Friday, 29 November 2013

Thought for the Day

Not a very happy/shiny one today, just one that perfectly describes how I've been feeling lately.

Thursday, 28 November 2013

October Photo A Day

Eek, yes, this post is very delayed! I had intended to put this up at the beginning of November, but with all that happened, it completely passed me by and spent several weeks feeling unloved in my drafts folder. Seeing as I didn't then participate in the November challenge, I thought I'd share this now. I'll also be taking a break from the #FMSPhotoADay challenge for December as I have a more festive photo challenge lined up :)

1 - {Something colourful}
2 - {Light} 
3 - {Me today!}

4 - {In motion} 
5 - Saturday {afternoon} shopping
6 - {8 o’clock} (coffee time!)

7 - {What I Saw Today} (popped into Rain for some goodies for a friend)
8 - {Corner} (Love this pretty paper on my lab notebook!)
9 - {Pink} (Strawberry & Black Pepper scrub by Hey Gorgeous!)

10 - {Hands}
11 - {M is for…}
12 - {Below} 

13 - {Watching} (eyes fixed on the prize!)
14 - {Favourite space} (“our” couch at häzz coffee)
15 - {Secret} (I journal/write nonsense about my life every day. Lot of secrets in these 

16 - {Leafy} The oaks in Spring are just so bright green! 
17 - {First world problems} (Too much money spent on makeup and nail polish, no more to buy new candles, so the candles I used at bath time didn’t match. this bugged me far more than it should have.)
18 - {Still} (She’s so hyperactive that I can only take photos when she is sleeping!) 

19 - It doesn’t look like much, but this vial turned my day into {A Good Day} 
20 - Open 
21 - {Then and Now} It’s just over two years since I decided to grow my hair out. Still loving this top, though!

22 - {Change} 
23 - {Your mood today} Summery and carefree! Work days are better bare-shouldered with beachy hair!
24 - After {Dark} the margaritas come out!

25 - {Welcome}
26 - {Depth of field}
27 {Peaceful} Wine tasting at Eagle’s Nest 

28 {Just for you}
29 - Still getting used to having long {Hair} for once!
30 {Wet} It’s a miserable, rainy day today and I didn't once even feel like jumping in puddles 

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Essence - Me and My Lover

essence - me & my lover

This is another one of the new essence "sparkle sand effect" polishes and it is AMAZING! Photos do not do these polishes justice. Me & My Lover is a gorgeous pink-red shade jammed packed with texture and sparkle. This polish contains fine pink and gold glitter that shimmers and sparkles constantly. I just can't stop staring at my nails!
I used two coats to get full opacity. I've gotten three days of wear before a chip appeared on my right index finger. (I just touched it up and have carried on wearing it because I'm not ready to take this off yet). Drying time was a little bit slower than for a regular polish, but if you use thin coats it shouldn't be an issue. The texture is wonderful - just a little bit rough, not too much to screw with my texture/touch based sensitivities.
Overall, these "sparkle sand effect" polishes are gorgeous and amazing value for money - if you haven't yet, definitely go check them out! I'm sure I'm going to be using these a lot over the coming festive season!

Monday, 25 November 2013

New Video! My #1 Beauty Tip

A little while ago, Clicks asked some South African beauty vloggers to share their favourite beauty tip. Unfortunately, my original video footage went bye-bye when my phone was stolen, but I eventually got around to refilming this video!

The reason why I chose this specific product as my "best beauty tip"/"something I personally swear by" is because it's the one product that I've tried recently that's made a huge difference in the feel and appearance of my skin. Want to know what it is? Well, watch the video (it's a quickie!).

If you had to share your best tip or product that you swear by, what would it be?

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Squirrel and Acorn Earrings

Aren't they absolutely adorable?! The moment I saw these squirrel-and-acorn earrings on Hello Pretty, I knew that I would end up buying them. I absolutely love squirrels and, as a Matie, they have a little bit of extra meaning! (Our University mascot is a squirrel - the town is overrun with them! - and there's even a tradition that you're not a "true student" until you have an acorn fall on your head.) (Which hurts, FYI.) So yeah, I've been wearing these almost every single day since I received them!

