This week we talk with a fascinating and inspiring young woman. Her story will move you and her wisdom is a beautiful example of women we enjoy interviewing. Our Iles Formula Women Featuring Emma Jay is definitely one you won’t want to miss. Hear what she has to say about life lessons, her hair, and what makes her happy.
Name: Emma Jay
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IF: What is the most inspiring thing you’ve learned in life?
The most inspiring thing I’ve learned in life, is how resilient and strong we are as human beings. The difficult times we go through, the lessons we learn from that, how we overcome and get through any problems we face, and how those experiences help us grow and learn. However hard they may be, deep down we always find the hope and strength to get through any situation, we truly underestimate that strength, its easy to beat yourself down and be hard on yourself, when in reality, each and every person is capable of so much more than they believe and so much stronger than they realize.
IF: Your favourite place to visit?
My favourite place to visit is my local football stadium (Ashton Gate). I’ve supported my local football team from a young age, spending Saturday afternoons down at the football ground with my dad. It’s a place I only associate with happy memories, fun and celebration. What seems like simple, everyday tasks like getting dressed or having a shower for most people, puts my body under huge amounts of strain, leaving me exhausted and in extreme amounts of pain, because of this leaving the house can be incredibly difficult, with each outing leaving me weak and outings are limited, far and few between. But still to this day football games are somewhere I go when I’m feeling down, the atmosphere is electric and contagious, you can’t help but smile and join in with the songs and it brings back so many happy memories, there’s no doubt it’s my favourite place to be.
IF: If you were to treat yourself what would it be?
Retail therapy isn’t really my kind of thing; spending lots of money on materialistic items, it’s the little things that mean the most to me, styling my hair, doing my nails, a face mask, watching a good comedy film. Self-care is so important and taking half an hour to do a face mask or paint my nails can give me a real boost.
IF: Your ultimate dinner party guests?
My favourite comedian Jack Whitehall, I love watching his shows when I’m feeling down because he never fails to make me laugh. The woman I grew up idolizing, Cheryl, she’s taught me that with hard work you can achieve anything. Her strength and the way she deals with any battle life throws at her inspires me to keep going through the darkest times. The ultimate hair genius Wendy Iles of course! And I’d love to get to spend time with my favourite footballer, Famara Diedhiou.
IF: Relationship with your hair?
From a young age I’ve always been incredibly self-concious, I struggle to look in a mirror and feel good about myself, I remember having my hair cut at about eight years old, the hairdresser telling me “People pay hundreds of pounds to get their hair like yours!” And I sat there thinking, why would anyone want hair like mine? Growing up I spent most of my days in a dance studio, so my long, white blonde, curly hair was usually up in a bun, or braids, I never experimented with style until I was about twelve, when it was cut into a long bob with a blunt fringe, a style I tried to wear well and failed. Since then I’ve grown it out, down past my back and it hasn’t changed for the past few years. Since becoming poorly & being diagnosed with multiple chronic illnesses I spend 90% of my days in bed, wearing pajamas or oversized comfy clothes, no makeup, and my hair usually tied up in a messy bun because I don’t have the energy to get dressed, put makeup on or style my hair everyday. Because of this, it’s so important my hair feels strong and healthy for the days I am able to style it, and Iles Formula allows me to do that. As I’m becoming older, learning more about myself, I’m learning to accept who I am, accepting and embracing my flaws. My hair is one thing I’ve always been complimented on and I’m learning to love it, it’s become my safety blanket and thanks to Iles Formula it’s looking and feeling the best it ever has, helping me to feel more confident too. The first picture here shows my natural curls, my hair was dyed red for a charity event in school, that was one of the worst fringes I’ve ever had!
IF: How did you hear about Iles Formula?
I’ve been a big fan of Cheryl’s for years now, and saw the incredible work Wendy has created with her hair at different events. I noticed the mention of Iles Formula on social media, and after seeing the reviews I just had to try it, and I’m so glad I have!
IF: Do you read direction for use?
Always! I want to make sure I’m getting the most out of the product, and using it in the correct way.
IF: Do you read the composition of a product?
Definitely, I like to know what’s going onto my hair, we look at the ingredients of foods we’re putting into our body, and it’s just as important to do the same with products we’re putting on our hair and skin, especially when having sensitive skin and allergies.
IF: Your favourite Iles Formula product?
It’s impossible to choose! I love the shampoo because it’s so gentle, yet still leaves my hair feeling so fresh and clean, but the conditioner nourishes my hair, making it feel strong, healthy and rejuvenated.
IF: What makes you the most happy?
I enjoy the simple things in life, going to football games, spending time with my friends, playing with my dog, art, making youtube videos etc. I use social media to raise awareness to my illnesses, hearing comments telling me that from my videos and posts, people have learned about new illnesses, and how they affect sufferers, and other people also struggling with those conditions, saying they felt less alone, happy that there were people out there who understand what they’re going through means a lot, it gives a purpose to what I’m doing, and that’s truly the most fulfilling feeling.
IF: If you were to share one beauty tip with us today, what would it be?
Skincare is important, making sure you always take your makeup off at the end of the day, making sure your skin is moisturised and well looked after – you only get one skin and your older self will be grateful in years to come. While it’s important to take care of yourself on the ‘outside’ it’s just as, if not more important to take care of what’s on the inside too, beauty comes from within and it’s important to take care of yourself, do what makes you happy & feel good.
IF: What is being a woman in 2018?
I think being a woman in 2018 is about being happy and embracing yourself, being confident in everything you are – flaws and all, and remembering that you’re capable of achieving anything you wish to. By the day our society is becoming more inclusive, and women should be able to be exactly who they wish, while being supported for that, we have the right to vote, marry who we want, dress how we choose and express ourselves however we like. I think ‘sisterhood’ is so important, empowering women and supporting one another, we’re all in it together and together we can change the world.
This is the link to my CRPS awareness video, on my channel I make various other videos about life with disability, awareness videos for my other conditions, vlogs about life with chronic illnesses, hauls and much more!
IF: Thank you Emma for sharing your story with all of us, you are an inspiration!