an instantly softer, smoother complexion.

But I can say it does so much more – it will give you skin confidence like never before. And the power is literally at your fingertips.

My favourite part is that it buffed away dull and dry rough skin patches with minimal effort. The diamond tips (diamonds are a girls’ best friend after all) gently worked its way round my neglected face and I couldn’t help but tested it on my hands and elbows too. My chest got a good seeing to as I watched the filter filling up with dead skin cells. Deep exfoliation and improving skin radiance equals deep satisfaction in my books.

UltradermMD deserves all the praise in the world; my skin feels so smooth and soft (cannot stop touching my face!). Just one treatment was enough to see a difference (seriously). My make up goes on smoother too and I am slowly phasing out foundation. My skin is not to be hidden anymore now the texture is improving with each use. Clear, glowing complexion beats layers of make-up any day. Even my partner noticed a difference and asked to try it (I might be needing more filters soon!).

Another amazing feature of UltradermMD is the pore extraction function. My skin has been getting so clogged with pores becoming visible. The suction tip tackled my unsightly blackheads on the nose with ease. The well-lit magnifying mirror is perfect for this.

The touch screen allows you to choose the treatment mode between 3 different microdermabrasion modes, kinetic toning, or pore extraction.

I was afraid that the instructions were going to baffle me but even as a newbie, I was able to use the beginner setting that guided me step by step. The small screen shows each move clearly and there is a timer, so you don’t get carried away (easily done with rookie excitement).

I am very pale so my skin turns little bit pink after a treatment. But I promise there is zero pain and a lot of gain.

It is incredible to be able to have such a gadget at home. I used to pay so much money for my salon microdermabrasion treatments! Now I can do it at the comfort of my home. This is such a good investment.

In the (wise) words of Trophy Skin:

“Lustrous, youthful skin isn’t out of reach.  It’s just below the surface, hidden by layers of dull and dead skin cells that build up over time.  Firm lifted skin is also in your grasp with UltradermMD.  This unique 3-in-1 system pampers your skin”.

I can honestly say that my skin has never felt THIS CLEAN and all without irritation or pain. This is a pleasant and results driven treatment that can be done from your sofa. It really doesn’t get better than UltradermMD 3-in-1 system.

Available from Current BodyTrophy Skin.co.uk and Amazon £160-250

LADY A – CBD

I am a huge fan of CBD oil, but I am also a brand and packaging snob. Lady A Anytime Tincture 750mg caught my eye; the luxe white bottle endorsed with a gold letter A screams premium. And the delicate orange flavour melts this tincture in my mouth without any bitterness. It is as smooth as the results. The drops deliver calmness and take the edge off my busy mornings and help me relax when going to sleep. Organic, vegan and gluten free, the tincture is a simple and effective way to add CBD to my daily wellness routine.

The handy 15ml bottle with a glass dropper fits into my coat pocket nicely too.

Lady A Anytime Tincture £60

Another amazing product from Lady A range is an Everyday Healing Balm that comes in a pretty glass jar.

I suffer from fibromyalgia which manifests itself with tension in my muscles and causes body pain and fatigue. This creamy 300mg CBD infused balm is heavenly. I rub it into my neck before going to bed. The soothing scent is a marriage of lemongrass and ginger. This magic potion gently warms up my skin and the CBD penetrates deep to target pain and tension. My sleep is deeper too. And of course, I add a drop of Anytime Tincture under my tongue for a double treat.

Lady A Everyday Healing Balm £40