At the weekend I was invited down to London to attend Britmums or #BML16 as it’s been known this year, the ‘UK’s biggest, buzziest blogging and social media conference’ with Boots Soltan.
It was my fourth time visiting The Brewery for the conference (you can read 2013 / 2014 / 2015 here) and I was looking forward to catching up with friends old and new, learning a thing or two in the sessions and soaking up the atmosphere, being in the same place as 500 like-minded bloggers.
On Friday, I was invited to a swish Mayfair restaurant, Avenue, by the Boots Soltan team to discuss summer skin care. Having just returned home from a holiday abroad and unfortunately managed to catch the sun throughout the holiday and burn my face (on the last day!), I was intrigued to find out if I had really damaged my skin.
I was joined by Alex (Bump to Baby) Carissa (Little Likely Lads) Katie (Mummy Daddy Me) Jess (Mummy of Boy Girl Twins) and Fritha (Tigerlily Quinn). The Boots Soltan team were really lovely, explaining to us the differences of UVA and UVB and the importance of looking after ourselves and our families skin in the sunshine.
It was really interesting to hear from the experts. Did you know that it takes approximately 3 tablespoons of suncream to make sure you’re protected in the sun and that a standard bottle of sun cream only has around 6 full body applications in it? It made me realise we really did under use the suncream on holiday.
Taking a closer look at skin damage
All of Boots Soltan products are 5★ rated and they offer the highest level of protection against UVA, the sun’s rays that cause deeper down damage. I got the chance to see how much UVA damage my recent holiday to Fuerteventura did to my face. I love coming home with a tanned and freckled face, and it hadn’t really occurred to me that I could be damaging my skin underneath.
The VISIA machine shows how much damage is hiding underneath the top layer of my skin. I was pretty horrified at the results as it showed my Tru-skin age was 43 (a shocking 10 years older than I am!) but was reassured that with careful application of the correct SPF sun cream, my skin age can be reduced and improve over time. Phew!
All Boots Soltan products include the maximum 5★ UVA rating to protect against deep-down skin damage and signs of ageing as well as burning. Not only this, but the experts at Soltan develop products that reflect how people enjoy their time in the sun, so applying sun cream isn’t a chore.
Did you know the amount of UV light present is less about temperature but more about the time of year and how close you are to the equator? The closer you are to the equator, the more UV there is. While UV light is still present on an overcast day, because it can penetrate cloud cover, it is higher the closer you are to midsummer’s day. I feel like I need another holiday in the sunshine to practice everything I’ve learnt! To check you’re clued up on SPF, you can find out more information here with the Boots Soltan guide.
Blogging friends are ace!
Friday evening was full of giggles, drinks and banter and was probably my most enjoyable part of the whole weekend. It was so nice to catch up with friends and just take my mind off everything else. Our table grew in numbers during the course of the night which was brilliant and it was so nice to meet new friends and learn more about them having conversed with them online over 140 characters for the last year or so!
How I found #BML16 this year?
This year Britmums was condensed into one day instead the usual one and a half days and for me, I didn’t really like it. The whole day felt rushed, the two sessions I attended weren’t long enough, or big enough for the number of people who wanted to sit in on them and I didn’t feel like I could relax anywhere with a drink and catch up with lots of other people who I had wanted to see. I missed loads of people too, isn’t it funny how people look completely different online than they do in person? I’m guilty of that too though using filters and good light as my avatars!
The hub was full of brands wanting to talk to bloggers and I spent some time with the Boots Soltan team and had a giggle in their GIF booth!
I’m not sure I’d return to Britmums next year if I’m honest, I loved the social aspect of it and would love to see everyone in the pub again next year but I’m not sure I’ve learnt much from the weekend, other than I’ve developed the confidence to walk in a crowded pub on my own, go me!
Thanks to Boots Soltan for inviting me to be their guest at #BML16