Friday, 20 February 2015

Four New Piercings!

Since August last year I have been seriously contemplating and researching new ear piercings, specifically second lobe piercings, and helix/cartilage piercings. I did so much visual and technical research on piercings, looking at the way they look, how painful they are, what can happen when you get them, etc- watching YouTube videos, asking friends and family, and looking on information sites. 
When I moved to uni, I was shown and told about a Tattoo and Piercing parlour called 'Asgard' which have bases both in Winchester and Southampton, and did some further research into their customs, hygiene, and prices for piercings, until finally, on the 6th February 2015, I went and got four new piercings! 
I was so nervous on the day, and I'm pretty sure that if my friend Becca hadn't come with me, I would have turned around and ran back home. So the first thing I would say if you're are going to get a piercing is to take a friend with you, because doing it alone would have been ten-times worse for me. However, at the same time, make sure it is definitely your own decision to get this piercing, and that you've not been pressured into getting one, or feel like you have to because all your friends have one. Piercings are a commitment, so you have to make sure you definitely want it.
When I arrived at the studio, I said to the piercer what I wanted done- two helix piercings and my second lobe piercings on each ear- and then was given a form which I had to fill in and sign. The form had the standard name, age, address kind of questions, and then also ones based on health, for example if you faint easily, have drunk alcohol in the past 12 hours, etc.
Once that first section was signed, I was shown into the piercing room, where I sat on a long chair/lounger, and the piercing process began. She cleaned both ears thoroughly, and got set up with my chosen earrings at the ready. She then marked on dots according to where I wanted them, allowing me to check in the mirror to make sure I liked the planned placing for each piercing.
She gave me the choice as to which ones I had done first, and although I didn't overly mind, I opted for the helix piercing to be done first. Within about 5-10 minutes, I had all four piercings done. I then had to sign the form again to show I was happy with the result- which I was, and then she explained to me the cleaning process and what solutions were recommended for this.
The whole experience was nowhere near as bad as I thought it would be. I had heard stories about the helix piercings being immensely painful, when in actual fact I found them no worse than the lobe ones I had done. For all four of the piercings I had, the needle went through almost painlessly, and then when she put the earrings in, there was a sharp pinch each time the earring was pushed in. Then because the earrings I had were barbells, which are stud earrings with a screw on ball at the back, there was a bit of discomfort when she was screwing the backs on, but for me the pain was no worse than the sharp pinch when the earring is pushed in. I am used to needles from having had blood tests every year of my life, and I believe I have a relatively high pain threshold, so for me the piercings were not bad at all. On a scale of 1-10, 10 being the highest, I would put the ear lobe piercings at a 2/3 overall, and the helix piercings at a 3 overall.
After they were done, the helix ones throbbed and had a dull sting, but it was not painful as such. During this first week of having them, they have been tender to touch, have bled a little, have swollen and the cartilage around the helix piercings has been bruised, plus I still cannot sleep on my left side, however, they are not unbearably painful, and I definitely do not regret getting them all done. So long as I care for them carefully and correctly, they should heal without a problem.
Left Ear: Double Helix and Second Lobe.

Right Ear: Second Lobe.
Back of Left Ear

Half an hour after getting them done. 
One Week Later.

One Week Later

One Week Later: Ears have returned to
normal size as swelling has subsided.


-- Ash Cam.


Thursday, 19 February 2015

Hair History: Past to Present.

Sooo... it's been a while since I wrote a blog post, which as I always say, I am annoyed at myself about. However, I have a lot of cool ideas planned for my blog which I am hoping will keep me busy with updating on here regularly. My new, busy self begins now.

This post is a bit random, but if any of you reading this know me, or follow me on instagram or twitter you may have seen my hair changing quite a bit this past year. I've wanted to document this change before, but, as usual, never got around to it. However, when I was contemplating doing it this month, I was thinking back to previous hair styles I've had, and realised that over the past 3 years my hair has changed quite a bit, so I thought why not do a full past-present documentation of all the styles I've tried.

Block Fringe Years:

My hair was pretty much the same style from the age of 4 years old, to when I was 16 years old-- blunt fringe and straight hair, that I sometimes got my Mum to trim or layer. When I was 4, my hair was a cute blonde bob, which soon grew out and darkened, meaning that by the age of 6, my hair was down to my belly button and a dark blonde colour. This eventually turned to mousey blonde, but the blunt fringe stayed throughout my childhood and most of my teenage years. It was a safe style, that I liked and was comfortable with. I have a round/heart-shaped-ish face, and having read many 'what hair suits your face shape' articles online and in magazines, I knew that the blunt fringe was a flattering style for me.

However, during secondary school I saw everyone chopping and changing their hairstyles, and by 16 years old, I'd had enough of the hair style I'd kept for over a decade-- I decided to expand my hair styling horizons....

