Sunday, 30 November 2014

Make up haul-plus a few reviews

I am not much of a makeup freak but I go crazy sometimes, and this time I bought a lot of stuff from the Kiko Store at Westfield before heading over to Boots for more "candy"!

At Kiko, I bought lipsticks and lip pencils (plum and pink shades) and a skin tone corrector-so reviews are coming up on those. At Boots I was just moonwalking through the aisles and filling my shopping basket! I got some Revlon lipsticks in different colours-dark brown and pink shades, some No 7 makeup- eye shadow in purple shades, Beautifully Matte primer that promises to prevent shine, and brow and lash gel/mascara. At the Benefits stand, I asked for concealer for my dark under-eye circles and the MUA found a perfect match for me from their Boiing concealer line. 
I got hair colour spray in dark brown and some eye makeup brushes from EcoTools.
About a week ago I got this lovely lipstick by Seventeen, named "Make an entrance" from the Stay Pout line.
It is an orangey-peachy colour and I like using it as a light stain on my dark lips. But sometimes I layer it up also to give the look in the picture below, and in my former post as well.
Swatch on my wrist
Staying power is just average. Got it for about 4.50 pounds.
And the Ecotools eye makeup brushes have been serving me well to be honest. I was looking for a concealer brush and some dupes for my other Real Techniques makeup brushes so when I saw these I jumped at them. I particularly love how they are double-ended.
The 2 brushes have got an angle brush, shadow brush, one for smudging, and a concealer brush.
And my new found love. Bitter-sweet new found love. DIY wax strips from Veet. Saw this and decided to try it. I had to try it because I know that waxing is still the best and relatively affordable form of hair removal, though quite painful. Shaving causes bumps and all that, but waxing gives way longer results, with no bumps. Depilatory creams could be too harsh on the skin, not effective enough, or cause skin rash in some cases. The cons of waxing is of course the fact that it is not as cheap as shaving or depilatory creams, you may have to go to the salon to get it done (this product obviously solves that problem), some salons do not practice good hygiene (this product also obviously solves that problem) and the one most women talk about- it hurts!
Well I have a relatively high pain threshold so it wasn't so bad for me. But it did sting-no denying that. However I love the results so far. I used almost all the strips though. I hope I find this product in Nigeria-I really do. For now I will just have to stock up on it (about 8 pounds)-maybe get three. That should do for 4 or 5 uses.


Thursday, 27 November 2014

Review: Sleek Brow Kit

Eyebrows are like a major part of the face because they frame the eyes and the face, and well-groomed brows are a must for the proper lady! There are thousands of make up products out there for grooming the eyebrows, and in as much as I love my dark brown Davis brow pencil for filling my brows, I have always craved the Sleek Brow Kit because I wanted to try out a different method (gel and powder).
Here is a quick review of the Sleek Brow Kit I recently got, in dark. I would basically try to compare this kit with the famous dark brown Davis brow pencil and show you what I feel about both methods in terms of results and application.

It comes in a two-palette case that contains the gel on the left, the setting powder on the right, a mirror, and a small tweezer, angled application brush and setting brush.

Application: What I like to do with both the Sleek Brow kit and the brow pencil is to draw an outline of the shape I am aiming for first, then filling in that line. Because my brow isn't naturally arched, I have to draw an artificial arch- sort of. I find that the application brush for the kit which like I said is an angled brush doesn't give me as much of a precise line as the Davis brow pencil. Also, I can create more of a "hair effect" with the pencil when filling in the line, by making small strokes from the base of the line to the top of the line. 
I hoped that the Sleek Brow Kit would save me some few minutes when doing my brows, but really, it takes just the same amount of time for me. 

Price: In Lagos it goes for about N1800. I got this for about 8.50 pounds at Superdrug.

Packaging: The kit comes in a sturdy, cute case with a mirror. It is small and not bulky at all.

Results: Because of the setting powder in the kit, my brows do look darker and fuller when I use the kit. The Davis brow pencil gives me a less bold look (not noticeable in the pictures), which is my preference actually.

