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How to boost PCOS self-esteem


Whether you have or know someone with PCOS, you will most likely be well aware of the impact some PCOS side effects can have on women. Unexplainable weight gain, patchy skin, irregular/painful periods, dry brittle hair that falls like it’s bloody autumn are just a handful of the PCOS symptoms that can damage your self-esteem. Trust me, I’m an expert in this department!

But I’m here to tell you that whilst this may be a rough ride, there are ways you can reclaim your confidence and get back that ‘get-up-and-go’ feeling. In today’s blog, we explore a few ways to boost your self-esteem and be that confident woman you always wanted to be.


What is self-esteem?

Before we begin, we need to first know what self-esteem is. I majored in Psychology back in university and this topic was one of my personal favourites because it was #sorelatable at that time. Anyway, self-esteem underpins your overall sense of self-worth and personal value. In simpler terms, it’s a measure of how much you like and respect yourself. Say for instance, if you have healthy self-esteem, you’re likely to think of yourself in a more positive light and value your achievements to a higher standard than someone with lower self-esteem. Having low self-esteem often means you are overly critical and negative towards yourself, focussing largely on your shortcomings and mistakes. That was basically Me, Negative-Nancy-Narin. I’m glad I have come a longgg way from those dark days, phew!

The correlation between
PCOS and low self-esteem

Let’s get a little technical.

Now, with all the physical and emotional implications that often come along with PCOS, it is easy to understand the link between PCOS and low self-esteem. One major symptom that a lot of women with PCOS struggle with is infertility. It’s a pretty touchy subject for some women who have probably spent countless hours at the doctors just trying to fall pregnant, but never had any successful outcome. Some women in Asia particularly get emotionally scarred from all the unnecessary comments from their families, which often lead them to blame themselves for not being able to bear children. So what follows? Feelings of emptiness, disappointment, depression, isolation and of course, low self-esteem.

Another common physical side effect that affects women with PCOS is weight gain. I can’t tell you how many DMs I have gotten from young girls and ladies who share their weight gain stories with me. What baffles me is the torment and ridicule they face from people around them for gaining weight! I empathise with these women not only because I go through it myself, also because some of them come from really bad situations and probably don’t even know something is not going right in their bodies. I mean, going through all that for years with absolutely no support system? Let that thought sink in.

Ok enough with all the technical jibber-jabber! Again, I want to remind you that PCOS does NOT and should NOT define you. You may have bad days but always remember that there are ways to boost your confidence and empower you to walk through life taller than ever. So, here are some ways you can boost your self-esteem:

a. Positive affirmations work!

When you’re dealing with PCOS, being told to be positive might come across as a little annoying. Like you just want to slap that person (who probably isn’t going through what you are) for just saying things without even thinking, right? However, there is an effective way to challenge and overcome pessimistic thought patterns and this is by doing it yourself FOR yourself. It’s just simple positive affirmations that you think of yourself, which can reinforce feelings of self-love and belief. Here are some examples of affirmations you could say to yourself on a daily basis:

  1. I believe in myself.
  2. I acknowledge the great qualities and talents I possess ( such as I’m a great public speaker, I am an honest person, I make people laugh etc)
  3. I surround myself with positive people who bring the best out in me. (which also means you HAVE to eliminate ALL the toxic people from your life because they are no good for your self growth)
  4. I let go of the negative feelings and opinions I have about myself. (No more ‘I am a worthless piece of shit’ and ‘I don’t deserve to have a man/woman in my life’ kinda nonsense!
  5. I love and cherish who I’ve become. For all my achievements, my struggles, my past and my mistakes for making me this person I am today.

b. Acknowledge and embrace yourself

This is in no way correlating to PCOS, but more focusing on your inner self. Ok, in order to embrace yourself, you have to take the initiative to acknowledge yourself first. I learnt this through a few amazing people I know (God bless them!) when I was down and out. And I’m going to share them with you ladies!

Key words: Dig deep. Set aside some time for yourself. Make some tea, sit down with a piece of paper or open Microsoft Word if you’re the tech-y type. List down the traits you possess and the roles you play in life. Ask yourself, are you creative? Smart? Funny? Are you a sister? A daughter? A friend? In order to get in touch with your inner-self, you have to make an identity list by beginning your sentences with “I am” followed by your traits.

Then comes the slightly harder part. You have to ask yourself what you value, what you stand for, and what brings you joy (sorta like you Marie Kondo-ing yourself). After you are done with the list, reread it and take a look at yourself and the qualities you bring to the table. Don’t hold back.  Taking one step away and seeing ourselves through these unconditionally loving eyes, without the self-talk that brings us down can be a revelation.

c. Challenge yourself

If there’s an activity you’ve always wanted to do, now is the time to take that leap of faith! Yes – this can seem scary if you’re struggling with confidence, and yes – it’s easier to find a million and one excuses not to do it, but the simple act of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone can work wonders for your self-esteem. It will demonstrate that you can achieve extraordinary things once you put your mind to it. Say if you always wanted to go to the beach wearing a nice fitted swimwear, do it. Find yourself a swimsuit that enhances your curves, put it on and go swimming! It is confronting at first, but once you’ve done it once, the second time is always easier. Don’t hold back on adventure and doing what you want to do because you worry about someone else’s opinion about you. It is NOT worth it!


d. Stay productive

Sometimes, a person may go through a stagnant phase in their lives, whereby that person feels hopeless and demotivated to do anything. Pair those feelings with PCOS and you’ve got yourself a great way to spiral downwards. In order to avoid being in this SHITuation as I call it, it is best to always keep yourself busy. Stay productive by working, studying, volunteering or do anything that keeps your mind working, because this can directly bolster your self-esteem and belief. Productivity can bring positive value to your life by instilling purpose, routine, structure and an opportunity to socialise with other people – key components that will help strengthen your confidence. 


e. Keep the radiator & lose the drain!

