Dubai - United Arab Emirates
|(mental note: probably a good idea to get rid of the cat hair on your sports bra before taking a picture of it)|
So, I recently started riding my bike out at the tracks around town. Which is really weird for a girl for whom "physical activity" usually means "pausing Netflix and going to the door to get my pizza delivery". But alas, the cycling bug has bit me and I now try to get out on my bike at least four times a week.
Now that I'm almost a fully-fledged cyclist (don't worry, I promise that I will NEVER, EVER wear the full lycra getup), I thought I'd share one of the things that I find motivate me the most. No, not the promise of taught, cyclist's thighs. Not even the fact that I may be extending my life expectancy. Nope, for this girl, the motivation is all in the music. And what better motivation than a soundtrack full of badass women? Here are the tracks that I play when I want to get on my bike and really push myself to ride as hard as I can (no pun intended). Bonus points if the tracks make me feel so great that I do squats in front of the mirror when I get home.
The Coathangers - Watch Your Back
The Coathangers are one of my more recent discoveries and have quickly become one of my favorite bands of the year. This one is super fun and I often find myself bopping around on my bike when this one it plays.
Badassiest lyrics: What you do, what you say, it will all come back one day. What you do, what you say, it will all come back to you.
The Ettes - Walk Out That DoorShort and sweet. This one is perfect for when I need to a) release a little rage, and b) convince myself to kick up the speed during my intervals.
Badassiest lyrics: I don't need you to survive, cuz you're among the ones I left behind. Walk out that door.
Bikini Kill - I Hate DangerI like to listen to this one when I am either warming up or starting to cool down. This is one of my favorite Bikini Kill songs, so there's also an element of nostalgia, but it works!
Badassiest lyrics: The only thing I managed to say during that time was 'I hate danger', but what I really should've said was 'you're so not dangerous, you're so not what you say you are at all'.
The Julie Ruin - I'm DoneAnother Kathleen Hanna one, can you tell I'm a fan? I'm Done is about Kathleen being done with internet trolls, but I like to think it applies to every day jerks/self pity/fear of going faster on your bike and possibly falling on your face, as well.
Badassiest lyrics: I'm sick of your disappointment, tasting like a bottle full of poison. I'm done.
Ex Hex - New KidI do love me some Mary Timony. And this song. I was going through a rough patch a few months ago, and this song came on when I was cycling. I turned the music up and actually felt like I was flying. So freaking good.
Badassiest lyrics:You're the new kid in town, everybody trying to knock you down. They thought it hurt when they did it to me, I just laughed and I turned the other cheek. Just trying to get your kicks, and no one understands that you're a warrior, warrior, warrior. You're a warrior.
For someone who still mainly listens to riot grrrl, discovering Tacocat was a big deal. A discussion of feminist issues set to fun, bouncy music? Hell yeah. They also have the coolest videos.
Tacocat - Hey girl
Badassiest lyrics: Who do you think you are? Yelling at me from your car? Well come on back here then, I'm ready to jump in.
The Runaways - Cherry BombThis is one of the songs that first sent me down the rabbit hole of kickass female musicians when I was a kid. I still turn this up whenever I need to feel like I can take over the world.
Badassiest lyrics: Hello world, I'm your wild girl. I'm your cherry bomb.
Apart from being one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite bands, this song just sounds soooo good when you're speeding around on a bike. There's something about the shared rage in this song that just makes me want to scream out loud and pedal until my legs fall off. It is also super fun to yell this out as you pass joggers on the other side of the track.
Sleater-Kinney - Little Mouth
Badassiest lyrics: I'm your little mouth, don't you want me? Damn you.
Bleached - Looking For a FightI love playing this at the end of my bike ride, or on the way home. Mainly because the endorphins make me feel like I could actually take on anyone in my way. But also because it's a crazy fun song and has just enough energy to keep me hyped up for a while after my ride.
Badassiest lyrics: I'd walk you home tonight, but you'd better steer clear cuz I'm looking for a fight.
OK, here's the thing. I live in Dubai. And in Dubai, our summers get pretty brutal. Like 'sandstorms all over the place, 45/113 degree heat and 80% humidity' brutal. Summer in Dubai does have it's pros; most people leave the city, which means rush hour is less of a drag and the stores are less likely to sell out of items on your list.
This summer, I'm one of the people leaving the city. I'll be hitting up Europe for a few weeks, and I can't wait. Being the major planner that I am, I started prepping for my trip a while ago, and I thought I'd share some of my favorite summer beauty prep products!
the Body Shop also makes some really good ones with a longer handle for easier use.
The best time to use your body brush is right before you hop into the shower. Lightly brush your skin in long strokes towards your heart to increase circulation and help drain toxins. Lots of people (myself included) swear by body brushing's ability to minimize cellulite. Whether or not this works for everyone, pretty much everyone will love the super smooth, just-back-from the spa soft skin that you get with body brushing.
Halima raved about the pads and I had to give them a go. I don't use them every day because I'm on prescription retinoids, but once I was able to add them back into my routine (usually twice a week), OH BOY. Sometimes, I actually wake up in the morning and stare at my skin for a while. It's smooth, even and so soft that I have to remind myself not to stroke my face in public. Order them here.
It would appear that my theme for Christmas 2015 is Treat Yo Self. 2015 has been a weird year, and I felt like I kinda deserved a few treats. One of which, I'm really excited about because it's my first Net-A-Porter experience, and my first real foray into the wonderful world of sneakers.
I came across these Adidas Originals Superstars and pretty much fell in love. Obviously, as a living, breathing human being, I've seen loads of celebrities wearing white sneakers and I've come across dozens of pins on Pinterest. I like these ones because the floral trim gives them a bit of a feminine touch, but the colors are neutral enough that they won't really clash with much. They're made of leather, which I'm hoping means they'll be easy to clean, because I'm pretty terrible at adulting and am constantly making a mess.
I found these ones on the American Net-a-porter site $80 (AED 293), which was cheaper than on the UK site, where they were £65 (AED 355), and on ASOS, where they were £67 (AED 366). I used standard shipping and were delivered to me (via Shop and Ship) in about six days.
Here's a link to the shoes, let me know if you get a pair!