From day 1 to day 28 - we are here to share and discuss “cycle routines.” From period products, beauty tips, health remedies and exercise regimes - all the things that help you make the most of all the feels.
In this series we will spotlight different members of the Scarlet community to learn how they manage their period and whole cycle.
Our first Cycle Routine is with Ali Whittle. A Sydney-based content creator with a highly coveted beauty shelf. Ali shares with us the first time she got her period, how the pandemic has taught her to take better care of herself and the beauty products she swears by throughout her cycle.
Name: Ali Whittle
Occupation: Content Creator
Location: Bondi Beach, Sydney
Of course. I was 14 and it happened at the end of the school day. My mum picked me up and I said, ”I think we need to go to a pharmacy,” with a look on my face that said it all. The timing was a bit overwhelming as the next day I had year 9 camp, where we were away for 3 nights. From memory there was limited access to an actual toilet and not the best shower amenities! A lot to deal with but I had my friends with me so managed to get through it all ok!
About a week out, my boobs get a bit bigger and quite tender. My appetite tends to change, meaning I may need to snack more. I use a period tracking app so I’m pretty aware when things are going to happen. I’m really regular and get my period pretty much bang on every 28 days. When I first get my period, I usually get cramps and some pain, nothing crazy but it does bother me. Sometimes I take a painkiller to get me through the first day but sometimes the cramping isn’t so bad and I can skip the painkiller. A hot shower also fixes everything too. Up until this year I was using organic cotton tampons – something I switched to years ago after learning about all the crazy things that can go into lots of other brands. But this year I started using a cup and also period underwear. Before the pandemic, we’d just have to take the pain or whatever our period throws at us in our stride – but I’ve loved the comfort of being at home. It’s meant being able to really take better care of myself!
I’ve kind of tried it all – and sometimes you can’t change your plans and maybe you get your period while you’re exercising or just before a scheduled class and you just power through it, or sneak out early. I just do whatever feels right. Sometimes pain can interfere and if that’s the case, I stop. If I need to be horizontal, I do that. But almost always, that post exercise feeling/endorphin rush is what’s needed, even if it’s just a walk and a stretch.
With that hormonal change in the lead up to getting my period, a breakout or two is normal. I usually don’t stress too much about it and definitely have some products up my sleeve to help tackle or prevent. Maybe it’s hydration I need – so I’ll use the Syrene Aqua Hydrating Mask, maybe I need exfoliation – so I’ll either use the Mecca Cosmetica Glow Giver or Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Daily Peel, maybe I need an all-in-one mask moment – like the Rationale The Mask, or maybe it’s a more targeted treatment to stop a blemish in its tracks – I’ll use the Dr Dennis Gross Breakout Clearing Gel. I’m incredibly lucky because of what I do – and I have a skincare product for any kind of skin mood. I also take the Glow Powder from The Beauty Chef, Vitamin C Immune + from Melrose Health and I’ve just started taking Pearl Powder.
Gosh, where to begin!! If you saw the amount of product I have at home…..but some absolute must haves include Bioderma Micellar water, anything from Biossance - their Gel Moisturiser is one I always have a back up of. Amore Pacific Single Vintage Extract Essence, Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair, Clarins Relax Treatment Oil, Ultra Violette Supreme Screen SPF 50, Summer Fridays CC Me Serum, Lanolips 101 ointment. Makeup wise, anything Kosas or Westman Atelier. The list definitely goes on and on and on. I am constantly sharing my newest finds and loves on my Instagram so best to check that out for more.
Understanding your cycle and your body comes with time. Tuning into it, listening to your body and taking adequate action can really help. Be kind to your body, give it what it needs – whether that be rest, exercise, vegetables, a burger, a wine or lots of water.
My period described in 3-words… Punctual, manageable, predictable
My contraception method of choice… I track my cycle and ovulation through an app
I know my period is coming when…. My boobs start to get sore, my period tracker tells me
Do you use a tracker? If so, what do you use? It’s an app called Clue
‘My period self-care toolkit’ looks like this… the comfiest clothes I can find, Netflix, lighting a Diptyque candle, some kind of delicious takeaway – just ultimate comfort and cosiness
When you’re feeling down my advice is to… Have a shower, do your skincare, put on your comfiest clothes, eat something delicious, drink lots of water, watch something you love and get lots of rest
My wise-ass advice on dating… oh god, dating can be so hard. Try not to take it too seriously, have fun and as cliché as it is - when it’s right, you’ll know.
Words to live by…It’s all going to be ok
The book(s) I recommend you read immediately… Anything by Sally Rooney
Dealing with your period for the first time… Don’t be afraid to ask questions – talk to your friends and your mum or your sisters. Or anyone who you feel comfortable with!
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