Sunday, 30 April 2017


When I started my blog in 2010 I didn't know anybody who could advise me on the most suitable platform, the best way to launch, or 'drive' my posts, so, I had to learn on my own - I've made more than a ton of mistakes but, many valuable lessons later I'm now running a Top Rated blog! With that in mind, I'd like to share with you the following tips:

I've found that a lot of photo bloggers seem to use Tumblr [officially launched in 2007] while Wordpress [released in 2003] has better features for support including help with audience growth/engagement. Blogger [created in 1999, which is what I use] is uncomplicated and very easy to use. Grab a cuppa and prepare to spend a substantial amount of time having a look around before you make a firm choice about which one to use. NB: The difference between and
Essential tools, LOL!
Not all free blogging platforms allow creative freedom so, before you sign up, navigate your way around the site to find out just how much control it will give you over the design of your blog etc.

There are an absurd amount of 'blogging community' pages across all social media platforms and some of them have the most insane 'sign up' rules such as, NO SHARING OF YOUR BLOG POST LINKS. Yep, ridiculous!! What's the point of joining if you cannot do the obvious and most necessary thing to have your work be seen/read? Again, ensure you are fully aware of the requirements of these so-called 'communities' before you decide to register, join etc.
Research and planning
You've got to develop a super thick skin and be very bold when it comes to promoting your posts! Share on every applicable platform on which you have a profile/account but, try to do so in a way that's interesting, to the point, friendly and without any pressure. Yes, you want people to "check out" your work, however, you want them to feel that they have a choice because, well, they do! Research your target audience and plan your marketing strategies.

It's a saturated industry and, to some degree, has become very dog-eat-dog! Some [again, some] bloggers will never support you, they will never help you, they will never give you/your blog a shout out and they will never even 'notice' you unless you are considered successful as deemed by one of the most 'influential'/'elite' bloggers who usually receive their titles from the equally regarded platforms who dish out the awards for 'best bloggers'.
Wearing: 'Charley Jai' hoodie by the former Nothing Clothing Company / IMNA
You may struggle if you do not cover Photography, Beauty, Hair, Fashion, Make-Up, Food, or Travel! For whatever reason, the majority of the world cannot get enough of bloggers and vloggers whose content falls into those categories despite just how many websites and YouTube channels now share guides, tutorials, new releases, hauls and more within these fields. I mean, really? Is there not more to life? 

Although they may also offer no support, share your work with family and friends. Ask them to also forward your posts on to their contacts! 
Photo taken by Abi Lawal, capture by Tyrone Hylton [great friends]
Do not start a blog if you have already begun second guessing whether it's something you "actually want to do", or not. Chances are, it's not something you will commit to long term. In the same tone, starting a blog to make money is also a silly thing to do. Most bloggers will tell you that it can take a good 3-4 years of having to establish yourself and your blog long before you're given any sort of recognition that may potentially lead to monetary opportunities. That said, I do not believe in being money driven. The drive should be your passion, interests and hobbies etc.

I couldn't possibly cover everything, this entry would be far too long however, 
I hope this is helpful to you. If you have any questions just ask!

Thank you for reading

Scroll to the end of this page for the link to my radio show 

Sunday, 23 April 2017


The title of this post could be one that's been on your mind recently and while I'm likely to understand why, I'm no quitter and I don't want you to be.

I've always enjoyed writing. It was poetry as a child, the odd newspaper article as a teen, blogging and publications as an adult. The passion is still there but, as the years have rolled by the engagement has become practically zilch.

