Saturday, 23 September 2017

All about the Gina Myers Masterclass hosted by The Dream Catching Girls!

Stylexplora is more than just a username. It is about exploring style in every way...not just fashion, food and makeup, but lifestyle too. I find events such as photoshoot, workhops and conference styling very interesting, and one can learn and grow so much from them.

As many of you know, I have held makeup workshops, collaborations and private one on one lessons before, and I really wanted to attend one instructed by another Makeup Artist, entirely for the experience.

I was so happy to be contacted by the Dream Catching Girls.
The Dream Catching Girls are beautiful sisters Nabeelah and Ra'eesah Akoon, and they were hosting and putting together a makeup masterclass, by Gina Myers Senior Makeup Artist for Estee Lauder, and Artist to celebrities.

Nabeelah Akoon left, Gina Myers centre and Ra'eesah Akoon Right

Gina Myers, she is so sweet.. She posed for me.. #Totalslay

I love the name and the logo... Branding on point! 

The cost of the workshop was R2600 for the class to be held on 16 September 2017, at the Living studio at 157 Woburn street, in Benoni between 1:30  and 5pm.

The Cost was much lower than what other workshops have been held at, and was offering greater value. The Dream Catching Girls also announced the goodies to be included in the goodie bag on their Instagram, before the event. That got everyone excited, and who doesn't like bonus goodies with giveaways on the day. 

The Address was The Living Studio, in Benoni, and it was ideal for the masterclass!

Pic by The Living Studio

Duration was 3,5 hours of class time with a half hour for registration at the beginning, and there would be time for refreshments and eats.

I arrived, large vanity case in hand, filled with my personal makeup essentials for the class. The ladies were relaxed in the patio, waiting their turn, as others were pampered with Glam Glow masks. I never tried glam glow masks before (shocker!;P), so was really looking forward to it.

We were served chilled, sparkling beverages and ice lollies, perfect for the heat! The lollies were special...I'm pretty sure they had figs and rose petals in them...either way, it was refreshing!

So Gina Myers, Celebrity Artist, casually comes up to chat with us, a bubbly personality and clearly the life of the party. She cheers us on and amps us up for the masterclass to ensue. At that point, the ladies couldn't wait to get started.

I was really impressed, everything was set up beautifully! A strong Spring theme, flowed seamlessly through the venue. A living wall cascaded with names of the sponsors involved, made for a gorgeous photography backdrop. Next to it, a Glam Glow consultant was set up and masking attendees.

In the lounging area, there were clear vases with white flowers, fern printed scatter cushions on the white couches, and hanging from the ceiling were bubble decor and a clear acrylic coffee table on a grey textured carpet. It was light, airy, minimal and in hues of green, white, and grey.

Photography by Izzy Akoon

The classes began a little later than scheduled, as to be expected of any event, as there were lots of ladies to get their masks done including me. So masking was then postponed to the break and after the event.

We got to our seats in the studio. Tables were laid out in a v style and covered in white, with a mirror for each attendee. It was 3 to a table and enough makeup remover, cotton pads, ear buds, and tissues per table, in acrylic jars were laid out. There was also a branded Gina Myers notebook with a cute little pen for notes during the class, and a large goodie bag for each attendee.

To the the side of the studio, Gina's sister, Kimmy K was set up and was the vibrant DJ for the event. At the front and center stage, was a Benefit counter filled with Benefit goodies to be used by Gina through the masterclass. Next to that was a chair for Gina's Model, Thameenah Saint. To the other side of the studio, was a shopping addicts dream, a whole isle of Benefit goodies to test, swatch and buy. I kid you not, the entire wall had tables laid side by side. What I loved most, was the number of Benebabes, erm I mean consultants, who were on the floor to assist attendees.

Classes began on a high note with DJ Kimmy K setting the tone with Gina's favourite beats. Attendees were expected to bring it, to win it...(I just stood there awkwardly...what to do? should I have shaked my booty for that stunning Kiki beauty hamper? #diaryofahijabi) and so the first giveaway was done.

Benefit's Lauren Engelbrecht, National Brow Artist then showed attendees how to become masters of their brows. It was super informative about the new Benefit brow Products, and how best to use them. Lauren's bubbly personality and lively attitude kept the class interesting and fun.