 The Side Parting and Sweeping Side Fringe:

In the Summer of 2012, aged 16, I finally changed my hair. This change-up consisted of a good old chop, so that it was 'boob-length' (sorry, but that is the only way to describe it), and a change in style, adding layers to the bulk of my hair, shifting the parting from middle to side  (my left side), and cutting my fringe into a sweeping side fringe. I remember being IMMENSELY happy with my new hairdo. It was just in time for the start of Sixth Form, so I was super excited to show it off to my friends!

October 2012

Growing Out All Fringes:

I had my side sweeping fringe until about June 2013, and in those 10 months I had trimmed it and sometimes reverted back to my full fringe, but mostly stuck to it, all the while, just letting the rest of my hair grow out. However, there came a point when, it just became irritating, and because of its long sweep across my face, there was always bits falling out of place and irritating my eyes- it was never quite perfect. So during the Summer I made the decision to begin growing it out, this way I would have six weeks to determine whether I liked myself fringeless or not without getting self conscious about it in front of my class mates.
By July 2013, I was able to tuck my side fringe fully behind my ear, or pin it back. By August it was neatly framing my face. And by September, ready for my second and last year of Sixth Form, it was grown out and just a short, face-framing piece of hair that fell to just below my jaw.  
June 2014
Don't ask me why I'm holding paintbrushes

I FRICKING LOVED IT! I finally felt free of all ties of a fringe! With a fringe I had to brush it out when wet and dry it really carefully, yet even then I would always have kinks and have to re-wet it in the morning and re-dry it again when I didn't have time to do that before school. But with my new fringeless style, I could leave it to dry naturally, or with a hair dryer all I did was flip my head upside down and blast it, no hassle whatsoever. And it kept growing and growing. And looking back at the photos I have of 2013-14 and it looks as if I pretty much left my hair to it. I remember occasionally getting my Mum to trim it to keep it growing healthily, but otherwise, my hair was left alone until July 2014.


Mainly due to searching on social media sites, I fell in love with the idea of having coloured hair, specifically blue hair. And whilst I was a little too scared to dye the full thing blue, plus my parents at the time would not have liked that, I quite like the idea of dip dye, and so came up with a plan that I would dip-dye my hair blue for Summer 2014.  When July 2014 came I had my hair freshly cut and layered, my left-over fringe cut to frame my face better, highlights put into the front of my hair, and then the ends of my hair bleached ready for dying blue.
I actually kept the ends of my hair blonde for about a week before I put blue onto them, because I was toying with the idea of keeping it like that- however, the urge to experiment was too much, and so the endless colouring began!
I had blue ends until November 2014, when I decided to explore the colour purple. However, after trying one hair dye, it washed out within two days and was straight back to blue. I bought a different dye called 'aubergine', and this worked much better and lasted a lot longer. The aubergine colour started off as a red/pink/purple colour, then goes to deep purple with a hint of pink, and then as it began to fade out throughout November and December, I had a really cool mix of blue, purple and pink on the ends of my hair.
After bleaching my hair.

Dying it blue the first time

September 2014 after adding more blue on.

Bleach London 'Violet' dye.

'Violet' lasted 2 days!

Crazy Colour 'Aubergine' dye
feat. Samson looking for some F.A.T [fuss and attention]!

Early December.

Mid December- faded to light blue.

Purple again for Christmas 2014!

Dying Hair Ends:

I loved exploring with hair dyes, and I'm so, so, SO glad I went ahead and did it. However, after so much continuous colouring for half a year, the ends of my hair became so brittle, and had a horrid texture that felt rough and knotted. Also, I'd never really suffered with split ends until I began dying it, and I was able to snap bits of my hair off at the end, so over Christmas, and with a little hairspiration from my idol Taylor Swift, I decided that I would chop it all off for the New Year!


My Mum very kindly agreed to do this for me, and watched many YouTube videos on how to cut hair, and then shortly after Christmas, the day came when I chopped all the colour off.
I cut off about 8 inches of hair, until the length was just covering my collarbone. I was SO scared to do this, because I hadn't had short hair since I was 4 years old. I was more scared than when I coloured it the first time, but I thought to myself, if not now, then when- so I went for it, and I'm so happy with the result. My short hair is still relatively new to me, and I am loving styling it, and having something new to work with, plus it seems to be very on trend with the 2015 popular hairstyles. My fringe is shorter too, and is a more relaxed side fringe.

Freshly Cut.

Dried after being cut.

Styling it for a night out with friends.

The Future:

I do still want to have long luscious, wavy hair with lots of layers, and so my aim this year is to continue to grow my hair, but healthily- so no dying it for a while! However, I wouldn't  rule out playing around with dyes again in the future. I wouldn't mind exploring more colours, or having dark blonde to light blonde ombre. For now however, I am happy leaving it to grow and seeing how each new length looks on me.

 -- Ash Cam

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