As Oprah’s saying goes: people fall into two categories – radiators and drains. Radiators ooze warmth, kindness, love, happiness and enthusiasm. They smile when you walk into a room, are genuinely interested in others and make you feel good about yourself. Basically, radiators bring out the very best in people. God knows how much I love people who radiate love and positivity!

Drains, on the other hand, drain your energy and leave you feeling diminished. Drains are toxic, often self-absorbed, demanding and will take without ever giving anything back. I do have people like this in my life who I can’t really avoid but I do whatever it takes to stay far from them because I don’t need that kind of negativity in my life, I already have enough going on!

So, try to nurture relationships with positive people who support you and understand your condition, as they will help carve out your confidence.


f. Self-care & balance is fundamental

It’s the kind of advice we hear time and again, but it’s especially important for women with PCOS to always look after yourself. The basics : nutrition, sleep and exercise form the pillars of self-care, and all three will somehow help regulate your PCOS symptoms and boost your confidence. Eat wholesome foods and have that occasional chocolate, drink lots of water and healthy teas, work out at least 3 times a week or if you’re a busy bee, just go for a 30 minutes walk every day to keep that body active. Treat yourself to a relaxing holiday to unwind and recharge because it is absolutely important to have a balance in life, PCOS or not.


g. Get support!

We understand that PCOS can be tough, so don’t forget to reach out for support if you need it. Here are some avenues you might consider exploring:

  • Mindfulness & meditation/relaxation: this practice can help you focus on the present, and become more in tune with your thoughts and feelings. I personally swear by this app called Headspace which helps me relax and put all my day’s troubles away for 5-10 minutes and just have me-time. It’s also a great tool for people with anxiety and overworked individuals. There are of course other apps that you can try. The key is to find the best one that suits your needs.
  • Peer support: talking to others with PCOS can provide some reassuring guidance and advice. Some social media platforms like Instagram has many PCOS bloggers who share their lives and PCOS life hacks, even go as far as to help with PCOS diets and share healthy recipes! I have made some really great PCOS “cyster” friends and we help each other cope with the daily grind. There are also online communities and forums can also be an excellent place to gather support if you prefer keep your identity private.
  • Speak to a professional: If things get too much and you find yourself feeling depressed, you can discuss any concerns you have with a health or medical profession such as counsellor or psychologist. Don’t be discouraged by people around you telling you that you don’t need help. Nobody knows how you feel except yourself, girl!


PCOS can affect all aspects of life including your self-esteem, but trying at least one of these tips can help you feel more positively about yourself. The good news is that you can bolster your confidence by implementing simple, holistic lifestyle changes. Yes – it will take some effort and daily care, but the result is so worth it.

That’s all for today! I hope you found this blog helpful. If you have PCOS, I urge you to gather all your inner strength to move forward. And if you are blessed with good health, please be supportive towards your friend/family member who may be going through any sort of health or mental issues.

Have a lovely week y’all!

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What 2018 taught me

HAPPY NEW YEAR Lovelies!!

2018 was a crazy year of ups and downs for me. From putting my idea of starting my own curvy fashion line to play to losing a major work contract due to negligence from my part, 2018 was indeed a mind-blowing adventure. I must say, I learnt so much about myself and my surroundings last year. I’m sharing what I learnt with hopes to inspire you to have the best year ahead!

Things don’t always happen when I want them to

One of the biggest lessons I learnt in 2018 was that despite careful plans put in motion, sometimes things just don’t happen when you most expect it to. I learnt this lesson the hard way. For instance, my husband and I worked so hard to get a few work contracts but because of the recent change of ruling government, all our hard work was thrown out the window in a flash. We didn’t get the contracts, we cried, we were bitter but we knew that life had to move on. And that is just one instance. So, I believe now that patience is an effing virtue. You work hard, be patient and things will happen for you, somehow.

Step outside my comfort zone

Trust me when I tell you this. I am in the initial stages of planning for my curvy fashion line and I honestly have no clue what I am doing. But I am doing things slowly, learning what different fabrics are for, how one piece of cloth looks different on various body shapes. It is never easy and quite frankly, sometimes annoying when I don’t understand something. But, I learnt that everything happens just outside your comfort zone.  This project I am working on challenges me, and I am starting easy and building on that. So, slightly push yourself on a regular basis so you don’t become stagnant.  When you do, build your character and inch closer to what you want to achieve.

