Thursday, 30 October 2014

Review: Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector





Helloooooo!
OK so the much-awaited, much-asked-for, much-anticipated review of the Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector is finally here! And I get it, I get the hype, I totally do. If you have spots on your skin from former acne, the name of this product is enough to catch your attention. And there are good blogger and vlogger reviews on the product for the most part. I bought it months ago, obviously to clear the spots on my face and all that. To be honest, I have not been entirely consistent with this product for  many reasons, and that is why it took me so long to do this review post. I however now have enough observations to do a honest review.

How I use it: Instructions say you should use it twice daily which is what I did, except when I planned to go out in the sun and then I would skip the day-time usage. A little of this product goes a long way which is great because that bottle is small! It gets absorbed into the skin quickly and also leaves a matte finish (a plus). It has a mild fragrance too.



What it does for my skin: I used this product and in 2 days, I saw a difference. This got me so excited and I saw even more improvement in the next 7 days. My skin was brighter, smoother, and the spots were fading. Shortly after, I experienced another bout of acne, which caused me more spots. Now I am very sure it wasn't the Clinique that caused the spots, because I have used it afterwards and I did not break out. The acne just inflicted me, just because. At this point I figured I had better find a product that would keep my acne at bay, because if spots keep appearing, what's the point right? So I got the Sebamed Antibacterial face wash and used it consistently for a while. Now I use the wash once a week (will do a review on it soon-this product does what it says, only that it darkens the skin a bit!). Anyway back to the Clinique Even Better Clinical Dark Spot Corrector. When the acne cleared (read this post on how antibiotics helped me with this), I resumed using the Clinique. This time, new spots had appeared due to the acne scarring. The spots began to fade gradually though I did not get as dramatic results as the first time.
Currently I use another fade cream that is super expensive simply because I want faster results and also because I have some hyperpigmentation now. But I still love the Clinique Dark Spot Corrector and I know it's something I would want to use as a maintenance regimen.



Price: N12800 at Foschini Store at The Palms Shopping Mall. This stuff ain't cheap y'all. I had to go through many reviews to finally make up my mind about buying this.

Packaging: Comes in a whatzitcalled, clear in-between-glass-and-plastic tube with a pump and a clear cap. The pump part is a plus, as opposed to if the product came in a pot which isn't too hygienic.
Summary (My verdict): This is a great product IF:
a. You are patient
b. You do not have intense acne scarring
c. You stay away from the sun or use sunscreen (the product does say you have to use it with sunscreen)
d. You find a way to keep your spots-causing acne at bay

I think this product "plateaus" after a while. What I mean is that you may see good improvement for maybe a month, and afterwards the rate of improvement diminishes as the skin gets used to the product. I read somewhere that many products have that effect after about a year or so. One of the vlogger reviews I watched on this Clinique product mentioned this plateau issue actually. So I recommend that you give the product a 3 week break after using it for a month, before resuming using it. Just ensure you keep that acne away, use sunscreen or avoid the harsh sun as much as  you can, and use an exfoliating soap.
Will I recommend?: Yes I will, as long as you follow my advice on what to do, avoid and expect in order to enjoy this product. The truth is that, it is always better to tackle the root of a problem right? And let's face it, if the acne stops coming back or at least is greatly reduced, and if we avoid the sun as much as we can, the spots will fade on their own without any help. These products and exfoliation will only help us get there faster. So bear in mind that your focus should still be on keeping the root-cause of spots at bay. 

Overall Rating: 3.5/5 (Points deducted due to steep price and the possible plateau-factor).

PS: I don't have before and after pictures unfortunately, due to all the back and forth explained above.

Are there any other products you recommend for clearing spots?

Monday, 27 October 2014

Review: Alberto Balsam Conditioner and Pantene Repair & Protect conditioner


Hi!
I promised to do a review on these cheapie conditioners and because I like to keep my promises, here we are. 
I had bought these two conditioners months ago and have been using them consistently ever since.

Alberto Balsam Conditioner (Strawberries and cream)
How I use it: I was intrigued by the strawberries and cream part of it and felt it would be great as a cowash conditioner and a leave in conditioner. I use this majorly as a cowash conditioner.

What it does for my hair: I have type 4C (tightly coily) natural hair. Well it did a better job as a cowash conditioner than a leave-in-although if you are looking for a conditioner with a lot of slip, this conditioner will fail you. It has no slip in my opinion, and other than the pleasant fragrance, it is not something I would recommend as a wow product.
Price: About N1000, at Oasis Supermarket, OPIC plaza, Ikeja.

