Saturday, 31 December 2016

GLOWING SKIN FROM INSIDE OUT!

So this Review is coming after numerous requests!

About a year back,  I developed acne as a result of an allergic reaction to a well known makeup brand's ingredients.  Everything I used would help for a while and then the effects would readily wear out... It was frustrating!




I was patient though, ... Trying out all sorts of remedies with you guessed it! little to no luck.

Weeks later via an Instagram giveaway I had organised, Afshin of Platinum skincare steps in to the rescue. She sent the following to me from her Platinum Skincare range to try out after having spoken to me and knowing my skin concerns...1x Glutathione pills 1x vitamin C soap, 1x Platinum Sepiwhite night cream developed by a dermatologist.

I'm a huge skeptic, I was reluctant but willing to give it a try after some research ofcourse.

She assured me that I would see results in about a week,  with the best results over a month of use. The fact that the results would be slow and not immediate, made me confident that it is in fact, a treatment and not a bleaching product.
I gave the FDA approved glutathione pills a try as well. It is an IV treatment in a pill and gave me loads of energy. I also started applying the night cream and using the soap. As my skin dries out very quickly, I wasn't too keen on the soap, but gave it a try nonetheless... It was not drying like most other soaps, and I used it alot. The soap is almost done for... Lol..




I'm not always consistent, (as you all very well know with my occasional blogging) so taking pills everyday, without skipping was very difficult. I honestly wish I had continued, till the bottle was done, so I could accurately report my results on them. I will definitely give it a try again. According to Afshin, you should take the pills for atleast a month to start seeing the difference in your skin. I loved her honesty and passion from the get go, and the fact that her skin glows, just made me want to believe in her products.



Platinum Sepiwhite night cream claims to treat Pigmentation, Scars, blemishes, acne, acne scars, anti aging, under eye dark circles, sun burn, wrinkles and uneven skintone. An all in one cream? when shops are selling us a seperate product for each skin concern...how is this possible?  Maybe it is! it is amazing how Marketing brainwashes us, in order to get more out of us.

There are alot of skin brightening and lightening creams out there, and we are all familiar with the indian brands that make huge claims, and look like we slathered Sudocrem or white shoe polish on. Side effects range from refractory pigmentation (where the skin is temporarily lightened and then pigmentation returns far worse and permanently), to burning, skin cancer, mercury poisoning and other skin irritations. As most of these creams contain bleaching agents such as hydroquinone, including steroids, tretinoin and mercury. The wrong dosage or administered incorrectly over a period of time, and above results will be more than likely.

Have you ever looked at the ingredients on your creams and lotions? half of them are tongue twisters, and the other half sound like key ingredients to a very bad experiment. We shouldn't be getting lost in scientific jargon, we are after all in the age of information. However we should be sure to get our information from reliable and reputable sources. So when you get your information, be sure that person is an expert or professional in the related field and also distinguish between opinion, suck of thumb and actual facts. More people are realising that the closer to nature we are, the happier and healthier we are...and the same goes for skincare!

Let's analyse the ingredients listed on Platinum Skincares Sepiwhite night cream:



MSH Sepiwhite or Undecylenoyl Phenylanine - is a natural compound (an amino acid) that inhibits the production of melanin (the pigment that gives our skin colour) and thus prevents pigmentation, and also proven to do so at all stages of pigmentation and improves overall skintone. Want to know for yourself? research MSH Sepiwhite.

Lemona: citric acid derived from Lemons and other citrus fruits are AHA's or Alpha Hydroxy acids that serve to chemically exfoliate the skin and thereby encourage skin renewal.

Lactic: Lactic acid is also an AHA and is found in sour milk and performs as above.


Aqua: Water

Texture of Platinum Skincare Sepiwhite: smooth and hydrating



Now besides the ingredients, the texture is particularly important! As MSH Sepiwhite, the key ingredient, has to be melted down in oil that is heated to a specific temperature before it is added to skincare lotions and creams, and if not, will result in lumps of undissolved powder...Yuck! that will tell you immediately that whoever mixed it, doesn't know what they are doing.  Platinum Sepiwhite however is mixed by a dermatologist and the resulting texture is smooth and even in consistency.

Results: within a week, my skin felt smoother, 2 weeks more hydrated, 3 weeks, blemishes were noticeably fading aways, 4 weeks and after, my blemishes are almost gone, undereye circles drastically reduced...skin feels healthier and glows. What else can a girl ask for from her night regimen!

I trust this all natural product and definitely give it a thumbs up! try it for yourself and thank me in 4 weeks! contact Afshin Rafiq, she is an absolute doll, down to earth and very accommodating. As with all skincare guys, please consult your doctor first, should you have persistent conditions that require a Doctor's permission.