Be grateful for everything that I have

Even though 2018 was a little difficult, it could always be a lot worse. I have to be grateful for all the wonderful things I do have in my life because, in the past, I used to hope and dream for these very things. Sometimes we can get caught in this trap of always wanting more or wanting what we don’t have and this can really destroy our happiness. I’m very lucky in so many ways, for being married to an incredible guy and blessed with good friends and family. We can afford to live a comfortable life and get our Latte fixes and Sephora hauls whenever we want to. I’m healthy, I am happy being in business with my husband that we get to work on my own terms. Man, I can go on because there is just so much to be grateful for. So guys and girls, it is so easy to be envious looking at what others have and you don’t, but just stop for a second and alter your train of thought to all the good that’s happening in your life. You will change the way you think, trust me.

Be money savvy

I was taught to value money from a young age. My mother used to only give me enough to buy a meal at the school canteen. I grew up learning that saving is a priority and that I must save even as little as 50 cents a day just to see it grow. Of course, when I grew older, things weren’t as easy anymore with all the mortgages and bill payments. Money is an extremely stressful concept. But it doesn’t always have to be. Budget your money and watch how you are spending it. Make sure your priorities are in line and only splurge on that Gucci bag if you have already allocated enough for the necessary stuff! True story: a few years ago, I made a blunder when I bought a slightly expensive item without thinking about my pending payments. Urgh, that shit was harsh when I had to return it to the store! So my advice, be smart enough to decide between saving your money or spending it on a material you don’t need.

Celebrate YOU

I have struggled for God-knows how long with my self-confidence. Ever since I started becoming more active on Instagram with the whole #bodypositive posts, I am not only helping other curvy girls with their self confidence, but I am helping ME get over this whole body-shaming rubbish that I have been struggling with. Putting yourself down and negative self-talk comes easy, and you forget all the small wins you have under your belt. If you set a goal of not eating junk food and kept up with it for a week, give yourself a treat for that! If you finished your assignment before time, reward yourself with that dress you’ve been eyeing! This practice focuses your mind on the positive things you’ve done and reframes your thinking. When you focus on the small wins you build momentum which carries over in all areas of life.

My path will change and it’s OK

I have a degree in Psychology and I thought I would be working in a hospital and talk people out of their depression. Instead, I went into business with my husband. And now, I’m working on starting my own business! I mean, how the hell did I just wake up one day and think of a bright idea like building a curvy fashion brand when I run to my Mom for help to sew a loose button?!! It sounds insane, it’s probably insane but I’m doing it nonetheless! If you have a job that you hate or are stuck in a shitty relationship, get out of it and find a better one! Don’t stick to it just to be consistent. You have the right to leave the path you’re on and go toward a new direction, darling.

It’s not my job to take action for other people

This year, I had a rude awakening of how some family members can turn out to be the most toxic people in my life. My husband and I helped as much as we could but in the end, we became the bad guys. What I learnt from this whole Bollywood drama is that even if you only want good for someone, only they can take action to improve their lives (or in the Bollywood drama that we starred in, destroy their lives). Even if it is painful to be treated this way, i am (still) learning to not take people’s mean actions to me personally. So, just focus on building yourself and don’t force relationships that are one-sided cause it will only end up hurting you. We don’t want that now, do we?

Notice the little things

I know I probably sound like a wannabe guru but I like taking notice of my surroundings. Notice how people smile at you, notice the waiter’s new haircut, notice how happy or sad someone feels, notice how your friend progressed on her weight loss journey, notice how your Mom prepares dinner, notice how a stranger opens up a door for another stranger, notice how a father will quietly put the good chicken pieces on his daughter’s plate. Just take notice all these little acts of kindness. It’s everywhere, it’s beautiful and it’s good for the soul.

Make time for myself

Living in KL or any city in the world can be super busy and stressful. You have work, a family to look after, a spouse to please, friends to see, people to meet and traffic to be stuck in. All these commitments can leave you with an emotional/mental strain. My life is not too crazy but I do have moments when everything happens all at once and that just drives me insane! I came up with a solution to my problem of constantly feeling overwhelmed – I schedule time-outs for myself to do something I enjoy.  I usually randomly cook a meal, giving myself just that 1-2 hours of peace without speaking to anyone, to work my mind to build the recipe, to try new dishes (and the food usually turns out bloody good!). I also use the “Headspace” app to meditate and just be in my zone for a few minutes. These are just my ways of de-stressing and enjoying my me-time. So, think of something that you will enjoy as a me-time activity and do it! I’m sure you will come back fresh as a mug!

I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it. I could go on, but I think these few lessons can help me (and hopefully my readers) enough to brave this new year. 

Please feel free to list some of your life lessons in the comments section as it would be great to learn what others have learnt from their 2018. I hope you all have an amazing 2019 and keep that positivity going people!

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Steps to build self confidence

Imagine what life would be if we could stand before the mirror and focus on what we cherish about ourselves rather than what we wish we could change

It seems that a lot of times, most of us turn to negative thinking, paying attention to our so- called flaws. We are not only bombarded with pictures of famous people and “perfect” models on TV, magazines and billboards, even the app we refresh every possible chance we get – Instagram – can be a major culprit. Constantly feeding us with aesthetically-pleasing pictures of “perfect” people living their “perfect” lives, who have most likely gone through layers of filter to curate that perfection. And the result? A never ending supply of edited images and a load of viewers feeling inadequate and self-conscious in their own skin.

