Things people don’t understand unless they wear contact lenses…

I’ve had many conversations with people who have perfect vision about contact lenses and there is so much of this world that they just do not understand. And lucky for them… about contact lenses and there is so much of this world that they just do not understand…

Taking off make-up is a nightmare.

You have to take your contact lenses out first, or you’ll scrub them a) out b) to the back of your eyeball if you attempt to rub your mascara or eyeshadow off whilst wearing them. So you have to try and remove them first. Good luck. The amount of mascara some of us wear means getting past our almost solid eyelashes to fish out this little disc of vision. On top of this, if you don’t wear dailies – you’ve got to get all the residual make-up off the aforementioned lens before storing it away for an overnight soak.

Putting them in water seems like a good idea

I have done this on occasion – particularly if I’m somewhere where I know I need to be able to drive myself home the next day (or frankly make it home under my own steam using any other method of transport other than being delivered back to my door – yes, I am that blind). However, my friends – a married couple who are an optician and ophthalmologist respectively – recoiled in horror when I told them this. Apparently there is some horrific water-borne bug that if it gets trapped between your eye and lens…well, bad things happen.

Falling asleep watching with your lenses in is AGONY

You’re curled up watching a movie, your eyes get heavy, you wake up half an hour later feeling like the someone has put glue on your eyes and set it with a heat gun. All the moisture from your eyes are gone and your lenses are firmly bonded with the top layer of your eyeball. Cue trying to remove them without ripping off the top layer of your cornea…

Swimming is terrifying

Ever seen those people who seem frightened of water touching their face? Well, chances are, they wear contact lenses. Having your contact lens washed out of your eyes is terrifying for three reasons – 1) the general chlorine mixed with contact lens drama is bad enough 2) if your lens does get washed away – you can LITERALLY SEE NOTHING 3) Scary microbes that live in water are SO BAD for your eyes, you should avoid them at all costs.

Uncontrollable winking

This is often seen in offices, coffee shops, in the street – basically anywhere. A little bit of insight (pun, ha!) – this is someone who has something on their lens. Whether its an eyelash, a blob of mascara, a hair or some random airborne item – it is now lodged on their lens and short of taking the lens out, the second best option is to blink your eye rapidly hoping to dislodge it. Also, it hurts like a MOFO so it’s literally impossible not to wink crazily, usually whilst water is pouring out of your eyes…

Unplanned night activities are stressful

Now this sounds rude, but not in that way – although that way also applies here. Many a night I’ve been out, or over at a friends and they say ‘oh, just stay at mine tonight’. This drives fear into my heart. I haven’t got my lenses case or my glasses! I panic that I’ll be blind come morning if I don’t have the appropriate place to store my lenses and so inevitably have to make excuses that I have to go home unless I’m sober and have my car in which case I can hop into my car, drive all the way home, pick up my eye-related paraphernalia and head on back to the party / outing / meal that I was at safe in the knowledge that I have my lenses stuff with me and now the world is my oyster!!

Only putting one in and trying to make it through the day makes you look like a psycho

We’ve all been there. You’ve either dropped or damaged a lens but either don’t want to wear your glasses (or if you’re me – have no idea where your glasses are). This results in winging it with just the one and what ensues is the inevitable inadvertent winking at individuals whilst trying to focus your good eye on something, a constant battle to try and focus both eyes at the same time and a splitting headache.

You can lose a lens in the back of our eyeball but it will not end up in your brain

A friend of mine’s mum was an optician and I remember my friend telling me how a customer came in because he had lost his lenses, and her mum proceeded to fish around 3 lenses out of each eye that had got lost in the void somewhere…how? I do not know.

How to make the most of ‘me’ time

I don’t know about you, but I can get very nervous if I’m on my own with time stretched out before me. Anyone else been there? A bit of scheduled time where you will have time to yourself and then that thought hits you…what am I going to do?!

I call it The Fear.
That feeling that creeps up upon you until you feel like you’re drowning in panic when you have no plans, and there is no-one else around.
When I was younger, I remember saying to people – “I don’t get bored”. When challenged on this, I reassured them – “seriously, you could leave me on a chair for 5 hours on my own and I would not get bored”.
I wonder now what it was that so assured in my younger self that I would be totally happy with no-one but myself. But more than that. Totally happy with nothing but my thoughts.
Now the idea of being alone with nothing to do and no-one to talk to terrifies me.
But how often do we read or see articles about how to make the most of your limited time? How to multitask in life to achieve everything? How often do we feel strung out and need nothing more than a bit of rest time?
But if that time comes unexpectedly, you get The Fear. So here are a couple of relaxing – or at least therapeutic – activities to make the most of the ‘me’ time without getting The Fear:

  1. Paint your nails – a relaxing, absorbing pastime that leaves you feeling and looking better. I dream of having perfectly manicured nails, and I always used to, but now I feel like I don’t have time. Well move aside vegetating on the sofa, these nails need doing! If nails aren’t your thing – just take a bath, or have some sort of pamper. You’re worth it!
    [Note: do not do what I do. Paint nails when you have to be somewhere 30 minutes later…that just ends in tears / smudged nails]
  2. Organise – we all have that one drawer (entire room of the house) that needs sorting. One of those, – four hours later, sat in a pile of papers – kinda sort-outs. But the thought of doing it can be daunting, and it’s one of those things that once you scratch the surface, you’re in it for the long-haul. However, set yourself this kind of challenge when you have time on your hands and you’ll not only be doing something productive but, more often than not, you’ll get engrossed in the task plus stumble across all those nik naks you forgot about.
  3. Photographs – when I was younger I couldn’t wait to finish the film in my camera to go to the chemists (seriously, I was only born in the mid 80s but I sound so old!) to get it developed. Now those days have gone but I think its both a good and a bad thing. You upload your pictures off your SD card and onto your computer or external hard drive – all safe and sound but do you ever look at them?
    Ever have those afternoons as a child where you stumble across faded pictures of your parents on the beach or old men who turn out to be your dad’s great uncle – those opportunities will pass us by if we don’t have hard copies of our pictures.
    How about sort your photos into folders online, by date, and then upload onto a photo printing site like photobox and get them posted to you? You can pick up some cheap photo albums and spend a few free afternoons or evenings reminiscing whilst putting together some great albums of great times.
  4. Indulge – this may differ for people, but I am the type of person who loves getting new toiletries and make-up, but confession time. I’m too scared to use them. Anything that is particularly nice or expensive I squirrel away as I want to keep it good. But why? Its such a waste. I used to do the same with new clothes – didn’t want to take the tag off them. How ridiculous. So I’d be wearing clothes I didn’t really like, cheap or old make-up and standard chemist-bought toiletries, all to ‘keep it good’! So indulge – take the cellophane wrapper off that make-up, pour yourself a bath and use that beautiful bath oil, light those expensive candles. Indulge.
  5. Read a book – now I love reading, but when do you get the chance? Often we’ll feel guilty about sitting doing nothing but reading but do it! Reading exercises our mind and can be a really relaxing pastime.
  6. Clean. Now a lot of you will be groaning at this, but have you ever gutted your house and then sat there feeling amazing? I love that feeling but I hate cleaning. I know this is about ‘me’ time, but some of the ‘me’ time is to actually put your time to good use. Taking care of your home, which is more often than not your biggest expense in your life, is worth the time and trust me – you’ll feel brilliant afterwards.
  7. Reconnect – when you’re so busy and have work, life, family and financial commitments it can be easy to let those carefully nurtured friendships slip away. Use your ‘me’ time productively and reconnect with those people. Go through your phone or social media contacts list and send messages or call those that you haven’t spoken to in a while but want to stay a part of your life. I did this recently and contacted, and eventually met up with, three different people from my life who I don’t have mutual friends with and otherwise would never see. Its great and gives you new perspectives and new topics of conversation. So try it, just contact three people and see what rewards it brings.

TheUnglamorousGirl

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Essentials for your handbag when you commute

Essentials for your handbag when you commute

I have just got myself a new job (hooray) but this will be my first job where I work in a town centre as opposed to a business park and my first job where I will be travelling on public transport instead of driving. This seems both exciting – having lots of options to choose from for lunch and very Bridget Jones-esque/ commuter-style – but also it drives fear into my heart!
In the past, should I have forgotten my purse or phone, I can hop back into my car and go retrieve it but also I have a stash of spare tops, shoes, coins, lip glosses and coats in my car for a range of emergencies (in the loosest sense of the word!)

Essentials for your handbag when you commute
Essentials for your handbag when you commute

However now, I need to make sure I’m totally prepared and have everything I might need. Here’s what I’ve got so far as essentials for your handbag when you commute…

  1. Umbrella This is something that I never have with me…but this is also why I have bad hair and mascara running down my face…
  2. Small Make-Up bag with essentials in miniature:  I never top up my make-up throughout the day, but this proves to be a terrible idea. Don’t believe me? I’ll send you my wedding pictures – the ones before I left the house after my make-up was done, and the ones when we’re cutting the cake where I’ve sweated and cried (with joy might I add) it all off and I’m just a pink shiny faced lady in a white dress. NOT a good look. P.s. INCLUDE A NAIL FILE!
  3. Plasters or other foot remedies:  You set off for work all pressed and dressed and start walking. For an inexplicable reason your shoes which you’ve worn 138 other times problem-free decide to start rubbing. This is one of my biggest hates – because you need to keep going, but with every step you take (every move you make….) you are rubbing off another slither of skin and you know your feet will be in a state by the time you arrive at work, not to mention the fact you are now marooned in work in these damned shoes that you have to wear for at least another 8 hours!
  4. Change:  I feel like the Queen sometimes – no, not because I have power or wealth or a huge weird family, but because I never carry cash. Now don’t get me wrong, should I ever get mugged I’ll feel smug that they got nothing bar a Boots Advantage Card and some crumpled pieces of paper in my bag (I would be very upset about my Dune bag and Fiorelli floral purse however). But how often do you have a bit of time and think, ‘I’ll pop in and get a drink’, ‘I’ll go and get a jacket potato from the stand’ or ‘I just need £3 for the train’ – that happens to me all the time, but I never have any bloody money on me! Keep an emergency stash of £10 in a pocket in your bag and you’ll never get stuck.
  5. Pen:  Just because
  6. Hairbrush, a few bobbles and grips:  You never know where the day might go. Someone might ask if you fancy meeting up for a drink after work, or you look outside and its peeing it down with rain or some other occasion that makes you want to change your hairstyle or pull back your locks to protect them or get them out your way.

Are there any other major things I’ve forgotten? If so, let me know in the comments!

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