The most fun aspect of blogging, for me, is actually the most challenging - deciding what to write about, writing it down, then ensuring it makes sense, spending time on any relevant research, taking/sourcing images and editing them where necessary, placing the content onto the blog and reviewing the article many times, as well as using online assistance to check the grammar/spelling and then, of course, sharing each post across my social media platforms so it reaches you!
Although readership is still amazing (7k per month on average), I'm not entirely sure if you're with me in the way you once were because, although I know you enjoy my blog and find the content useful (you wouldn't return otherwise, nor invest in the products I mention/review), there continues to be a lack of communication and interaction - so, what should I do? Stop blogging and start vlogging? Erm, the struggle would be so beyond real for someone like me who, despite being able to talk to anyone for any length of time, is not one for talking to a camera outside of presenting plus, would people actually be more inclined to interact via video? I'm super passionate about writing and that drives me so, I'm defo going to continue blogging! It's all too easy to feel discouraged, unsupported, let down, put off by closed doors and quit, but, there will always be those who do take the time to encourage, support, uplift and welcome me into open doors which also motivates me. I'm incredibly grateful for such people!! That said, first and foremost, my enthusiasm for blogging is what has me going almost 8 years strong 😊

I refuse to give up and I hope the 4 tips below will inspire you to do the same and fuel your commitment to pursue your dreams and achieve your goals, with or without the level of backing you'd like.

Expand your knowledge through research and development opportunities and start building new connections by upping your social activities. Attend events that are out of your comfort zone and will have you socialising with people you'd never usually meet!

You have nothing to lose and potentially so much to gain. You will always be responsible for yourself, so grab hold of that responsibility and run with it! Your only fear should be that of not achieving which should automatically motivate you. Give the pursuit of your goals all you've got with whatever you have - be proud of and inspired by that! #YouGotThis πŸ˜‰

Online, in person, via email, on the phone, by post! Start by introducing yourself, then say a little about what you do and why you've chosen to reach out to them in particular. Keep the message short, authentic and light (sometimes coming across too keen, or too intense can backfire so, just relax and enjoy communicating with someone new).

Somebody somewhere would probably trade places with you in less than a heartbeat. You need to pay attention to your blessings, you need to see how much you actually have, you need to understand just how fab your life really is because, guess what? You and I both know it could be a lot worse. It can only get better and you know this!! 

Thank you for reading. 
Whatever your circumstances might be, I pray this blog post will motivate you to go out into the world and make your mark!


Scroll to the end of this page for the link to my radio show 

Sunday, 16 April 2017


The bottom line is, you need the most amount of willpower, to be super resilient, immensely dedicated, ridiculously consistent, insanely patient and you must be hugely passionate about what you're doing. 

There are those who assume that blogging [for example] is easy, lots of fun, glamorous and "not a 'real' job". In reality, it's flipping hard [loads of planning, research, preparation, drafts, edits, photography and the rest], it can be incredibly frustrating [mostly the lack of support], there's very little to no glam however, it is definitely something many have made a fab career of.
Based entirely on my own experiences [blogging, teaching, radio, events planning], these are the ingredients I believe will / can make for an awesome freelance career [albeit, one size does not fit all]:
  • Identify what fuels your passion - what do you want to give, or share / gain and why?
  • Understand exactly what it will take to commit - not just time, personal sacrifices too!
  • Assess your skills and capabilities - do you need to study, learn the trade?
  • Ensure you are aware of and have the resources you need - from Internet access to funds - you've got to be willing and able to invest in yourself for what might be a really long time!!
  • Be realistic about what is required versus what you can actually do - e.g. monthly blogging is pointless, real talk!
  • Make sure you have a strong enough database - no contacts, no audience
  • Start with what you have and, if currently working, stay in your job! - you'll need the money and your colleagues may potentially be your market / buyers / clients etc.
  • Prepare for and accept that you will have to prove yourself - unpaid work for the experience, building your database and references is once again the way to go
  • Clean up your online presence - you want to be taken seriously and have your services hired
  • WORK on your brand - you, your products, your services, your website / Facebook page / Instagram etc.
  • Have a plan of action - what, when, how and why are you going to do whatever it is you are wanting to do? How much will you charge, how will you secure clients and maintain the relationships thereafter?
  • Where possible, attend relevant talks, seminars, or workshops about going freelance and also anything beneficial relating to your chosen field. [Beware those who may try to sell you follow-up 'courses' - do not allow yourself to be pressured into buying anything. Do your research first!].
  • Pay attention to others in your field - what are they doing and how? Where are they finding their clients, what events are they attending, who are they reaching out to?
  • Look for a mentor - could prove to be a big plus and you'll also have an immediate support system
The struggle can be so disgustingly real at times and you may want to quit before you've officially started, or soon after you go freelance so, always draw strength and inspiration from your passion, remember why you made the decision to go freelance and make sure you regularly weigh up the pro's and con's. You don't want to walk away from what you love so easily! Be patient.
FYI: I don't believe it's possible to freelance and have a full-time job long term - I mean, headache and stress much...? - However, it's defo possible to do so alongside a part-time contract. That said, be mindful of the fact that it isn't easy and freelancing is not likely to be lucrative for a while. Also, you'll want to create a positive, encouraging working environment for yourself and a strict schedule!