And just like that, you have endless unrealistic expectations you have to fulfill. What we should look like, the latest designer items we have to own, the tiny bikinis we have to start fitting into, the lavish lifestyles we have to start living! As technology advances and we’re more connected to the world wide web than ever, it seems that our self esteem is rapidly declining. My nerdy self has read a few articles on this topic and what I found is that there is a definite link between social media usage and low self esteem. It literally takes a person seconds on Instagram to feel rubbish about themselves. For instance, you can be on your feed and next thing you know you’re on your ex-boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend’s best friend’s page wishing you had abs as solid as hers. (true story bro!)

To top it all, many of us have internalised negative comments from our past that has stuck like glue in our heads. We’re more likely to remember one negative comment from a first-class asshole than we are to remember all the wonderful compliments. In my case, I’ll always remember when this moron told me I need to “make” a thigh gap, but I don’t remember when someone told me I have the nicest hair she has seen!

Building your self esteem takes work. If you have very poor body image, it can take years to repair. Why not start now? There are so many things you can do to build yourself up and undo a lifetime of low self esteem. So, here are a few tips I learnt to slowly come out of that bad phase and start my #selflove journey, and I hope I can help someone out there too!

Nobody is 100% perfect

What is the meaning of “flawless”? How does one measure “flawlessness”? When you ask yourself these questions, chances are, you won’t be able to think of a definite answer because “flawless” does not exist in the human race. It is merely an misogynistic idea than it is a reality!
Aiming for perfection will only let a person down because when you don’t achieve that perfect goal, you will be left feeling miserable. So, the next time you flip through a Cosmopolitan mag or click on the “explore” tab on Instagram, please do yourself a favour and take everything with a pinch of salt. Try not to get too caught up in it. If you’re feeling low about yourself, it might be a good idea to have a social media detox/cleanse! 

Appreciate You

I know this part takes time and effort, but I guarantee you, it works! When you have some free time, take note of everything you like about yourself and write it down. When you’re feeling rubbish about yourself, revisit the list to remind yourself of all your wonderful and positive attributes. As your self esteem improves, you might find more of yourself that you have started to notice and love. See the correlation here? 

Confidence stems from you

Nothing bad happens when people compliment others. do allow yourself to accept compliments from people but don’t let this be your main source of confidence. Ultimately, confidence is going to come from within you. Sure, it’s nice to have reassurance from others that you look good, but you want to look and feel good from within and that means you have to do certain things to make yourself feel that way! The one thing that I have been doing is to set standards for myself and to catch myself when I think I’m not good enough, I can’t have, won’t get or aren’t good enough to get what I want. When that happens, I tell myself that my mindset is everything and so, gotta stay positive and dynamic!It’s not easy, but it is do-able!

Take Care of You

I know I have been slacking in this department lately, but this tip here is so effective in making you feel good about yourself. Move your body regularly and eat healthily. Working out and setting goals can help you feel great both physically and mentally. A balanced diet is key, as well. That being said, you shouldn’t compulsively over-exercise or obsessively count calories. Even though my PCOS and Hypothyroidism limit me from eating all that yummy carbs by the loads, I still occasionally indulge because what’s life without greasy fries and chocolate brownies! It’s tough to balance, but try to focus on the internal benefits of a healthy lifestyle rather than the external ones.

Conclusion: I learned to love myself, and in turn, developed a better body image than I’ve ever had before just by trying and executing these few steps. There’s no reason why you can’t too!

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Anniversary getaway

3 years married

We still can’t believe we have been married for 3 years! 3 YEARS! This feels like a dream!

I mean, it has been mostly great and “adventurous” as some might say, but there have been times we want to rip out each others’ heads! So we pretty much have a “well-balanced” marriage LOL!

Anyhoo, I know I have been quiet lately due to a bloody hectic schedule, I thought I’d share some pictures we took on this wonderful trip and of course, some travel tips!

Hoi An, Vietnam

We stayed in Hoi An for a total of 5 nights and 6 days, and this what went down:

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Let’s start off with some cheesy #twinning shots, shall we?

 

  The beautiful and magnificent structures in the Ancient City of Hoi An.

The town comprises a well-preserved complex of 1,107 timber frame buildings, with brick or wooden walls, which include architectural monuments, commercial and domestic vernacular structures, notably an open market and a ferry quay, and religious buildings such as pagodas and family cult houses. The houses are tiled and the wooden components are carved with traditional motifs.  They are arranged side-by-side in tight, unbroken rows along narrow pedestrian streets.

 

Our little boutique villa – the Hoi An Silk Village Resort & Spa – was (we think) the best choice we made for our 6 day stay. This lovely resort is set in a tranquil garden surroundings and has a peaceful ambience.  The rooms are spacious, clean, comfortable and tastefully decorated.

 

 

 

 

Your trip is incomplete without taking a million pictures at these mustardy yellow walls that are everywhere inside and outside the Ancient city!