Afshin Rafiq: 076 070 8160
Instagram: Platinum_skincare


Now to get a day cream that actually does what it says! hmmm...

Don't forget to let me know how it goes!

P.s. all pics are my own:)

Salaams ye All!;)





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Friday, 4 November 2016

MAKEUP HAUL: TO BUY OR NOT TO BUY?

When it comes to makeup... It saves to be in the know...

What am I going on about?

Ever bought a makeup product and regretted it after? I have!  numerous times... and once used you can't return it... It doesn't help that they are super expensive too! Especially if you love the good stuff and want your highlighter to be popping as much your favourite red lippy!

I'm going to share a few items that I love in my kit... As a makeup artist... Nothing goes to waste unless... That item is seriously useless or worse...  expired!

There are alot of makeup out there promising this, that or the other, and once bought we may find it works or just barely hits the mark.

Well,  let's get on with it! :)

Featured below:

Sunny shade from top left...Mac paint pot in rubinesque
Dior mini gloss, got these in a travel pack on Emirates duty free
Yardley Absolute Translucent powder
Max factor flawless perfection blush in 220 classic rose
Smashbox photo finish primer oil
Mac paint pot in Layin low and soft ochre
Mac studio conceal and correct duo in burnt coral and rich yellow
Palladium foundation primer
Loreal lumiere 500 gold mania
Catrice cosmetics made to stay highlighter pen and made to stay inside eye highlighter pen.

The Mac Paint Pots are basically long wear cream eyeshadow.



Paint pot in rubinesque and max factor blush above. I love the Maxfactor blush... It suits most skin tones and the colour pay off is great. Be sure to test it along your jaw before you purchase.

The rubinesque definitely felt like one of those annoying "what I was thinking, I should have tried it on" purchases. It is a medium sheer product... So if you tap it on with your finger or a brush.. You are likely to get the most coverage.... It's really pretty and looks amazing when the light hits it but it mostly shows up gold on my eye which is lighter than my hands.. But I'd definitely use it as a base for a similar colour eyeshadow or use base under to get the most of this colour. It suits the fairer or darker complexions and looks quite bland on medium complexions like myself. I also tried a lighter base and darker base,  the colour show was disappointing. I just have it in my kit now to use for ombre lips or as a base on my cheeks for layering highlighter over. Check for sensitivity of your skin when using as a highlighter, highlighter base or ombre lips. BTW it's pretty balmy in texture compared to the other pots.



Side by side... The Mac paint pots from left to right are rubinesque as discussed above, a coral gold colour, then is soft ochre, which is yellow toned and layin low which is brown with a pinkish undertone...

Soft ochre and layin low are fantastic as eye primers or as a base to apply before applying your eyeshadow. They are long wearing, prevents your lids from creasing, dries to an almost powder finish, and allows you to get the most from your eyeshadows.

Colour payoff using these as a base are excellent as long as you use the right colour. Mac paint pot in painterly is a pinkish shade great for lighter skin tones, I do not have it in these pics. Soft ochre for medium to light skin tones. Layin low for medium to deeper skin tones. Also check out other options like Indian wood.

Apply by dabbing on with your finger or a brush... Ensure that no skin is visible under your application... It must be smooth, streak free and even in colour on the lid.




I was surprised by this Yardley powder...it is really fine and translucent, which means it won't change the colour of makeup already applied when used over and great for baking without caking. You can apply it over those areas that are prone to oiliness, like the forehead and nose, and use minimally over the under eye area unless you are baking, in which case allow the powder to sit for a few mins... then gently brush off. You must give the shades buff and bare a try... Buff for highlighting and bare for a little colour for medium toned skins.

The Loreal lumiere gold single eyeshadow saved me when I really wanted a gold eyeshadow and couldn't find anything suitable.  This shadow is best applied with a dabbing motion... It is great for creating an ombre lip by using a dark lip colour and then applying it by dabbing onto the center of your lip.


The Palladio foundation primer comes pretty close to the smashbox primer for a fraction of the price. It mattifies and gives a smooth base to glide on foundation.

My favourite is the Smashbox priming oil, it provides hydration,  skincare and gives a gorgeous lit from within glow... Great for all over application for dry skin,  but best on the cheeks and chin for combination skin. It is pricey,  but you get alot for your buck!

This primer will also liquify or thin out your creamier foundation and can be used to make your matte lipstick into a glossy one... Is great as a base for highlighter and blush. Best of all you can use it at night to hydrate and fortify your skin.

