Why Fashion is So Wonderful at Creating Inclusion

Why Fashion is So Wonderful at Creating Inclusion

There is a common misconception amongst the general public that the fashion industry is full of stereotypes, social stigmas, and ostracism. Now, while it could certainly improve on all of those, fashion is definitely much better than it is made out to be. In fact, it can actually have a hugely positive impact on society, as the universal love of beautiful clothing, applying makeup and styling hair can bring people together.

disabled london scout fashion week wheelchair model samanta bullock
Take a look at my Interview for London Fashion Week Scout

This is especially the case for minority groups, and as a woman in a wheelchair myself, I know how included fashion can make you feel. Life can often be difficult for disabled people; some people simply don’t know how to approach someone in a wheelchair, and that can become quite challenging. So, the fact that fashion gives everyone, regardless of disability, ethnicity or gender, the chance to feel valued, is amazing.

Although, some people will still disagree and wonder how exactly fashion creates such inclusion. Well, that’s why I’ve put together a short list, to show that fashion is more than just a focus on appearance!

Boost Self – Love and Confidence

One of the most obvious ways that it helps is through the enhancement of self-love, and the increase in confidence. If you’re happy with what you see in the mirror, then you’re going to feel great about yourself. Once you acquire that sense of self-love, you won’t fear to talk to new people anymore, and that’s when you’ll realise that ninety-nine percent of people are open to getting to know you.

Gives You a Reason to Socialise 

samanta bullock wheelchair model disabled fashion wedding bride
London Fashion Week Project

If you love dressing up, getting your make up on, or styling your hair, then it just gives you that extra motivation to go out and showcase all of that. Therefore, if you keep socialising, and getting out the house, you’ll feel included more and more, and won’t feel like you’re isolated at home.

It’s Empowering

The fact that you can express your personality through the style of clothing that you choose, or the appearance that you go for, is very empowering. It highlights that every human-being is different, and that’s why the world is such a special place. The moment you feel so included, is when you recognise that everyone is in the same position, and we’re all just trying to display originality through our fashion choices.

Feel Comfortable with What You’re Wearing 

Fashion is one of those things that truly gives you the opportunity to feel comfortable in your clothes, no matter who you are. Typically, being in a wheelchair is a struggle when it comes to comfortable clothing. For instance, jeans often limit mobility and hurt due to the hard materials. So, being able to find fashionable clothes that fit well, and allow you to feel comfortable, is a real empowerment.

Creates Healthy Discussions

fashion Disabled Model- Wheelchair User
Saint Martins Talk

One of the ways that people don’t see fashion as positive, is the way that it always creates discussions. No matter who you are, you could easily chat to someone about the latest fashion trend, or the newest piece of clothing that is dividing opinion. You see, that’s a great thing, as it means no-one is excluded from conversations, as we can all have our opinion on fashion.

I hope you’ve found this article useful, and it would be great to know. Please leave a comment below!

 

5 Ways to Lose Weight

5 Ways to Lose Weight

exercise gym wheelchair back posture samanta bullock model
Back Exercise at Gym

Some many assume that it’s difficult to keep your weight in check while in a wheelchair, but losing weight actually revolves heavily around your diet. Of course, staying active and exercising is a key component, which is why I always try to get to the gym each week, but nutrition is the main factor.

There’s a common saying that you can’t out-train a bad diet, and that’s why I focus on eating a healthy diet. Other than being dairy and meat-free, I try to keep everything as balanced as possible, because that’s what allows me to perform at my best. In fact, I don’t eat this way to lose weight, I eat this way as it benefits my body.

Ultimately, you should only attempt to lose weight if you truly want to. If you don’t, then be happy with yourself and love your body, because beauty comes in ALL shapes and sizes. These tips are just to give you some help for improving your diet if you wish…

Courgette Pasta

Pasta is loved by millions across the world, including myself, but excess carbohydrates are stored around the body as fat. So, to keep your carb intake low, then you can make some delicious vegetable pasta with courgettes. Slice it into strips, spiralise it in a pasta machine, and cook it. Then, just top it with your favourite sauce, and you’ll have a lovely meal.

Green Juices

It’s no secret that a lot of people hate vegetables. However, vegetables are a terrific source of nutrients, vitamins and minerals, which will allow you to maintain your good health. Therefore, why not try to consume all of the goodness from vegetables in liquid form instead? You can add vegetables, and accompany them with fruits and other things to improve the flavour.

Banana Ice Cream

Ice cream is one of those things that I love to snack on while watching a great movie or a binge-worthy TV series. Although, traditional ice cream is full of fat, and isn’t recommended for a healthy, balanced diet. But, there are ways to increase the nutritional value of ice cream, and a way that I love is to make my own banana ice cream.