Visit Eventbrite [UK / USA etc.] and book anything that you believe will be valuable and is cost effective. Also search Google for more tips and additional freelancer support. 

The world of happiness comes from being able to successfully do your own thing and earn from it too but, it can be so dread at times! Isn't something to step into on a whim, that's for sure!!

Thank you for reading. 
I hope this post was helpful in some way. 


Scroll to the end of this page to listen to my radio show.... 

Sunday, 9 April 2017


'Minimal' is my favourite word. I rarely wear anything beyond cream and lip balm on my face and when I do apply anything, it is so basic; so little that it's more of a tint than it is a full on face paint! However, I've learned that [for me personally] the best way to remove it all is by following these quick easy steps which leave your skin feeling incredibly soft, fresh, alive [you know what I mean], able to breathe and extremely clean!

Step 1
I use the Boots Cucumber cleansing wipes to take off the make-up

Step 2
I then use a Johnson's baby wipe to restore moisture
Step 3
I then apply a very generous amount of the Boots Essentials Moisturising cream, which I mentioned in a previous post

Step 4
I leave the moisturising cream on [which has been massaged into/around my entire face] for about 2 - 4 minutes and then rinse off using warm water.

Step 5
I then give my face a quick rinse in cold water
Step 6
I reapply a small amount of the moisturising cream and ensure I work it into my face the same way I would with my lotion

Step 7
I then steam my face for 10 to 20 minutes - - - -
Boil the kettle, allow it to stand for 2 minutes, then pour the water into a suitable bowl [only halfway]. Place the bowl onto a hard surface [on a table at which you can sit comfortably works a treat] and then hang your head over the bowl ensuring you do not sink your face into the boiled water, of course and cover your head with a light weight towel. Once finished, I wrap the towel around my face and sit until it has almost cooled down

Step 8
I do another quick rinse with cold water, pat my face with a towel [do not dry completely] and then apply a small amount of my lotion/cream [I use Aqueous, or Germolene. Yes, the antiseptic cream!] and some lip balm
maybelline baby lips dr rescue too cool
TIP: If you wear make-up every day and feel this entire routine is a bit much to carry out before bed each night, do so on a Sunday but, apply a face mask beforehand! Primark have a great range [from just 80p at the time this article was published] for those on a budget!!

If you see improved results with this regime, 
do please share with others. Sharing is caring!! πŸ˜‰


Scroll to the end of this page for the link to my radio show.... 

Sunday, 2 April 2017


Do you know that "YOU ARE ENOUGH"? I hope you answer, "yes, I do" because, you are and, while it would be super lovely, you don't need for anyone to say it for you to know and believe it which is exactly what I Am Adored represents!

Founded by award-winning social entrepreneur and Marketing Executive Caroline Odogwu, this stand out collection of jewellery is a nod to female empowerment and aims to remind women everywhere that they are each uniquely made and adored. This, in fact, is true of everyone.

Prior to my interview with Caroline for Real Talk with Charley Jai on Shoreditch Radio [Wednesday 5th April 2017], I did a photoshoot wearing some of the gorgeous pieces from I Am Adored around London's trendy Notting Hill. For the official images please keep an eye on / visit the I Am Adored instagram account and website. 

Photography: Caroline Odogwu
Make-up [foundation only]: Sam Simon
Assistant: Brooke Berbaum [Intern for I Am Adored, January - April 2017]

Thanks for reading. 
Always remember that you truly are amazing and are more than enough, god bless x

Scroll to the end of this page for the link to my radio show....