Girl About Town

Beauty, Restaurant and Bar Reviews around Dublin City

Category: Life (page 1 of 2)

Experiments in Trying to Be a Nice(r) Person

I’d be very quick allow someone to get under my skin and become annoyed by the very way they breath. We’ve all been there, right? Or on occasion, glass of Sauvignon in hand, the girls and I would have a good old grievance-airing session. Let she without sin cast their judgement on our weakness – we’re all human.

The most important thing, I feel, is to recognise when I’m unduly having a go and make an effort, where I can, to rise above it. No harm in opening your horizons and challenging your less-than-nice thoughts; you never know you might learn something.

So recently, I’ve been trying to be a nicer person … Continue reading

Why I’m Not Quitting Blogging

You’d be forgiven for thinking that, seeing it’s been one week short of a year since my last post, that I’ve left the Blogosphere. I thought I had too*. Many have and are doing so increasingly. In many ways, it’s been the end of an era recently.

Particularly in the past few years, months, weeks and even days; the Irish blog scene has become fragmented, fraught and downright frosty.

Our world, which at its inception was  self-regulated, independent, diverse and groundbreaking – has now succumbed to the escalating pressures of readers, commentators and brands alike – and the underlying theme of the dispirited farewell posts was that “blogger has become a dirty word”.

However, let us remind ourselves what happens under great pressure. This, my friends, is how diamonds are formed. If the world “blogger” has become smutty, maybe, instead of discarding it, we give it a polish.

This is why, I’m not quitting blogging.

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The Complex Art of Female Friendship In Your Twenties

“The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.” ― Elisabeth Foley

I wish I knew where that came from, but it feeds into a train of thought I’ve been having for quite some time recently.

Lately a close friend revealed to me her quest to “be more grown up”, which meant not begrudging people for their choices. It was terribly mature, and made my feel incredibly guilty for my grudge-holding ways. Whether or not it effects you, it’s all to easy to have an opinion on someone’s decision to leave their job, kiss somebody or dye their hair – especially when you’re so far removed from the situation all there is for you to do is make a judgement.

There have been a  myriad of events that have brought me to reflect on but between this conversation with one of my closest friends, and reading Sali Hughes’s “The Importance of Maintaining A Girl Gang” on The Pool recently, saw this come to a head in, well, my head.

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What Running Taught Me About Life

I cried every year at Sports Day in Primary school. Annually, the anxiety drove me to relentlessly begging my Mum  to take me home.

Last year, however, realising my extent of my sedentary lifestyle, I signed up for Running Made Easy with Run With Tina and last weekend I crossed the finish line of my first 5k.

Crossing under the clock, quite appropriately sound-tracked by Jess Glynne’s Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself, was the culmination of a long learning curve – not just of panting, pacing and posture, but of learning a lot about myself.

I’m fully aware that this has the potential to sound unbelievably pompus – and I wouldn’t blame you for thinking that. I’d be the same had I, and also friends who subsequently did the same, witnessed it first hand. So here we go – 9 things I learned about life, when I was learning about running.

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FitSpo No-Go

This is not going to make me very popular, but my stance is this – I don’t care if you’re promoting “health” or “fitness” or “strength”:

You Should Never Be Made Feel You’re Not Good Enough By Anyone Else’s Standards

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The Difference Between Writing and Blogging

GirlAboutTown is 1 year old this month. When it started I knew it would take a new direction from my previous blog, but it’s only in the last few weeks did I realise what the difference was to be.

I’ve realised that, for me, there’s a real difference between blogging and writing; in that they are two different styles, two different voices.

I didn’t necessarily set out to write reviews, I just wanted to write.  Yes, I love makeup, and skincare, and coffee, and when a restaurant serves up a great dish; but I didn’t start writing about that sort of stuff to review it – I wrote about it to share it.

I’ve always found joy in sharing news and information with others. I’ve always been that person who can’t wait to share what they heard about a new bar or is simply so excited about their new foundation they have to tell someone. For this reason I never liked the idea of disclaimers, because if I used something and I liked something I wanted to tell someone, my opinion was never for turning.

Over time, my sister and mother were getting tired of me telling them about “this great new cream that does x, y and z” – and so I started a blog.

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Why I Shouldn’t Have Been Afraid of my Mid-Twenties

Since I was 17, I have hated birthday. The build-up, the anticipation, the need for everything to go right, all the eyes and the attention are on you. Why? –  “Because it’s your birthday”. Let me tell you something. On any given day, it’s going to be someone’s birthday, somewhere. There’s no one day that’s more special than another. Except, one day a year you get to have the finite nature of humanity and mortality shoved in your face while those around you recount how many years you’ve been on this planet and liken it to milestones in history or lengthy prison sentences. Thanks guys.

I hate birthdays. Mainly because for many years I’ve hated the idea of aging. For about 3 weeks before and after a birthday, the very notion would send me into a whirlwind of anxiety and dread. Frankly, I didn’t want to have to think about it. I still don’t. And I’d appreciate if other people wouldn’t make such a big freaking deal about it.

However, now that the “big birthdays” (16, 18 and 21) are out of the way – for now, hello 30ths fast approaching, it’s become easier to let my birthday slip by with just a few texts from those with calendar reminders and a card or two from family members – now that my age is less of a deal, I can finally take the time to appreciate what it’s brought with it.

Yes, there were the girls in school who, at 17 and 18, seemed to have their sense of “self” all figured out. I didn’t. I spent years hovering, chopping, changing. Unsure. Experimenting. The phrase “late bloomer” springs to mind. It’s only when I stopped trying to cling on to “youth” so fervently did I realise the benefits those extra years had bore.

Now, at a nondescript 26, I can finally “do” my hair. Just about at least. I can now put on my makeup and actually be happy with it, feel like I know what I’m doing. I can get ready for a night out with more ease and less tears than in previous years. I can take a deep breath and get on with things rather than shut down and hide.

It’s empowering to feel like you can put yourself together, and feel like yourself at the end. Seems simple, but that’s a big ask to many of us, myself included. No-one can tell you how to be yourself, similarly no-one can tell you how long it should take to feel that way whether it comes naturally, or, like me, you spend the extra couple years … observing, we’ll say.

Could I have done that ten years ago, as a quivering, self-conscious 16 year old? Not likely. But, while I was worried about getting older, the rest of me was growing up – and it wasn’t so terrible after all.

B(DSM) My Valentine

It may be chilly out there, but things are heating up. The most romantic weekend of the year is fast approaching and the raunchiest chick-flick in history is about to land. Our once-conservative love lives have been awakened and more and more people are venturing, giggling and curious into the realm of adult toys.

But where do you go? Do you dare venture to Ann Summers and their glittery hen do party favours? What about the dark doorway adorned with feather boas down a city side street?

Knowing that recent events were bringing such questions to mind, I decided to direct them at the person I knew would have the answers. Shawna, honorary local girl, has been building her design-led, body safe online adult store ( over the last few years and is the second participant in the GirlAboutTown interview series.

(Gold star if you get through this post without giggling)

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