As a loyal customer of Skinnydip London and a mental health and lifestyle blogger, when I found out they’d organised an event to celebrate and raise awareness of #MentalHealthAwarenessWeek, I knew I had to go!
Hosted at the Skinnydip head office in Central London, the event served as a platform to discuss the stigma of mental health disorders and a space to work with likeminded others to find solutions to societal pressures. Skinnydip London x Mental Health Awareness Week explored stress in young people, with a particular focus on the pressure to be successful and its potential long term effect on our mental health and wellbeing.
Skinnydip London x Mental Health Awareness was organised in association with #HATESUCKS, a campaign the brand launched last year which promotes nothing but good vibes – definitely my kind of thing!
The evening consisted of food and drink, informal mental health and social media conversations, and a panel discussion with a range of lovely and talented creative professional women with a lot of thoughts and experience of the topic.
I find that in a social media culture where we’re constantly documenting exciting events and opportunities that come up, it can seem as if no one who does so is ever self conscious or anxious about it. I went to Skinnydip London x Mental Health alone and, whilst I am proud to say I’m a very independent person, I just wanted to point out that it is realistic and normal to find it nerve wracking to attend social events alone – especially if you’re travelling to a different city to get there!
So, whilst arriving at the Skinnydip House was super exciting, I must admit I was pretty nervous. I don’t know London too well so I may have taken one or two wrong turns, but when I reached the Skinnydip House I could see immediately how much time and effort had gone in to organising an event which would make its guests excited and, at the same time, completely comfortable. I was greeted at the door by a really friendly girl who works at Skinnydip HQ – she is incredibly personable and instantly made me feel welcome.
Upon entering the Skinnydip House we were offered some delicious pizza thanks to Pizza East, refreshing rosé (along with alternative soft drinks, of course), and we were treated to doughnuts from the wonderful Doughnut Time! This was set up in an exceptionally Instagram-friendly manner and did not disappoint taste-wise either!
This entrance area led through to the discussion room itself, which had been set up beautifully. When I arrived, the seating was around half full, which led me to the infamously tricky question – to front row or not to front row? I went for it and found myself sitting between two absolutely lovely girls who had also come to the event alone: Ellie, who works in influencer marketing, and Tomi, who runs her own blog and YouTube channel. We instantly clicked and before we knew it we were swapping mobile numbers and social media addresses – I’m already looking forward to meeting up with them again!
The panel discussion was hosted by Vix Meldrew, and featured Charly Cox, Lucy Moon, Daisy Buchanan and Amina Habeeb. In the lead up to the event I had actually only come across Vix Meldrew’s (hilariously honest and very important) content in the form of her blog and her podcast, so finding out about the wonderful work of the other ladies on the panel was very intriguing and exciting!
I learned a lot and consumed so many nuggets of wisdom (simultaneously the best and worst idiom ever), and I thought I’d quote a couple of my favourite lines from the night:
Social media has changed so much. It’s not personal, it’s open to anyone. Nobody has hobbies anymore, they have side hustles. The pressure is enormous.
We consume media so differently now, and mentally it’s hard to distinguish between your friend and a celebrity these days on Instagram, so comparison levels are high.
Being happy takes a lot of courage, and if you’ve been anxious for a long time it’s hard to imagine what it’s going to feel like.
On each of the seats was a gorgeous little VIP bag from Skinnydip for us to take home, which was so unexpected and incredibly thoughtful! I’m really looking forward to getting use out of the products they gifted us and, of course, letting you know my thoughts on any that stand out!
Throughout the event, the atmosphere was absolutely perfect – it was relaxed, warm and friendly. Everyone spoke to everyone and it really felt like we had formed a small but powerful community in a room of around 40 people.
Thank you so much to Skinnydip for hosting such a fantastic event with an incredibly urgent message – I gained advice, motivation and friendship from strong and inspiring women both on the panel and in the audience. #HATESUCKS