Packaging: OK packaging. Semi-transparent plastic bottle that helps you monitor product levels.

Summary: Best as a cowash if you are not after slip but just need something to do the job quickly. Good strawberry scent too.

Will I repurchase?: Most likely not. Would want to try something else.

Pantene Repair & Protect Conditioner
How I use it: I use this as both a cowash and a leave-in conditioner spritz (mostly for my weaves). I basically squirt some dollops in a spray bottle, add water, shake, and voila.

What it does for my hair: I have type 4C (tightly coily) natural hair. I had more luck with this conditioner compared to the Alberto Balsam one, as it has more slip, which helps to detangle knots way faster and easier. I have used this as a detangler, and as a leave in when mixed with water. I used the spritz to refresh the curls of my human hair curly weave as well.
  
Price: N1080. Also purchased at Oasis Supermarket, OPIC plaza, Ikeja.
 Packaging: Sturdy bottle. Slightly transparent plastic bottle.

Summary: This to me is an average, cheapie conditioner. Highly recommended for cowashing and for a light moisturizer spritz. It can also be used as a deep conditioner in conjunction with oils and other moisturizing products.

Will I repurchase?: Yes, though I am still on the look out for a better cowash conditioner. So it's a soft yes, not an emphatic one haha!

What cheapie conditioners are your favourites?

Friday, 24 October 2014

This weekend: Massive Clearance Sales At Kaymu SME Saturdays






The Kaymu team sent me this some days ago. Check it out! This should be a fun thing to do this weekend. :-)
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Get your fashion, beauty, gadgets and much more for the cheapest prices at the maiden edition of the Kaymu SME Saturdays!

It promises to be fun with rib cracking jokes from your favourite comedians and lots of food and drinks!

There will also be exciting  freebies to be won!

Date: October 25th 2014

Venue: LCCI Conference & Exhibition Centre; 10a, Nurudeen Olowopopo Drive, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos.

Time: 12 noon.

EVERYTHING MUST GO!!!

Attendance is absolutely free!!!!

For more information email: smesaturdays@kaymu.com.ng or like our facebook page @facebook/kaymu.com.ng
 
Laterz!
Fola

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Nailed It!: 08 (Calcium-infused base coats)


Just a brief update on my nails and progress in terms of length. Well, so far so good, but what I really wanted to point out was that calcium-based base coats really do help to strengthen the nails. 
I used mine regularly and then later slacked because I would change my nail polish in the salon and forget to take the base coat along with me. It was at this slacking period that I noticed that one or two of my nails began to have tiny splits or partial splits and then eventually split all through.

I guess it was an unintentional experiment! But yeah, if you crave long natural nails, do invest in a calcium-infused base coat, and remember to pop it in your bag if you plan to get your nails done at a salon- you won't regret it!




Laterz!
xoxo

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Style Crush Feature: Cassandra Ikegbune

Eclectic. Casual chic. Creative. Androgynous. Eye-catching. Those are words that come to my head when I think of Cassandra's style. I actually do have a number of her pictures in my style lookbook on my computer and I should have featured her a long time ago!
Here's why I love her style:

She is not afraid to go all black and make it work...
She dares to rock floral sneakers with a skirt and she also wears brogues-something I do not see a lot in this part of the world...
She embraces and rocks our African print SO beautifully and elegantly...
 

 Even adding a fedora to spice things up...
She can colour-block and incorporate layers all in one outfit...
 She takes the formal look to the next level with a vintage shirt and bag, trouser shorts and pumps.
 She would wear brogues with a fitted skirt and wear a bow tie to accessorize...
She always kills the androgynous look by layering a sleeveless jacket over a loose sheer shirt and a bowtie...
 She sometimes softens the masculine lines of the look with a flowery jacket and fitted, bright pants...
 Or with shorts and sneakers...
She mixes prints and you don't even realize it...
Working with stripes, dimensions and colour...
 She dares to rock vintage pieces like a floral jacket...
 And dons a turban or head scarf whenever she wants, adding a cute twist to her look.
Need I say more? I have a woman crush on Cassandra haha! Wanna know more about her? Of course you do :-)

Please introduce yourself! What do you do?
My name is Cassandra Ikegbune and I'm a Medical student, fashion and lifestyle blogger and a model.