Fruit for Dessert 

There’s no denying that having a dessert to finish off your meal is popular, but devouring a chocolate sponge or a sticky toffee pudding won’t do your weight any flavours. So, why not substitute those common, unhealthy desserts with a scrumptious bowl of fresh fruit? You’ll get the same sweet flavours, but without all of the fat!

Soups

One of the best ways to satisfy your appetite, and curb any tendencies to snack in between meals, is to enjoy a hot soup. When it comes to soup, its extremely quick and easy to make, and you can choose whichever ingredients you desire. For instance, you could have a basic tomato soup, or you could choose to fill it with tons of different vegetables.

Use these tips for your diet, and they’ll help keep your weight at a level you’re comfortable with. But, remember, you should always be happy and confident with your body no matter what!

 

5 Things That Make Your Bladder Angry

5 Things That Make Your Bladder Angry

No-one likes feeling under the weather, but wheelchair users are unfortunately prone to bladder infections which tend to occur suddenly. These are extremely uncomfortable, and the burning sensation when urinating, along with all the other symptoms, are very unpleasant. 
Considering I’ve been in a wheelchair for many years, I’ve picked up on a few things that either cause the infection or aggravate it even further. So, I’m going to provide you with 5 things that make your bladder angry, to ensure that you don’t pick up any nasty infections. 
Lemon Tea
Many people believe that lemon tea is great for the diet, and in most cases, they definitely are. But, I’ve found that it actually upsets the bladder if you drink too much of it. Now, this isn’t just relating to lemon tea; there are plenty of acidic fruits, such as pineapple, grapefruit, and lime, that will have the same negative effect. 
Therefore, I recommend that you don’t drink too much lemon tea, or incorporate too many alternative acidic fruits into your diet.
Caffeine 
You’re probably wondering how caffeine has ties to bladder infections in wheelchair users, right? Well, as you probably know, anything with caffeine in dehydrates the body a lot, which doesn’t allow the bladder to perform optimally. 
This could be things like coffee, green tea, and energy drinks, so it’s best to monitor how much caffeine you’re consuming. If I do consume caffeine, then I’ll make sure to drink plenty of water to compensate for the dehydration. Usually, this will be twice as much as my usual intake, so around four liters throughout the day.

Alcohol

samanta bullock infection wheelchair model 5 Things that Make your Bladder Angry
5 Things that Make your Bladder Angry
Again, alcohol is another one of those substances that quickly dehydrates the body as you drink it. Of course, we all like to enjoy ourselves and have a glass of wine or bottle of beer from time to time, but it’s important to consume enough water to keep your system hydrated. If not, you’ll most likely notice an infection the next day. 
So, I’m not saying you need to restrict yourself from living your life, but to prevent a bladder infection, have some water with you as well.
Public Toilets
Generally, public toilets are tremendously dirty, even if they may have a clean appearance. You see, there is a multitude of people that use public toilets, and it only takes one of them to pass on bacteria for you to pick up a bladder infection.
If you can wait till you get home, then that’s the best option. But, if you desperately need to go, then just make sure it’s clean because if you hold it in for too long, that could also cause infection.
Catheters 
Wheelchair users often use catheters to make it easier to go to the toilet. But, as you’re inserting it into your body, it’s crucial that you ensure it is clean before you use it. This includes disinfecting the catheter itself and also making sure your hands and body are spotless as well.
EXTRA TIP:
One last thing that can really help, is turmeric. Arguably, turmeric is the most powerful natural inflammatory in the world, and if you’re travelling, it can be convenient to just mix some turmeric into your drink. This will have a positive impact on your body, and you’ll notice the difference in your urine.
SAMANTA BULLOCK – PROOF THAT A WHEELCHAIR DOES NOT HAVE TO BE AN OBSTACLE

SAMANTA BULLOCK – PROOF THAT A WHEELCHAIR DOES NOT HAVE TO BE AN OBSTACLE

I had the honour to be featured on the Disability Talk Website. They have news about what goes one in the disabled world, interviews, and much more that you must know. Check them out! Here is part of my interview, for the full article please go to the website in the link: https://disabilitytalk.co.uk/2017/12/20/samanta-bullock-proof-wheelchair-not-obstacle/

Wheelchair model disabled samanta bullock
London Fashion Week

…With a background in fashion, I am passionate about inclusive fashion and leading a healthy and active lifestyle. I live in London and I am passionate about sharing my knowledge and life experiences to raise awareness of inclusion, fashion, and healthy lifestyles. I have been in a wheelchair since 1992 and played wheelchair tennis from 2003 until 2009 representing Brasil and winning a doubles silver medal at the 2007 Para Pan Am Games. …

 

Many people dream of a career of being a model. Not so long ago, a career in modelling would have been completely unthinkable for wheelchair users. As a model, I am subject to exactly the same demands as every other model. In other words, I have to be very disciplined when it comes to my diet, I have to be active, and, of course, I have to look after my appearance ….