Featured ‘day in the life of’: Laura, PhD student researching human hair follicles

This is a new segment on Dr.Ofwhat where we will feature different PhD students, researchers, students, and people in a diverse range of other careers day to day life, in a guest ‘day in the life of post’.

The first featured ‘day in the life of’ post is from Laura who created the blog http://hairwonderfulday.com/

A day in the life of Laura (PhD student):

I am Laura originally from Lithuania living in Manchester. I am currently in my final year of my PhD studies at University of Manchester. My PhD is about human hair follicles – yes you read right! I am using isolated human hair follicles from hair transplants as a model system to investigate signalling pathways and to understand better why we lose hair or get grey hair.

During my studies I developed strong passion for haircare products and how they are actually created. For that reason I created hairwonderfulday.com where I write about cosmetic products and explain how they actually work. I also enjoy sharing real facts about hair and how to have healthy and beautiful hair. My goal after my PhD is to get a job in cosmetic industry and be a part in creating the best haircare products.

6:19am- Good morning! My day always starts around 6am with a warm cup of water together with lemon. I have been doing this for the last couple of years and it is the best ‘Wake me up’, plus it really helps with my digestion!

6:34am- Once I enjoyed my warm cup of water I run to the gym and workout. I really try to workout around 4 times a week , even for 30minutes I feel like I have done something good for my body. I am considering to do 7 days yoga challenge as I notice it really allows me to relax and stretch, even though I am more like weight training girl. Should we do together yoga challenge?;)

7:47am- After sweaty workout home, good shower and getting ready for my day. I am a big foodie and I love my breakfast (the most important meal of the day!). Right now it is unbelievably cold in Manchester, even though it is spring, so I am still enjoying warm bowls of porridge with poached apple, rice milk , chia seeds and almond butter (completely obsessed!). Of course, breakfast is great time to catch up on my blogging;)

9:31am- Lab work is calling! I try to be at work just before 9am, to check my emails, organise daily schedule and start my experiments or do desk work. Here you see some slides were I have Mast cells I am staining for specific transcription factor that regulates oxidative damage. Fingers crossed it works!

12:00pm- Lunch time! In my lab 12 o’clock is usually lunch time when we all sit down and have a chat (surprisingly not talking about science too much!). I always bring my own lunch, this time I am having wild rice paella with coconut milk (delicious!!!). I noticed that bringing your own lunch everyday safes an absolute fortune, plus you can keep track of what you putting in your body. Unfortunately, I have a bit of cold so little snack for me sore throat tablets

3:57pm- Tea time and some desk work. For some reason after 3pm I usually feel more productive to do desk work so it is a great time to do some reading or analysis. Also, did you notice my cup?! It’s little things that make you smile!

5:45pm- Home time! I really try to leave work around 5pm and have a good balance (sometimes though I leave late or maybe a bit earlier). I also recently got myself a little challenge, to spot something beautiful everyday, just a little reminder how beautiful is the world. We are all stressed, rushing around and forget to look around. Even though this week has been very cloudy and grey look at these flowers I spotted outside my lab building?!

7:12pm- Dinner! Again, I am a big foodie and I love my dinner. Sometimes I cook something big or some days I just want something fast and comforting. I really like Soya-bean noodles with stir fried veggies (anything I can find in my fridge). I make a delicious sauce – tahini, ginger, garlic, pinch of salt and mix. Yum!

8:29pm- Hot chocolate and blogging time! I really enjoy reading other blogs or doing a bit of research for my articles. Sometimes I have sweet tooth and I will make myself hot chocolate (oat milk + cinnamon + raw cacoa).

9;48pm- Bed time! I usually get to bed around this time so I can still catch up on my reading, relax and reflect on my day. Depending on my mood I might read something fancy or something more scientific (always looking for blogging ideas!).  I also believe going to bed around 10pm is a healthy habit and during the day I feel more energetic and ready to grab my day. Sweet dreams!


I hope you enjoyed reading about Laura’s day, and don’t forget to check out her blog. We are looking forward to the next featured day in the life of post!


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