 

It will amaze you that when you search for the “best Banh Mi in Vietnam” or the “best Banh Mi in the world, Google will direct you to this place – Banh Mi Phuong – Made famous by the late Anthony Bourdain, who claimed that the Banh Mi served here is a symphony in a sandwich, we had to give this place a try!

Tender, caramelised pork and slices of creamy pate, sandwiched in a crusty baguette with the crunch of salad, a spicy sauce and a sweet-salty mix of Vietnamese flavours I’d never experienced before, it really was a taste sensation!

 

We had dinner at all of the 3 Morning Glory restaurant branches because we loved it so much!! Just look at that yummy goodness!! The Lemongrass chicken skewers were to die for! As usual, we had to ask for extra spiciness, and to our surprise, they had a very tasty shrimp-y “sambal” that gave that kick! Guess who asked for an extra bowl of Vietnamese “sambal”?

 

 

It’s such a pity that we only discovered the best place for Com Ga – Vietnamese version of chicken rice – on the second last day! Such a plain-looking dish, but don’t let it fool you. This dish is packed with flavors and we loved every single bite we took!

 

Took us a while to get adjusted, but we got the hang of riding these bikes very quickly. BUT since we already rented a bike, we ditched the idea of riding the bicycles around!

 

We also visited the Marble Mountain in Da Nang, about 45 minutes bike ride from Hoi An. The mountains are comprised of five limestone hills from the surrounding village, each riddled with caves and grottos, with some made into pagodas and shrines. The top offers spectacular views of Da Nang and the surrounding mountains. A better vantage point is reached through a small hole at the top Heaven’s cave, with the views including Non Nuoc beach, the Son Tra Peninsula and Cham Islands. But we were sooooo tired that day after a dauntingly long journey to and back from the Hai Van Pass that we gave up halfway. Off we went back to the hotel.

 

 

 

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Hair care tips for gorgeous hair!

Hello my lovely friends!

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Most of my friends and followers know that I have PCOS and hypothyroidism, which causes my hair to act up, misbehave and occasionally go wild when my hormones kick in (or out). Ever since I started blogging on CurvyKaur, many of you had asked me how I look after the crazy mane I have on my head. One day (possibly the day the crazy hormones kicked in, yet again), it hit me – I should write a blog post on hair care!

So here it is, a more detailed version of the steps I take to ensure I keep my hair tame, frizz-free and beaut!

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I know, I know, this is a tough one to avoid for all you styling queens! Unfortunately for those who love a good blow dry and glam feels, I have bad news for ya! Blow-drying not only fries your hair by damaging the hair cuticles, it also causes breakage that leads to ugly split ends. However, if you absolutely HAVE to use a curling iron, hair straightener or any other heat tools, I suggest using a good heat protector to prevent as much damage as possible. I invested in the Schwarzkopf Guardian Angel 220°C Heat Protection Spray, used it a few times, kept it away, and forgot all about it – because I hardly ever use any styling tools on my hair. Bottom line is – Air-drying is the best!!!

Hair Serum

All of us can’t avoid using styling tools forever, but we can keep our hair as healthy as possible. An important step is to always apply serum after each hair wash, blow drying, curling, or straightening your hair. These nutrient-packed serums come in many different brands and they can be found at any pharmacy or drug store. The hair serum that was recommended to me by a dear friend and also the serum that I absolutely love is the Alterna Caviar Anti-Aging Omega Nourishing Hair Oil.

Image result for sephora alterna caviar omega nourishing oil

Colour chemicals 

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I recently got my hair coloured after 3 years of dye-detox. I think I regret it a little now that my hair is a little dry and not as healthy looking as it was before. Truth is, hair dye has tons of harsh chemicals that can damage your hair (as it did mine), and if done too often it’s nearly impossible to repair that damage. If you are willing, stick to your natural hair colour. But if you insist on revamping your hair colour, don’t go crazy like the Kardashian sisters changing their hair colour to suit their OOTDs! Another important note, you should practice colour care and treatment after dyeing your hair, or you will end up with hair that looks like dried grass on your head, and we don’t want that, do we? Just consult your hairstylist on the various types of hair treatment and they will advice you to do the one that suits the nature of your hair. 

Wash when necessary

God knows how many times I have gotten the look of dismay from people when I tell them my standard hair wash protocol is twice a week, thrice when I work out and sweat like a mofo. Unless you have a naturally oily scalp or you sweat profusely after exercise, you only need to wash your hair every other day or a few times a week. Washing your hair everyday strips the natural oils that make our hair healthy and beautiful. Of course, if your hair feels like it’s greasy and needs a wash, give it a wash. You don’t need to stick to a strict schedule, just play by how your hair reacts to the weather, physical activity, hair products applied and your gross level of laziness (me) LOL! 

No hot water!

I cannot stress this point enough! Ever since I was a teenager, my mother nagged me countless times to never wash my hair using hot water. I guess this advice grew on me after all those years! See, hot water can actually strip your hair of protective oils that serve as a natural conditioner. I’ll tell you the 3 main reasons why I only wash my hair with cool or lukewarm water (on colder days): 

  • Locks in moisture and smooths out my hair – Bye-bye dull hair!
  • Shinier and softer hair – Who doesn’t love a good dose of healthy shine?
  • Reduced frizz, fly-aways, and breakage
  • Cools my head in this hot weather, kind of like a ‘de-stress’ of some sort. 