I headed over to the designer and maker of these little treasures - Offbeat Melody (with the tagline "whimsical handcrafted jewelry", how could I not fall in love?). Have a look at some of the beautiful things in her store:

Do you love quirky/whimsical jewelry or are you more of a keep-it-classic girl?

Monday, 11 November 2013

Essence - Here's My Number

essence - here's my number (sparkle sand polish)

Pictures do not do this polish justice. It's a glorious textured polish that is loaded with metallic particles and holo glitter. Absolutely mesmerizing. And at only R20 a bottle? Amazing. I've had this on my nails for 5 days with a little bit of tip wear and a couple of chips on my dominant hand (but with the textured surface, touch-ups are super easy as you just repaint on the bare sections). I've also spent way too much time just staring at my nails as the sparkle changes with the light.

PS: Sorry for the absence last week. As some of you may know, I was mugged on Monday evening and my smartphone was stolen. Along with it went my recently un-backed-up photos and my photo-taking device, so blogging had to hit the pause button until I could get a replacement. Emotionally, I also needed to take some me-time. Thank you all for understanding.

Monday, 4 November 2013

Nude Nails!

essence nude glam - café olé

Just for a taste of something different, I picked up this essence polish - I almost never wear nude shades, but I really like this one. My mom had actually bought it for herself first, and when I saw her wearing it, I knew I had to get a bottle for myself! Café Olé is the perfect nude polish for me as it has enough pigment to be interesting, and is cool-toned to match my skin's undertones.

However, after my week of nude nails, I'm craving some bold nail art again. Last week, I was feeling under the weather, so I practiced a bit (while watching Monster's University!) and shared the picture below (my work in progress!) on Instagram. Hmmn, what to try next? What do you guys think?

Friday, 1 November 2013

Avon Mega Effects Mascara

Avon Mega Effects Mascara*

I know, I know - it looks scary. But it's not, I promise. It's actually pretty darn cool!

When I opened my mascara, the first thing I thought was along the lines of "it's actually quite cute and dainty!". To me, the marketing photos made it look really intimidating, but it's not really. For perspective, I photographed the little paddle alongside a lipstick tube to show its size.

Now, I know - that applicator brush looks unlike anything you've ever seen before! Where/how do you even use it? Just for comparison, I've photographed the Avon Mega Effects brush next to an ordinary, run-of-the-mill mascara brush. 

See how it's basically the same - the applicator brush is just on the end of a paddle instead of a wand. The Avon brush has spikey plastic bristles. The mascara comes with a convenient package insert that shows you exactly what to do, so don't worry - you don't need to figure it out on your own! The applicator also has the nifty trick of being able to bend, so you can change the angle to whatever is the most comfortable for you.

What does this mean for your mascara application? Well, firstly, you're approaching your lashes from a different angle. Secondly, the bendable applicator means that you can get right underneath the lashes to coat even the base of the hairs. If you're not familiar with the concept of mascara stamping, go pop over to The Beauty Department to read their post on the idea. Basically, by "stamping" mascara at the roots of the lashes, you add the appearance of volume without having to get your lashes all clumpy. I love this, because (a) I have rather sparse lashes and (b) I absolutely hate when the few lashes I do have clump together, making it look like I have 4 lashes like a cartoon character.

As for how the mascara looks on: this will obviously depend from woman to woman. Like I said, I have rather sparse lashes that are in need of volume. They are rather long, but since the tips of my lashes are blonde, I need a mascara to make them visible. So basically, what I want from a mascara is to make my lashes defined without clumping or migrating all over my face. (The worst, amiright?)

For me, this mascara ticks all the boxes. It stays put on your lashes all day without making them too stiff or crunchy. It provides decent definition and volume without clumping. The unique applicator is easy to use and the change in the way you approach the lashes to apply mascara means that you can get right down to the base of your eyelashes. And, being a bit gadgety, it made using the product a really enjoyable experience!

PS Wanna see the super easy trick to removing 100% of water-resistant eye makeup with zero scrubbing or tugging, that also leaves your lashes and skin moisturized? It's over here!