She's awesome! Went into pose mode as soon as I lifted my camera... I gotta learn that! 

Gina then took center stage as she demonstrated a gorgeous on trend eye look, with close attention to technique. She then went onto perfecting the Base, highlighting and contouring,  and the attendees were mesmerized by the transformation. Another giveaway was done, and we then took a break for tea and snacks.

Outside the studio, alongside the patio area, a self-serving buffet style tea table had been laid out. There were white and silver dishes, with an ensemble of sweet and savouries set up on a picnic style table. There were delectable chocolate brownies, pastel hued macaroons, chocolate truffles, open chicken sandwiches, chicken salad cups, fresh fruits and more. Compliments to the chefs, everything I tasted was delicious, and the presentation was elegant and couture like.

Pic by @makeupbynkay 

Pic by @makeupbynkay 

I quickly took the opportunity to get my Glam glow Mask done by Innocentia of Glam Glow. She used the Youth Mud mask, which tingled slightly at first, but that's how you know it's working. My skin did a 180 after this mask, it was tighter, smoother and refreshed. I'm definitely a fan and hope to get this one soon, who wouldn't want facial results from one mask application?

We then headed back, for another giveaway and thus ending the masterclass on yet another high note. Gina, the DCG's and Benebabes stuck around for a while to mingle and attendees got their Benefit fix before we all bid adieu!

I got to chat with Gina a little more, and she is so inspirational and passionate about making a difference, and women empowerment.

It was highly evident from the looks the attendees had recreated, that they left feeling confident in their new found abilities and knowledge.

Apart from learning more about Benefits product range, as a makeup artist, I didn't learn anything new from the masterclass. However, it was still a beautiful experience as a whole, a ladies day out filled with goodies, fine food and pampering, and one that I will treasure. Meeting Gina Myers  and The DC was wonderful! I  made alot of good connections and it was a pleasure meeting blogger Rogue by Nablah and Makeup by Nkay

Make by Nkay and Roguebynablah 

The DCG pulled off a stunning well rounded masterclass with a celebrity Artist, and they did it with panache! Gina was clearly comfortable and passionate teaching the class,  and worked at a pace that was great for beginners.

I wish both Ms. Gina Myers and the DCG sisters everything of the best in their future endeavors.

So,  I know you want to know what was in the goodie bag....Here they are...
So cute! A little coloring in fun from DCG

Sample size glam glow mask

Mini lip kit and nail colours from Ciate london

Mini gimme brow and the are real mascara from Benefit

A full size bath milk from the living studio, a mini diy manicure set from Love from, and botanical facial steam from Mimi Botanicals

A full size cooling citrus setting spray from Kiki

A compact led mirror from Selfie light SA

Sample skincare from Skinfood Apothecary

Discount vouchers and a Benefit brow gift voucher

DCG sponsors... Pic by @izzyakoon 

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Friday, 8 September 2017


We live in the information age. We shop, blog and network online. When events come around to actually meet people and connect with them, we know that we need more like them. One of my favourite places to do all of the above is UrbanBliss Wellness Spa, especially when they host new events.

The spa, besides being an excellent retreat in the heart of Johannesburg, is also known for their enthusiasm and willingness to go above and beyond, to assist local businesses to connect with clients from diverse backgrounds and readily support Women empowerment.

On 26th of August 2017, I was invited to their "Women's Day out" event held at their premises, 85 BarryHertzog Rd, Emmarentia. This time my friend, Nonhle Thema the lady behind #yummymommy, a mom, actress and motivational speaker held her event at Urban Bliss.

A brilliant line up of women were set to speak to guests, who booked in advance to attend.

Nonhle gave a motivational speech on taking care of you. She got each member of her audience to rise up and speak about themselves, who they are, what they do, how they got there, and who they would like to connect with at the venue. This took a while, but it was worth it, as my eyes opened to new possibilities. I watched women really appreciate and respect each other for their journeys. Knowing each other made all the difference and allowed many to make new business and other beneficial connections.

Guest speaker Uyanda Mbuli, a former actress, and current Tv producer, activist and businesswomen spoke about overcoming adversity with boldness and enthusiasm. The guests were considerably greatful at this point in time, as the talks were powerful and moving. If you would like to hear a short segment of her here Uyanda said....