Tell us a bit about your blog
I blog at www.cassiedaves.com, which at first glance might look like just a fashion and lifestyle blog but its a bit more than that. I share more than my outfits and fashion views. I share bits and pieces of my life and lessons I've learnt on this life journey. I have a soft spot for those still in the process of figuring life and love out and dealing with the many issues that come with it so i try to write and share inspiring pieces. I also share some of my medical school and modelling journey on my blog.
What are 5 fashion items (clothes, shoes, accessories, etc.) that describe your personal style?
Hats - Especially the fedora and wide brimmed hat. I also love other quirky hats like the fez hat
Scarves- because I love my turban and head wraps so much.
Sneakers
Brogues
And Bowties

 Please share about 2 or 3 style tips that you think would help people improve their style
Firstly, I'll say don't just go with what is on trend.
Invest in a hat, really it adds a little spice to your outfit any day, anytime and its also good for dressing up on lazy days.

What advice do you have for fashion lovers who are on a tight budget but still want to look stylish?
Re-rock! You have to master the act of re-rocking with style. You don't have to keep stocking up your wardrobe with new things when you can wear one thing in multiple unique ways.

Where can one find or follow you on the web?
Website : www.cassiedaves.com
Twitter : @cassie_daves
Instagram : @cassiedaves
Facebook : www.facebook.com/cassiedaves


 So what do you think of Cassandra's style?

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Outing post: Pool party, photobombing, and Spur Restaurant review

Hey guys!
So this is kinda random again, though not so much because I have a casual review on the Spur restaurant later on in this post. And yes I love the place. I have been eating a bit more lately actually (no weight gain though), because I have been going out a bit more. Lagos night life could be a chore, and I feel like the only thing that makes it all worthwhile is the company I am with. The day time activities I like to go for in Lagos, like resorts, stage plays, museums, exhibitions, private beaches etc all seemed to elude me these past few weeks even though I had planned to go to these places.

So it’s been more of the night scene for me:
Ciroc pool party at the Lilygate Hotel at Lekki. At least nowadays you get to see a few people actually SWIM at pool parties which is good-unlike years ago when the water would be absolutely still throughout the so-called “pool” party lol.
Rhapsody's
Is this picture hilarious or what?! I mean this is not photo bombing, it’s like photo assault, rape, kidnapping, everything all in one! What cracks me up is the way my cuz tried to squeeze her face in at all costs; I didn’t even bother trying, when George came along I just looked away -at least my collar bone and ring made the cut!
Sip

Oh and that night I met Ghost of ShowDemCamp! I really love that rap duo and have never met Ghost before. There aren’t too many Naija artists that have impressed me with their lyrical content and SDC is one of em so yea my first with-a-celebrity pic was with Ghost so yay!

My friend took me to Spur some days ago. It was the one at Ikeja GRA, Isaac John Street. When we walked in 2 things struck me, the décor and the friendly staff.
I really like the décor - the cow-print leather seats, the cow-themed lamps, the African and Red Indian art. Not bad.
Spur prices vary-I mean you could have a good meal for as low as N1500, depending on what you want. I found their menu to be very enticing-I mean where else will you get such a large variety of unique burgers, pork ribs, steak, different platters, waffles for dessert etc.
I decided to take a few pics of the menu so you can see for yourself and have a peep at the prices too.
Steak prices are not too clear here sadly.







I ordered their mushroom burger (the mushroom sauce was heavenly) and it came with chips and onion rings. My friend ordered their Surf and Turf which was steak, queen prawns and calamari rings.
Mushroom burger: N1900
Surf and turf: N4000 excluding rice order
Then the Spur platter-pork ribs, chicken wings, queen prawns, calamari, and sole. And the ribs were awesome! I was quite surprised actually. Sadly because I was already stuffed I couldn’t eat as much as I wanted. And that’s why I am going back soon to really get into those ribs :-) My friend thought the jollof rice side order was bland though. And I think the steak was just average.
Spur platter: N6000

And the milkshake was so good. At N440 the chocolate milkshake I had is definitely giving Johnny Rockets milkshakes a run for their money if you ask me.



I think I would give Spur 4 stars out of 5. It’s not the everyday lunch spot unless you can afford it, but it isn’t a formal, prim-and-proper and stiff restaurant either. I’m glad this South African franchise came to Nigeria, and I hope they stay for good (as long as they keep up with the quality), unlike Nandos! I would recommend the ribs, and the burgers. And don’t even miss out on the milkshakes! 



Have you ever been to Spur and do you like the place?