Mac duo conceal and correct is well known and used by many to correct the blue under eye colour with burnt coral and then add brightness with the rich yellow... I think this product is great but when it dries and as the day proceeds it cakes...best to use the smashbox primer oil first on the under eye area, then the duo,  to keep it looking fresh.




I love the Catrice pens... A quick highlighter for the Brow bone area that stays put all day. The inside eye pen is pinkish white and looks alot more natural and less like the 80s stark white used on the inner rim. It will give you a wide eyed look and is great for those days when your eyes look tired and you need to look fresh!

These dior glosses remind me of Mac lip glass and Essence cosmetic glosses.... That are great as a topper over other lip products or colour especially matte lipsticks and paints because they are sheer and have a high shine like most glosses. Love using them in the evenings when I sport a Smokey look.

I just bought a pack of colour pop lippy Stix and will hopefully get to review those soon.... But before I do.. You guys have to check out what went on at the Urban Bliss spa on the 29 October 2016...so brace yourself... Next post will be jam packed!! Who I met,  liked and didn't like so much... Mmmmm....

Just kidding.... I wouldn't tell you guys that.. Kindness and a good heart always wins!!! Irrespective of how others may be... You get to choose your behaviour;) Be you! Be real! Peace out!!

Xoxo Always!!
Stylexplora

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Monday, 10 October 2016

EVENT REVIEW: "DISCOVER YOU" BY URBAN BLISS WELLNESS

On October 29th, 2016, UrbanBliss Wellness Spa held their "Discover You!" event at their premises, 85 Barry Hertzog Rd in Emmarentia. It was definitely worth the wait and attendance. I am positive this event will set in motion a host of future collaborations with the Spa,  InshaAllah.

To learn more about the spa click here:my review on the UrbanBliss spa
on Instagram: UrbanBliss if you were there...you are probably on their page!;)

You can also view and book their ground breaking treatments and purchase their advanced skincare: UrbanBliss website

The Discover You event was aimed at empowering women of the 21st Century who juggle work, home and family. It brought together a host of some of the best in the local industry from fashion, makeup, makeup organizers, to scarves and beauty treatments.

The following are the amazing people who collaborated alongside Urban Bliss to make the day especially memorable:

Stylexplora: yes!! I was there...!  This time in the capacity of  Makeup Artist. I provided one on one consultations,  and did a demo on the pool deck providing Makeup advice and tips to the value of R3500 exclusively to those who booked for the demo. My audience were spoiled with random gifts from makeup to gold metallic belts, turbans and headbands to the value of R1500.

Laboutique: suppliers in 100 % authentic premium quality Makeup. They supply everything from beauty blenders, Kyshadows, kylielipkits,  Morphe, Kat Von D, Nikki tutorials, and the list goes on.... Click here to check out their 100% original products on Instagram: Laboutique

Atelier Dajee: Fashion Mason retails and custom makes innovative and unique high fashion... Also featured at the SA fashion Week. The ladies were spoilt as he produced a fashion show just for the Discover You event in his demo slot, and all of his garments were available for retail at the venue and a few lucky winners snatched up vouchers. Click here to see Atelier Dajee Instagram: Atelier Dajee


Glambox: suppliers of the very on trend perspex organiser boxes that glams up any space and can be used as storage for a multitude of items and products around your home, business or events...A beautiful table was laid out with all of these organizers including selected Swiitch Beauty Brushes which were also available for retail. Swiitch beauty is a premium supplier in brushes and everything makeup related.

To view Glambox gorgeous boxes and organizers click here to go to Glambox Instagram: GlamBox

To view Swiitch Beauty, click here: Swiitch Beauty


Khalees Fabrics: specializes in unique scarves,  hijabs and headwraps... Gorgeous summer fabrics and prints to choose from.. They did headwrap and turban tie tutorials on the deck in their demo slot, click here to view their Instagram: Khalees Fabrics

Papushka: supplies a beautiful range of luxury Kaftans and sleep wear that are proudly South African.  Click here to view Papushka on Instagram : Papushka

Tanya Sachs: Celebrity Stylist who provide invaluable styling info in the first time slot of demos

Rashmi Threading Studio: touted as the Brow guru... who provided her professional services of face and eyebrow threading, grooming and tinting as well as waxing.
To Contact Rashmi: 011 486 0512/3

Finally some pics courtesy of Urbanbliss and Glambox!


Face beats by me on beautiful Marna! My table filled with gorgeous goodies from Laboutique and my kit! My scarf in dire need of ironing!

Turban tie tutorial by Khalees fabrics

#wanteverythingonthistable part of Laboutiques setup!