Condition the right way

A huge mistake I made for the longest time was applying conditioner all over my hair from root to tip, until I learnt that doing so creates a lot of residue buildup on your scalp, which is not very good for your hair, obviously. So, just apply conditioner from the mid-length to the ends of your hair, leave it on while you do other things like shave and sing in the shower, and then wash the conditioner off after 2-3 minutes. 

Trim away the fly-aways

Ok, I don’t have the time to trim my hair every other month. I only drag myself to the hair salon when my hair starts to drag down my face and look dead. (Please do not follow my footsteps). In humid Asian countries like Malaysia, our hair is very prone to split ends, so going long periods of time without trimming your hair can cause the hair to look damaged, out of shape and unhealthy. Try to get your hair trimmed every 2 months or so, and if you are really prone to split ends and unruly hair, trim your hair every 5-6 weeks.

Go natural!

There are a ton of hair products you can buy to improve the quality of your hair. But it is always better to use natural ingredients, and some of the best things for your hair can be found in your pantry. Personally, I oil my hair once a month and it has proven to be the best way to keep my hair healthy. Some of the oils I use are:

  • Olive oil: Great moisturiser for dry hair – Apply to your hair overnight, then shampoo as usual.
  • Coconut oil: An amazing natural conditioner – Apply to your hair overnight, then shampoo as usual.
  • Castor oil: Overall, the best remedy for beautiful hair in my opinion -Apply to your hair overnight, then shampoo as usual.

 

So, there you have it, my hair care tips! Do share with me your hair care routine and tips. I would love to know what you guys do to keep your hair healthy and beautiful! Happy rest of the week, beautiful people!! 

Much Love,

NB

 

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12 Curvy Girl Struggles

I have been curvy/plus size most of my life and I have certainly come to love me the way I am. I secretly do at times wish I was a couple of sizes smaller (only for the sake of wearing nice clothes that fit well), but at the same time, many girls wish they had my curves! I’ll have to admit, being curvy is actually pretty darn AWESOME!

I consider myself blessed to be curvy, but living in this body comes with some struggles. So, if you are a curvy girl wanting to know if someone else shares your big girl qualms, or if you are not on the curvy side but don’t mind a little insight (and a little laugh) as to how we curvy girls do it, read on:

1. Nothing fits you well.

If it fits you well on the arms, it might be too tight at the waist. Sometimes, the pants might fit well at the waist, but it will be too short because your big ass pulled everything up! I once tried on a beautiful blouse with lovely prints but I couldn’t purchase it because it couldn’t even go down my boobs! Imagine my frustration at that time, knowing that blouse was the biggest size available in that shop!

2. Forever 21 what?

You can shop at large retails like HnM, Forever 21 and Zara only in your dreams. In Malaysia and other Asian countries, it’s like winning a lottery if you manage to snag yourself some nice clothes that fit well from these retail outlets! I mean, most of their clothes go up to size UK 16 max, how rude!

3. Online shopping is a breeze. Not.

Forget shopping online. Don’t even bother with their sizing charts because those charts tell lies. I once purchased a dress online by trusting their sizing chart and I was shocked when I received my order. The dress looked like it could only fit my neighbour’s 13-year-old daughter. So, if you are curvy/plus size and feeling adventurous to shop online, be prepared to order two sizes and return the one that least fits (that too, if they accept returns and exchanges)

4. Sexbomb all day

Instantly turn a decent outfit into something “sexy” or “slutty”. Even a basic loose dress may look like a bodycon dress on a curvy body. We are only left with two choices when it comes to outfits: Either we wear huge sweaters that make us look like 3,895 kilos OR wear a basic dress and walk around in broad daylight looking like Salma Hayek ready for a fiesta!

5. Stretch is porno

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Ask any curvy/plus size girl about stretchy jeans and jeggings and you will hear her rave on about it for hours. Trust me, non-stretchy jeans and denim are a big no-no for girls with bigger everything. Personally, I survive on stretchy jeans and comfy jeggings. Also, jeggings are god-sent for those bloated and “fat” days because they hug the extras and don’t make us feel like somebody is squeezing the life out of us!

6. Tugging is cardio

Denim shorts look like underwear on us. Not only do we show off more than what we are comfortable showing, we also suffer crazy thigh chafing caused by repetitive friction. No amount of baby powder or deodorant stick can help. oh, and dare i forget the arm workout we do to tug our shorts down a thousand times when they ride up?

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Speaking of tugging, let’s talk strapless bra.  Strapless bras and big boobs don’t get along, ever! Our boobs are too heavy for bras that don’t have any support.  Even though we buy our perfect fit and size, it never properly fits and we look idiotic trying to reposition our bra every two minutes.

7. No clothes sharing

Like one of your friend’s outfit? Feel like borrowing your friend’s clothes for a date? Forget about it. Chances are they won’t fit because none of your friends are the same size as you are. Also, you risk stretching your friend’s clothes out so just stick to your own closet and deal with it gurl!

8. Hello Jiggly Puff

Imagine running on the treadmill and with a bagful of rocks attached to your butt and boobs. That’s how we feel when we run and it is mortifying. Not only is running harder for us, we cannot help the not-so-graceful jiggle that follow. But we are absolutely cool (not) with it and will continue to try to jiggle away our coat of cellulite.

