Side Street Style

Side Street Style

Side Street Style

Family travel and lifestyle blog

27/04/2021

4 Easy Ways to get your Kids to Wash Their Hands

anti-bacterial slime

* AD/PR Sample - I was provided with two pots of Anti-bacterial slime to provide an honest unpaid review

Personal hygiene has always been an important skill to teach our children and the past year has thrust handwashing into the spotlight even more. Never before has it been quite so important to make sure we clean our hands especially when we are out and about. While my kids have grasped the concept of constant handwashing it doesn't mean that it hasn't become somewhat monotonous, so anything that makes it a little bit more fun is a real bonus. So here are a few fun ideas to keep kids engaged when it comes to personal hygiene.

1. Slime that cleans!

Yes, you heard me right, Canal Toys have recently released anti-bacterial slime that kills up to 99.9% of bacteria on hands! As you can imagine this slime is hugely popular with my boys, who don't actually know it's cleaning their hands while they play, it's the perfect combo if you ask me and is perfect for any slime fans out there. What is great about these slime pots is that they are pocket-sized so easy to take out and about, plus they are non-toxic, alcohol-free and the anti-bacterial properties last for around 1 month and can be reused over and over during that time and it doesn't dry out the skin either.


anti-bacterial slime


2. Sticker charts and colouring in posters

A sticker chart is an easy and budget-friendly way to support a gentle routine to the day and can also incorporate things like brushing teeth, washing their face and washing hands. If your kids like to be creative they can also make their own sticker chat or have fun colouring in their own handwashing poster - you can find some free printables here

3. Use foaming soap or hand sanitiser

Who would have guessed that foaming soap or hand sanitiser makes washing hands so much for fun - my boys just love foaming soap. We have been using Scrubbingtons which is 98% natural, alcohol-free and is moisturising, it's also perfect for at home and when we are out and about and there is just something about foam that kids love, I never have any issues with getting them to use it. 


scrubbingtons



4. Try your hand at making your own soap

My kids loved making their own bath bombs a few months ago and we plan to make some of our own soap very soon, which I know they will love and will also want to use, because who wouldn't want to use something they have made? It's an easy way to be creative at home while also encouraging hand washing.

A few other ideas is having a fun light-up timer to ensure they are washing for 20 seconds, you can also set up a "toy wash" where you get younger children to wash their toys (my youngest loved this when he was a toddler), it's also worth educating them on why it's important to wash hands by doing some fun science experiments about germs - Mum in the Madhouse has some great ideas on her blog. 


23/04/2021

Lets talk about Body Hair

body hair

*This post contains affiliate links


Body hair, we all have it, it's natural, it's normal, yet the "rules" across genders are still typically very different and while men encouraged to grow body hair the same unfairly cannot be said for a woman. However, with more people than ever taking to social media and joining in with more diverse discussions, sharing their opinions, experiences and cultures, attitudes are slowly changing when it comes to things like body hair, in fact the Metro recently wrote about why more women are putting their razors down and embracing body hair. 

Personally, I have always stood strongly behind the ethos that a woman's body is their own and it's always their choice to live in a way that is authentic and makes them happy, whether that be to grow their body hair out or to shave - all choices are valid and empowering in their own way. 

The thing we have to work on is coming to the conclusion of what feels right to us and not what society pushes and deems as acceptable. We rarely see women in magazines and on TV with body hair but that doesn't mean in any way that it's wrong when in fact body hair is very natural. Some women genuinely do not like body hair while for others, they feel empowered by allowing theirs to grow. 

As a society, we need to support both as both is beautiful and neither should be made to feel otherwise. Together we need to work against the idea that not shaving is "going against the norm" so that more woman can feel comfortable to make a decision on what feels good rather than what society expects us to do. 

Shave or don't shave it's all about self-worth and love and either way care needs to be taken to ensure a happy and healthy body. If you're ditching the razer then why not treat yourself to some nice natural body soaps or investing in organic cotton underwear which is nice and breathable and can help to reduce yeats and bacterial infections because it allows air to flow easily (plus most organic underwear brands are super comfy too) 

If you feel really good with smooth legs and underarms that's fantastic too, just be kind to yourself and look at different ways to remove unwanted hair that is kind and doesn't cause too much stress or pain on your body. Shaving is always a great pain-free budget-friendly option how every only lasts a short time, waxing is another popular choice although I've never done it personally as I don't like pain but does last longer. Other options are also prescription creams which are pain-free but you need to discuss this with a dermatologist first as some can cause skin irritation.

Two other options for longer-term removal is laser hair removal, which can be costly over time but results last much longer as well. Then there is electrolysis which is a procedure done by a doctor or medical skincare professional and is the most advanced method with the longest results. 

Whatever you decided to do is deeply personal and you never have to justify or explain your reasonings but knowing the options is also important. Why not give both a try? If you normally shave why not have a break for a while and see how you feel? 


body hair


16/04/2021

Accepting and Acceptance of all bodies

Body positivity

Collaborative Post with Affiliate links

The modern-day pressures of what society deem as pretty have caused havoc to the lives of many women as what we see portrayed in magazines, TV and social media are not always possible or realistic to most yet we are constantly pushed to achieve this, while still being told over and over again we need to accept our bodies fully. We also live in a world where it's almost acceptable to gossip or lay judgement to others (often publically), yet our bodies are our own right? We should have total autonomy to do what we like if it makes us feel good then why not - if someone wants to wear makeup that's great, if not that's also totally fine, the same goes for body size - all size's are beautiful, big or small and if someone does want to change their body that's their right and not for us to judge or mock because many of our decisions are connected to our mental health and are for us and us alone to decide on. We all have hang ups which is why body positivity and acceptance is something we all need to work on.