Ms. Ayesha Rajah owner of UrbanBliss Spa along with blogger Nonhle Thema sure have Pout perfection!

Atelier Dajee creation!

Atelier Dajee

Gorgeous dresses by Dezines4u

#Browgame strong by Rashmi!

Khalees Fabrics mesmerising the public with their wide range of scarves!

Beautiful Safwanah of Glambox handing out a gorgeous Glambox prize to a very lucky winner!

Papushka and their stunning range!

Mouthwatering affair! I mean eclair!

Cool Going ons!


The Stylexplora winners! Aren't they gorgeous? they were smiling throughout my demo!

Big ups, high fives and a huge Thankyou to the remarkable and gracious team of UrbanBliss Wellness!
 

Simply gorgeous! 

I spot a few familiar faces! ;)
There were tons of pics...so I may share more on Instagram....btw! a big little giveaway coming up on Instagram that you don't want to miss! Makeup, fashion, skincare, art, and more! click here to go tot my instagram: Stylexplora on Instagram and watch out for it!

Love and Salaams Always!
Stylexplora


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MUMS KNOW BEST!

We all have a few recipes from our mums, stashed safely to whip out as needed, because we know, they are tried and trusted. Here are a few of my mum's brilliant recipes and a few of mine:


My absolute favourite homemade biscuit or tart.... 

HUNGARIAN TART


500g butter
4 tblspoon oil
2 beaten egg 
4 tsp baking powder
4 teaspoon castor sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
4 cups flour

Method:

Cream butter and sugar,  add oil and essence and beat well. 
Stir in the egg. 
Sift flour and baking powder over and make a dough. 
Divide dough into two. 
Press half the dough into a greased and lined large baking tray. Spread with raspberry or strawberry jam, chopped nuts,  dates,  and 100s and 1000s. 
Cover with remainder dough by crumbling it over and sprinkling 100s and 1000s 

Place in oven and bake at  150deg for 45mins. Enjoy! 



THE BEST BHAJJIAS EVER (light and fluffy, these are never oily)

1 cup gram flour
0.5 cup flour
0.5 tsp crushed chillies
1 tsp dhania seeds crushed
Salt to taste
1/4 bunch dhania
1 onion
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp dhania jheera  or just jheera if added dhania seeds
2 or 3 tsp chilli powder
Fresh green chillies chopped
Mix above ingredients with little water to make a sticky or tacky bhajiah mixture.
Add lettuce, chicken, potatoes or sweet corn, take a teaspoon at a time and deep fry..


SWISSROLL (not as many eggs as your average roll but more delicious)



Recipe:

3 extra large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 tblspoon oil
1 tsp vanilla essence
1cup flour
2tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup milk

Preheat oven 200 degc, grease swissroll tin and line with wax paper.
Beat eggs till frothy and add sugar a little at a time and beat till thick and spongey.
Beat in oil and vanilla essence.
Sift flour,baking powder, salt...stir in the flour mixture alternately with milk.
Spoon into prepared tin.

And bake for 10 mins or till golden.

Place onto damp cloth and roll up with cloth and waxed paper....once cooled..remove cloth and wax paper and spread with filling of choice and decorate as desired... Get creative with fruit, chocolate, ice cream, fresh cream, nougat, diddle daddle popcorn, fondant...combinations are endless..


Super fast, one pot mixing, bake, decorate and enjoy crunchy goodness!!!

125 g butter,
1/2 cup heaped brown/white sugar,(I used brown)
1/2 cup flour,
1/3 cup self raising flour,
1 cup coconut,
2 tblspoon cocoa,
1 egg lightly beaten,

Melt butter on low...till melted. Add in the rest of the ingredients except egg, mix with a wooden spoon till just combined,  then add lightly beaten egg..don't mix too much just mix till blended...you don't want the sugar to dissolve... Press into large 30cm greased casserole dish. Bake at 180deg for 20mins if want soft and  25 mins if want more crunchy...spread with melted chocolate (mix with fresh cream if you like it wet😜) and crumble peppermint chocolate over...aero or peppermint crisp
Butternut Soup:( creamy and wholesome without the cream;P)

Also try the Swissroll dessert and Scotch Crumpets, from the Indian delights.... I've used those recipes since I was little with my mum. I'm sure many of you did too😉

CHICKEN CHOWMEIN:

Super easy, fast meal...