Ayesha Rajah owner of the Urban Bliss Spa and A&I importers gave her insider tips on how to age gracefully from your 30s-60s, best treatments and products to maintain radiant skin and how she broke into the spa and beauty industry.

Ayesha and I

Ayesha pictured with Nonhle and Pearl Thusi
At a previous event at the spa.. 

When I got to the venue, it was buzzing!. Outside the spa, at the entrance, were women eagerly waiting for their eyebrows to be done by the Kenosis beauty crew. They were taking full advantage of the complimentary service offered to all guests in attendance.

There was also a pop up stall with the cutest kiddies garment by Trendy kids. Trendy kids stocks affordable branded and unique wear for kids from birth to 14 years.

On entering the spa, I got to browse the Pop Vintage rail set up in the reception area. They sell on trend, high street fashion. If you have a fetish for this season's pearls, embroidery, frills and sleeve details, you will love their latest catalogue.

This is so cute! 

Love this! 

If you have seen my YouTube video for my virtual tour of the spa, you will know what I mean by the pause area. In the pause area, ladies feasted their eyes and bought lingerie from the beautiful brand Undercover lingerie, run by an uber amazing woman, my friend Farieda Mahomed.

Ooh La la

The event could not be complete without a make-up stall and Face on Fleek was there, armed with both high end original and replica makeup to suit a variety of budgets and preferences.

In the next room, ladies were all ooh and aah with delight, as they got their complimentary pamper sessions done. I still think about my first back massage, facial and hand massage at the spa....I really didn't know how much I needed a hand massage till I got one. It was the perfect reset needed to tackle my stressful days after. I should know, designing can be quite laborious, especially on my hands and back. The spa is definitely worth visiting for your pamper session, as well as your highly necessary reset. The staff are friendly, respectful, always neat and committed.

Outside, on the pool deck, Hair on fleek was set up, offering some beautiful deals on hair extensions and weaves. There was also Limited By Letoya with beautiful kids wear.

Also on deck were Zaynah modest apparel and KhaleesFabrics.

Zaynah is an on trend brand created by my beautiful friend Aadilah Tootlah. Zaynah is well known for their classy draped garments ranging from luxe robes, throws and kimonos to kaftans, dresses, scarves and more.
Btw, I'm after those crushed fabric scarves should check those out too.

Classy pieces 

Khalees fabrics is well known in the industry. Their signature scarves featured on the runways of SA Fashion week and at the HFWSA. Keep your eyes peeled for the jaw dropping looks my sweet friend Tasneem Ismail created at the HFWSA. Her scarves are unique and I absolutely adore my signature Khalees scarf. Click here to see her styling it at the Womens day event...Tasneem in action

Those who know me well, know that I may not look like it...but I really love my food. Get me to an event, feed me well and I'm a happy chappy! UrbanBliss always goes the extra mile when it comes to offering a complete service and the Women's Day event was no exception.

First came out koeksisters and samoosas from The Industry Bakery...

"Oh my word....this is soo good!" These were the words that dropped from my mouth when I bit into one of those koeksisters. Ask Aadilah Tootlah, she was there with me. They were honestly the best koeksisters I had tasted in years. I was transported to my childhood trips in Cape Town, a kid trying her very first, genuine homemade, recipe passed from generation to generation, koeksister. It was that awesome! Don't take my word for it, hit the industry bakery when you can and you'll know exactly what I'm talking about.

Then came out these gorgeously presented finger foods. There were trays of chicken skewers, chicken wraps and haute bunny chows. I was salivating at that point, but practiced restraint until everyone else would eat.

I had to leave early and was sorely disappointed for missing out, and being so disciplined. However, you don't have to....get in touch with I cater for you by Radia Bhyat for complete halaal catering.

As if that was not enough, there were cakes and bakes from a new establishment called The Bake Factory. Mouthwatering and in large servings, I would have loved to have tried what Andrea the manager at the spa, described as "so good I couldn't choose between them."

If you ever plan to have an event, consider UrbanBliss as they also provide complete halaal catering and impeccable service with a smile.

Check my previous post on more about Urbanbliss.... Click here>>My 1st Urbanbliss review

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