9. Ass-ets in your face

Our bulging assets don’t usually allow for tight manoeuvring through chairs and tables. We literally say a silent prayer before walking through small spaces because we know we risk hitting something or someone. Going to the movies require some planning – like toilet visit before the movie and limited soda intake – so you don’t pull a mid-movie pee break and graze your butt into people’s faces on you way out.

10. All about the Bass

We don’t fancy being associated with “fat” girl songs. Thanks to Meghan Trainor and Nicki Minaj for their song contents, we get THAT look from everyone when their songs play because they expect you to dance like you own the song! Rappers are constantly trying to tell you what to do with your ass – drop it low, back that ass up and what have you these day. Thanks for the compliments but no, I don’t like “Anaconda” and I will not twerk for you dickwits.

11. Boob emergencies

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I carry safety pins in my bag and my car for boob-gap fashion emergencies. See, button-down shirts always pop open at the boob area, giving viewers a good sight of our cleavage (sometimes we walk around flashing our boobs the whole day without knowing). If we curvy girls want to avoid this problem from happening, we’ll have to get a size up. But this also means we now look like we borrowed our Grandpa’s shirt to work.

12. Spanx me silly

Almost every girl I know dislike wearing Spanx or shape wear. We curvy/plus size girls HATE them. Although shape wear works like magic to tuck in all the loose chunky bits, wearing it suffocates us, makes us uncomfortable, unexpectedly rolls out and creates a very visible line. Last but not least,  wearing Spanx require acrobatic skills when using the bathroom. But we still suck it in and do it anyway, cuz ain’t nobody got time for fat rolls!

So there you have it! The struggle is real for me and all the other curvy/ plus size girls out there but truth be told, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love my body, wonderful curves and all, and ultimately I love ME.

Her curves aren’t a curse.

Her body’s a blessing.

Her thighs are thunder and her hips are heaven. 

To those of you who share the same kind of struggles or have other struggles that you want to share, do comment and we can have a chat!

 

 

 

 

 

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My PCOS story

Since my blog is everything to do with living life as a plus size / curvy / in-betweenie woman, I thought I’ll be open about my journey with PCOS. This is because I know so many women out there suffer similarly as I do, and some are not even aware that they have PCOS. So, without further ado, let’s dive right in!

WHAT IS PCOS?

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is an endocrine (hormonal) disorder affecting roughly 5-10% of women out there.  Symptoms of PCOS include acne, obesity, hair loss, amenorrhea (lack of periods), excessive hair in unwanted areas, infertility, erratic mood swings, ovarian cysts and trouble losing weight.  This invisible illness also causes major health problems, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, endometrial cancer and insulin resistance.

In my case, I struggle with almost everything mentioned above, with an added disorder – Hypothyroidism (Click to read more)

Talk about a double combo!

MY PCOS STORY

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When I was diagnosed with Polycystic-Ovarian Syndrome, I thought my life was over. I thought I would gain even more weight than I had, have a face covered in acne for the rest of my life, and never be able to bear children. Being the hypochondriac that I am, I felt trapped by this unknown “disease” determined on ruining my life, which resulted in the anxiety that I am still battling today!

Let’s rewind to when I first found out I had PCOS.

That first day I cried, and I cried and I cried even more.  My Gynae spent an hour just schooling scaring me on the drastic changes I had to make in order to regulate this disorder that was going to change my life. She mentioned scary words like ‘cancer’ and ‘IVF’ which got me thinking of the worst at that moment.

Once reality hit me, I was mad that I had to change my diet.  I’m a huge food lover and I thought it was bloody unfair that I had to cut down STOP eating food that others got to enjoy so easily. I was envious of people around me who could eat any carb and sugary food that they pleased and my “treat” was going to be greek yoghurt with sliced fruit (ew). I also found it so frustrating that my friends could lose weight so easily when I would torture myself at the gym and still not shed any weight.I was also tormented with fear – fear of not having kids, fear of my husband (then boyfriend) leaving me for my wild mood swings, fear of having those crazy diseases, and of course fear of not living the life I was comfortable with. All of this contributed to my anxiety and mild erratic attitude change.

Now that’s a load of negative emotions! But even though it sounds like it was a rough period of time for me only, but truth is, it also was a rough period for my nearest and dearest people. I am absolutely thankful that I got the support I needed from my husband, family and friends because these wonderful people re-adjusted their ‘system’ for me to make sure I knew that I was not alone fighting this battle. My mother stocked up on brown rice for the days I would eat at my parent’s house and she also made delicious healthy dishes just for me (God bless that woman). My friends knew my dietary requirements so they would opt to hang out at restaurants that catered to my diet meals. They also understood my need for ‘time-out’ moments after I explained how tough it is to deal with all the changes I was making and that I needed my solitary time to just relax. Even with all the bitch fits I was throwing, I would find random encouraging notes stuck on my door!

I remember those random days I felt miserable about my situation but somehow I managed to get through it with the help of my loved ones. I stopped comparing my life with others because that was leading to more misery.  I turned my emotions around and decided to be positive.