2 packs Maggie 2min noodles
Handful Frozen mixed veg
500g chicken fillet cubed
Sauces of your choice.... I love Nandos black pepper sauce, wellington sweet chilly, mayo, steers prego adjust the amounts to your liking
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tspn ginger garlic
Salt to taste

Boil noodles for 8-10mins...watch carefully till aldente or cooked through, firm but tender.
Marinate chicken in spices, salt and sauces, then quickly pan fry with frozen mixed vegetables till done.
Toss the chicken mixture with the noodles in a pot on low heat for about 5mins to let the marinade permeate the noodles and then serve with a good side of crunchy salads or croutons.

I know you will love these recipes....Please keep my sweet loving mum and dad and my family and I in your duas..

Next up...Save the date 29 October event in Jhb you don't want to miss!!
Including my 2016 beauty buys you have got to get your hands on.. 





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Thursday, 6 October 2016

HIJAB STYLE SPRING/ SUMMER TRENDS 2016

Salaams Guys!

I know! it's been a while since I last Blogged! But I'm going to skip the excuses and otherwise very "Legit" reasons and go straight into this post. I have been wanting to curate new hijab outfits as per your request, for a while, so here goes...the following are some of my favourites, trending, or just plain gorgeous hijab style looks and ideas you can easily recreate in your own special way!


Denim:


Denim is hotter now than it was yester year!
I recently had the opportunity to style clothes for Legit stores in Gauteng, and their "Made to denim!" Campaign was awesome!

They had me patching, blinging, lacing and braiding their denims, all pluses in the denim trends. The whole idea was to move toward personalising and cutsomising your purchases...and thereby celebrating individuality.






Ripped hemlines are all the rage and you can do them yourself.... Click here: How to rip your denims Diy


The ripped Denim trend is still vey much in! Just be sure to check that holes are patched under, like above. Avoid overly ripped looks though...they can border on tacky and homeless;)

Above and below are the asymmetrical or one sided slit tops that have been trending lately. Slits in general are larger than life...on dresses going from floor to high waist, on skirts at both sides till above hips and even on jackets and abayas. They give you a chance to show off other pieces like printed pants, ripped denims, textured skirts and lace slip dresses worn underneath.


P.S. I seem to notice alot of hijabis wearing the same type of outfits today, almost robotic. There is hardly any innovation or imagination put to use with the exception of a few. Ladies, be proud of who you are, you can follow trends but wear it your own way and in a way that best suits your personality! If you have an unusual stance on fashion, remember that makes you unique! not weird!

The trends I discuss are to assist you guys to create more combinations out of what you have, to open your minds to other possibilities, to better spot items worth investing in and to streamline your spending on clothes and take the hassle out of "What do I wear today?"


Ofcourse, the above look can be adapted for Muslimahs by lowering the hemline, opting for holes to be patched and wearing a loose hijab and sweater. The White shirt is a classic and you can never go wrong with this multifunctional piece from wearing it under or over as a jacket or 3rd piece...it is timeless with a pair of denims.


Extra length sleeves have been spotted on the runway and on the streets of both New York, Milan and Paris Fashion weeks. Sequins and bling are paired up with more relaxed pieces like denim, palazzos, and flaired dresses and skirts.


Asymmetrical looks are hypnotising as they draw the eyes down those brilliant design lines.


Satin Robes anyone? the next big trend! but I'm pretty sure we got it covered as Muslimahs in the open abaya department (wink wink)....In terms of details, embroidered pieces are making a huge comeback from clothes to accessories.

Tie up shoes, sneakers and chokers are still running strong together with off the shoulder looks and sleeve details. These are not the easiest trends to pull off as a Muslimah. We still have to maintain cover and inners and underscarves are excellent solutions.




A very rare combination that works wonderfully for hijabis as worn by Basma K above.. An asymmetrical slit dress worn with a skirt instead of pants....


Sohamt in white sneakers and an overall.... Pinafores and overalls are a current fave.... Basic designs in solid colours can be worn for years to come and printed patterns should be kept classy by using stripes, Aztec,  polka dot, houndstooth and plaid to name a few that are timeless.

Floral print dresses, floaty skirts and bright hues will always be a plus in Spring and Summer..if you are small built, or petite.... Opt for smaller prints closer together to avoid the print visually overpowering your small frame. Slip dresses are coming in all textures and patterns... And like with any trends....get them cheap or forget about it;)



Slip dresses in looser fits can easily be worn over inners and under smart or casual outer pieces that are thin and light like lace, chiffon and cotton.



I love the dress and sneakers trend, I know all busy women relate;)

Whatever you wear.... I hope you feel beautiful, happy and enthusiastic to power through your day...

Next on the blog I review my new hauls, and age old recipes tried, tested and handed down from family to family. Don't forget to subscribe to get immediate updates. ;*

All pics credit to owners...

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