1. All Sizes matter

What we need to understand is that guilt on any level is toxic and guilt is often thrown about too easily when it comes to body size, on both sides. For far too long plus size has been seen as a negative when it's just as beautiful and valid as those on the smaller scale, equally a woman should not feel guilty if they love hitting the gym everyday - how we decide to live our lives and our lifestyle are individual to our needs and we need to priorities our needs whatever they may be.

2. Do not place worth on weighing scales

Weighing scales or what they tell you should not reflect your value! Health and wellbeing has little to do with weight and more to do with caring for ourselves, such as getting enough sleep, drinking more water or avoiding stress triggers. I don't own a weighing scale because frankly I don't care about it and it doesn't reflect my health in anyway. 

3. Do you when it comes to Makeup

Personally I don't wear anything more than a little moisturizer and foundation because I am low maintenance in that department and also for me I feel more comfortable we less but for others makeup is art, a confidence boost and is what feels right for them. While yes their are trends and influences from social media but for many. it's about doing what makes them feel good so if you see someone with no makeup don't imply they could be making "more of an effort" with themselves and the same goes if you see someone with a lot of make up, comments like "that's too much" is hurtful and it's not your body, everyone has a right to express themselves in their own way.


makeup


4. Have fun with your style

When you become a parent there can be a lot of pressure to look a certain way, to dress a certain way - in fact this can been seen at most stages in our lives and we can often be shamed when we don't fit those stereotypes. Gender has also played a big role but luckily these stereotypes are being challenged and dropped and when it comes to personal style just do what you want. I have a more androgoneous approach to clothing but if you like to wear heels, wear them, if you like to really dress up then do it or if you all about comfort that is ace too just don't be shamed into looking a certain way when you fundamentally is goes against how you feel on the inside.

5. Surgery is a valid and personal choice.

While cosmetic surgery isn't for me at this juncture in time it is a valid and deeply personal choice for others and no one should be shamed if they choose to change something about themselves. We are currently told to emrbace ourselves and love ourselves but if surgery is done for the right reasons and will improve a personals mental health then that is their choice and theirs alone and should be supported. When making the decision about investing in surgery it's really important to research all your options and make use of any resources available to you.

6. Actively challenge your views on body image and make sure it has diversity at it's core

Many of us don't realise how much we have been influcend by those around us, by magazines, adverts, TV etc and how we already have some kind of bias so we need to be active in our role to finding acceptance and happiness when it comes to our bodied but also other people's too. We need to drop our expectations of what society expects, of how a woman should look and also when it comes to emrbacing and accepting all sizes, races, sexual orientation, disabilities and age. Whenever we found ourselves judging other women we need to stop, think and reflect on why we are doing that and asks ourselves what is making us feel uncomfortable and whether that is fair and ask if it's making that person happy and if it is we need to embrace that. 

Here is a very inspiring article about why body positivity is about more than just accepting sizes but involves so much more.  


female future

07/04/2021

Lockdown Life Skills - what new skills many of us learnt during lockdown


bath bombs
We tried our hand at making bath bombs


* Contains Affiliate links


With much of the past year spent in lockdown, life as we know it has been flipped upside down, even when restrictions are lifted, life at the moment isn't the same. Gone are the days of rushing here and there and travelling for hours to work with many opting to work from home for the long haul, has meant for some extra time saved on the commute and more time to try new things 

These are some of the most popular hobbies people have taken up over the past year

Running

It’s no surprise that a lot of us decided to take up running as our “one form of exercise”. With many calling it a “lockdown lifesaver”, research from Macmillan Cancer Support has found that almost one in 10 Brits have started running or jogging to look after their mental health during the pandemic. Running app Couch to 5K has become hugely popular and the London Marathon in October is set to be the biggest ever.



black and white photography



Photography

Lockdown has certainly taught us to appreciate our surroundings and what is on our doorstep, with many people heading outdoors for their daily exercise and taking their camera along with them. There’s been no end of budget-friendly online courses that many of us have signed up to in the hope of learning a bit more about photography.

Cutting Hair

With hairdressers being closed for months on end and though many women decided to love their roots and embrace their split ends & men growing out their hair and beards, many have still felt the need to tidy their locks. During the first lockdown, web searches for 'How to cut men's hair' increased by an incredible 632%. With many buying their own set of hairdressing scissors to make sure they do the job properly, we could have a generation of talented barbers on our hands.

Learning How to Cook

Many have been spending more time in the kitchen than ever before, so many have taken advantage and tried to increase their cookery knowledge. It takes little investment but promises to deliver a lot of satisfaction. Some of us have mastered the art of baking bread, while others have been learning to make pasta or pursuing the recipe for the perfect cookie. The majority of us, of course, can now bake banana bread with our eyes closed.


family bike ride

 

Riding a Bike

OK – I'm talking mainly about children here. Huge numbers of youngsters learnt how to ride a bike in lockdown, as it’s a great way to get outside and there were far fewer dangers on the roads. The good weather helped and now with children back at school, many are ditching the car or the bus and choosing to cycle to class instead.


With so many new skills being mastered, it’s no surprise that towards the end of 2020, more than half of us were planning to make a change to our careers as a direct result of the pandemic. Life may have been very difficult for the past year, but a lot of us are leaving lockdown with new talents that could change our lives – or even just bring us a little extra joy.
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