Now, I’m not going to lie and say it’s been an easy journey and that I don’t suffer bad days.  I defo do! And sometimes that feeling of emptiness is unbearable.  At the beginning of my journey, I would even tell my husband that he should leave me and find a woman who could give him kids!  I no longer do that because, well what an idiot I was! On the upside of things, my husband and I have become a stronger and more understanding couple because of this challenge we face.

Despite those random days I have had, I can say I mostly feel proud of myself for taking care of my body. I don’t do it all the time and sometimes fail (i’m only human and humans have wants and needs!). Though I haven’t lost the weight I want to, I’ve remained stable. Every day I make choices about what is best for my health.  I no longer obsess about what I put in my mouth as I do allow myself to splurge on greasy fatty food here and there. Ultimately, my goal is to feed my body nutritious foods that will regulate insulin and prepare my body for when I want to get pregnant in the near future.

I know that it may still be hard, but with time, I know making healthy choices will become easier. So far these few years of eating healthy, mixed with some ups and downs, have done more good than harm to me. So I thought sharing some tips on how I cope with PCOS would help some of you.

Here are a few tips I use to help me kick PCOS in the butt:-

1. Green tea-licious!

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Japanese Green Tea :      a must-have in my pantry

Green tea is a must for me, and I drink it religiously after dinner. I personally prefer Japanese Green tea because of the robust flavour, but any green tea is good. Green tea is loaded with powerful antioxidants and rich in a compound called L-theanine, known to reduce anxiety and soothe the mind. Green tea is also known to help burn fats more effectively and ever since I started drinking green tea on a daily basis, I found that my digestion was better and quicker, possibly helping in the burning of carbs I eat too!

One of the most important benefit of green tea for PCOS is that it improves insulin sensitivity because insulin resistance is the key cause of this hormonal condition. So, to keep those insulin drops at bay, drink more green tea! All in all, green tea is loaded with healthy nutrients that I had to make drinking it a part of my daily night routine!

Side note:I also have started drinking lemon and ginger tea as an afternoon sip for a while now. This tea blend has done wonders for my digestion as well as improved my complexion!

2. Work that body!

Ok,ok! I’ll admit it! I hardly exercise these days and although I have a ton of reasons for skipping exercise, it is all excuses basically! However, I do substitute it with more walking. I opt to walk up and down stairs instead of taking the lift, and I sometimes would park my car further away just to walk a little extra. Oh, I also do squats when i wake up!

Anyway, exercise is very important for counteracting weight gain, a common symptom for people with PCOS. The combo of PCOS and weight gain can result in diabetes, heart diseases, sleep difficulties and all kinds of cancer, to name a few. With just 20 minutes of exercise a few times weekly, you can drastically reduce your chances of these fatal health issues.

3. Oh Sweet Sugar!

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Ice-cream solves everything!

Don’t get me started on this topic. I go through my day dreaming of indulging in endless supply of chocolate and ice cream and pudding and Stroopwafels and cakes!

But the sad reality is that people suffering from PCOS are insulin resistant, making diabetes a potential danger disease in our lives. By omitting processed sugars, we can decrease our blood sugar levels drastically, which also helps us cope with weight gain, severe acne, anxiety and depression and other annoying side effects.

What do I do to curb those sweet tooth pangs? Firstly, I use a reward system. I occasionally reward myself with an unhealthy sweet indulgence, which is a way I guilt-trip myself into refraining sugar the rest of the week. I also substitute unhealthy stuff with healthier options, such as dark chocolate, fruits and juices. At first it may be the hardest thing to do but as soon as you see results, you will be game on with the substitution trick, trust me!

4. Dude, where’s my carbs?

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How can one possibly resist Nachos and Guac?

Nasi lemak, Pizza, beer, greasy fries, KFC!!!! I want them all!

But sadly carbs can work against insulin resistance just as much as sugar does. But this doesn’t mean one has to give up on carbs altogether! Using the same substitution method to reduce sugar intake, I reduce my empty carb intake by eating brown rice, whole wheat pasta, couscous and other surprisingly delicious foods that are actually good for PCOS women.

All of these sounds so difficult to do at first, but becoming innovative with recipes is fun and when the food you cooked turns out great, it’s the greatest feeling ever! Believe me, some of my recipe innovations turned out better than using unhealthy options. Oh, and my husband who is quite fussy with food, seems to be ok with “healthier” options too, so that is a definite plus point!

You, yes, YOU!

If you are a woman with PCOS reading this, please know that you are not alone.  Educate yourself about PCOS and do what you can to look after you.  Though there is no way to get rid of it, you are able control PCOS.  If you want to lose weight or get pregnant, please don’t give up on your first few tries, instead, opt to try different methods if all else fail.

Also, talk about it! I made sure I talked about it with someone.  Though most of my dear ones didn’t understand, they sure listened. Try to lift yourself up in whatever way you know (exercise, spending quality time with family, vacations etc). Talk to your boyfriend/partner/husband about it because trust me, it is also hard for them to understand so just take the time to explain to them how they can help.

Before i end, I would like to remind my fellow cyst-ers this:

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If you are going through a similar situation, I’d love to hear about it!

So let’s talk!

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