The brow kit was used for the reader's left view (my right eyebrow) while the Davis brow pencil was used for the reader's right view. (my left eyebrow).
Note how my artificial upper arch for the Sleek Brow kit eyebrow was obvious (sort of lighter), unlike that of the Davis brow pencil eyebrow.

Also the eyebrow "tail" for the Sleek Brow kit eyebrow was not as defined and as smooth as the Davis brow pencil eyebrow.

Make it work for you: For me, I prefer to use the Davis pencil to draw the outline, and then use the Sleek brow kit for filling in, using the setting powder when I want a bolder look. Or you could even use the Davis pencil or any other pencil to fill in and use the setting powder to set. It all depends on what you feel happy with.

Summary: Overall, I like this product as it isn't expensive, has a powder and gives me more options for filling my brows.

Overall score: 4/5

 Have you tried the Sleek Brow Kit and did you like it?

Monday, 24 November 2014

Guilty pleasures, healthy meals and the gym life

I have been quite sparse with my posting lately haven't I? Well that's because I have been reasonably occupied with stuff here and there and then I decided to take some time off to spend time with family and friends as well. So I have been busy trying out new experiences, visiting new places, and trying out new meals as well! I am such a foodie and I think I may have gained about 2 kg in the month of October! So I have started my workouts again and this time I decided to take advantage of the relatively cheaper gym subscription fees here in the UK.

Guilty pleasures
 But back to food, my sis took me out for lunch after church one Sunday to Giraffe, and we had a beautiful mocktail called "strawberry smash" that I loved so much, I think I would call it my second favourite cocktail/mocktail after the mojito! I think it's the mint and lemon in it that just does it for me. If you haven't tried this before, trust me you want to!
 So this was one of my guilty pleasures-nachos. Well I couldn't finish all that of course haha!
It was my sister's birthday and we had cake and sparkling white wine. Do you see where I am going with all this? It has not been easy trying to eat healthy, what with my sister's husband always trying to get me to try new goodies and just spoiling me with treats, like mince pies, fish and chips, courvoisier chocolates etc. #lesigh.
 He really loves cooking and we would walk round the shop and pick up things like oxtails, lamb and stuff and I would be thinking, "Gosh Fola all this is gonna make it more difficult for you to stay in shape whilst you are here!".
So I have been trying hard to curb the fatty and unhealthy foods and eat in moderation, trying to stay in shape and work out, eating plenty fruits and veggies etc. But really, why do the unhealthy foods taste so great and the good, healthy ones, not sooooo great? It's just not fair!
 Anyway, I discovered bubble tea about 2 weeks ago. It's basically like a smoothie and the "bubble" part is actually flavoured jelly-like bubbles that you crush in your mouth-you can see the bubbles in the green smoothie on the right. If you ever see Chaboba anywhere please go right in and get yourself a cup of this-it's too real! My cuz had the green apple with honeydew bubbles. As for me, in my quest for the healthy option, I had green tea, red guava with strawberry bubbles. Didn't taste great at all compared to my cuz's choice! I think I will leave my healthy teas for when I am home.

Healthy meal discoveries
I  discovered some new meal combos and foods that are not just healthy but also very tasty-just be moderate with your portions! For example, I have tried scrambled eggs with tomatoes, alongside low-calorie rice cakes. I usually have some fruit by the side.
I have also been LOVING granola and no-fat Greek yoghurt (not the sugar and preservative-dosed ones). I am so obsessed with this. It is so high in fibre, nutritious, healthy as heck, and tastes glorious! I just hope granola and active yoghurt is something I can readily find in Lagos.
A few times, I ate yoghurt with my fruit. If you haven't tried it, please do-it's awesome.

I have been sticking to things like basmati rice, fruits, veggies and healthier options as well.

Sudden Gym Rat
So I don't know if any of my Nigerian readers know how much cheaper it is to be a gym member in other countries compared to Nigeria? I mean I can't even afford a gym membership on my own because it is really highly priced in Naija, but in the UK for example, you can do a 4-month membership for just a 100 pounds or whereabouts. I was excited about being able to go to the gym whilst in this country so what I did was to book a couple of gym sessions and exercises classes such as spinning, strength training, step exercises, aqua-aerobics etc. I am really looking forward to seeing results in a month or so!
 Let's see if I can achieve a more toned body and also get rid of that lower belly pooch!


Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Natural, homemade masks for removing a tan

Hi everyone,

I thought I should share on these 3 natural, homemade tan-removing facial masks that really work!
OK, first you need to know the following about these masks before you continue reading:

1. You need patience with natural remedies. If you are patient, you will see results in a week.
2. You need to be ready to make a fresh batch of the tomato-and-lime mask every 2 days.
3. For severe pigmentation, these masks may not be "strong" enough to take care of the issue.

So here are the deets on the three facial masks that I use every now and then, particularly when I have been out in the sun and see that I have darkened a shade-I burn really easily so I tend to darken pretty quickly!

Tomato-and-lime mask
This mask is my absolute favourite. Tomato has exfoliating properties and lime has lightening properties. The lime could be switched for lemon. This mask stings a bit, though in a minute or two the sting subsides. All you need are half a tomato and the juice from half a lime to last you two days. Just keep it in the fridge after using it. I usually wash my face and apply it on my face. It dries pretty quickly and I sometimes apply it a second time. I leave it on for an hour and then rinse it off.
Some people add cornflour to make it into a thick paste so that the mask stays on. However I just feel the cornflour would make it a little less effective and I don't use it.
My only con about this mask is that you have to blend the tomato in a blender with a few drops of water, compared to the other masks that require very little preparation.

Honey-and-lemon mask
This is my second favourite. The honey has to be the natural kind though. One tablespoon and the juice from half a lemon is enough for the face. Leave it on for an hour and then rinse off.

Turmeric-and-water mask
For this mask, you can use oil, your night cream, lime/lemon juice instead of water. You only need to add a few drops of water to make the turmeric into a paste and then rub it on for an hour before washing off with soap. 
The general issue everyone has with turmeric is that it stains like mad. You have to make sure you don't get orange stains everywhere!

What homemade masks have you tried?

*All images unless otherwise stated sourced from wikipedia*

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Ankara fashion...but ankara socks?

Hi peeps!
Do you like African print? I do. I really do. And I hate the fact that I do not wear it as often as I would like. I would like to wear a pair of batik, adire or ankara fitted pants or a skirt to lunch or the movies some day. You know how we only wear ankara print to weddings and to church-I love it when I see people wear it on other occasions. That's one of my goals for 2015. Wear more african print! 
I am obsessed with that cropped top and peplum skirt above. And pairing a maxi ankara skirt with a denim shirt is just so creative!
 Don't you just love the lady's jumpsuit with the cut-out back?
Or the zipper insert on this skirt?
 Or the simple, casual ankara top-tee teamed with denim shorts...
 And this cropped top and mini skirt...
 And this beautiful mixed-print jumpsuit, incorporating our famous ankara stars print with leopard print...
 Denim shirt on a peplum ankara skirt (too fab!)
The ankara insert along the side of this elegant maxi dress coupled with the headwrap....

Ankara print is really GORGEOUS. I have seen ankara bathing suits, bags, shoes, phone cases (I made one here), suitcases, umbrellas, sofas...but when I stumbled on ankara socks on instagram some days ago, I began to wonder if we aren't taking it a bit too far?
 In a way, I like it, because after all, the bright and playful socks are kinda in vogue now, but still, I am not quite sure what to think about it.
 There IS something very quirky and pretty about it though. I just had to insert these pics in my post to find out what you all think!
So what do you think about our African print and also would you wear ankara socks?

"Gotta have it or make it stop?"Lol

*pictures courtesy @everydayafricanfashion and @llulo on instagram*