Word up!

Words are my job. It might not seem like it here, but it is what I spend my time doing for eight and a half hours a day.

To quote, “words don’t come easy.” Crap adage, but it’s true. I struggle, the average person struggles, and clients most definitely struggle.

I spent a year working at a small company that specialised in content strategy. Content strategy basically focuses on the planning, development and management of content, but it’s also more than that. It’s about user experience, finding a harmony between design and ideas and creating useful and usable content.

I’m not a content strategist, but this is how I understand it, and when you think about it, it makes sense. Of course when you create or present something to the public, you want their interaction with your product to be seamless!

Content strategy isn’t just about the words on a page. It is also about the media – be it images or video, for example – that is used. If the end package isn’t well structured, informative and interactive, then you’re screwed.

My point? Even though content strategy seems obvious to me – and probably to you – it isn’t really put into practice. To be fair, South Africa is a little behind the times when it comes to this concept, but I’m finding the longer I’m in the industry (and by industry, I really mean the professional real girl world), it is a concept that gets left by the wayside.

People just don’t care. Or consider themselves experts. Or think that their content is fine the way it is. But as any writer, editor, content creator, artist, etc knows, a fresh pair of eyes can open new worlds. Often, when we’re working hard on something or baring our souls, we get blinkered. It happens to everyone.

A company who offers a content/strategy service hasn’t established itself just to show you how crap your content actually is – they’re there to help you reach your full potential. That’s how I like to see it at least.

This is actually a rant in disguise 😉

My company gets a lot of packaging work. What this means is that our client already has their design – they just need us to help with production.

This is all great and well, but every single one of these clients are experts in their own craft, not in the craft we provide. Many of these jobs don’t even make it onto my desk, which is a problem, and goes straight to our designers to ensure everything is set up correctly before we send it to print.

Today I read some packaging while I was eating my lunch. It was just sitting on the boardroom table and I couldn’t help but take a squizz. Consistency and grammatical problems are the things I see a lot of. Malapropisms, too. Or just stilted text with no flow.

I saw many of these when reading the packaging mock-ups. The design is beautiful. If I saw it on a shelf in the shops, I’d be drawn to it. If I turned the package around and read the back – like I usually do – I probably wouldn’t buy it because of all the niggly things and niggly things irritate me… but that’s just me 😉

So, here’s a product with great potential. The client has been featured in a number of publications. She has a great product with a fantastic design but she falls short when it comes to copy. I can tell you now that using me didn’t even enter her mind because she has a “it’s fine” outlook when it comes to her own copy. Just fine is not enough! Make it right! Make it perfect!

I work on newsletters, websites, press releases, posters, flyers…basically anything that needs copy. I sit in during brainstorming sessions. We all have a voice here and we all contribute, be it copy-related or not. This is a process that works! It means that we don’t just focus on the look, we focus on the feel too.

This isn’t everyone’s process, and not every company or person understands or values good copy. Pity, because I feel like most of the time I have to beg the accounts manager, after reading crap copy, that his clients need me. I’ll do it for free, damnit!

Equally, there have been situations where I have edited, written or rewritten copy for a client and it has been rejected. This is because:

  1. Instead of taking the time to go through the changes, they have opted to go with their original copy. This client is usually busy, unconcerned about copy in general, or doesn’t care – they just want their project launched NOW; or
  2. After looking at my copy and seeing what they feel are only minor changes (even a tiny tweak can affect readability!), have decided to keep their own words; or
  3. They have a shit ton of arrogance – they believe their copy is better. Maybe a few of them are right (obviously not to me, but that’s the nature of subjective work…), but often, the copy doesn’t serve their intended purpose or just sucks, but they refuse to believe/see/understand this. It’s an affront or insult to suggest otherwise…which it isn’t.

Sigh. Just sigh. Anyway, my point here is that when creating, consider the other elements. Copy is just one of them. What is your purpose? Let all the other elements enhance these goals. If you think it’s good, have someone look at it. Take the time to test things out, have people read, look, and experience your creation and find out what they think. What is working? What isn’t working? Yes, it’s touchy-feely, but it goes a long way to putting forward your best work.

Critique isn’t a bad thing, even if it’s hard to take! I need it. We all need it. I find it difficult to take sometimes, as I’m sure others do too, but it can be incredibly useful.

I’ll be taking the time to listen carefully to the feedback I receive – and hopefully, hopefully, they’ll do the same.


The monthly wishlist is back

I guess I’m back on the lust list bandwagon. I didn’t do one last month… I sometime find these posts make me want to go out and buy all the things (but I still populate a list on my phone, so it’s kind of useless, right?) I’m trying to curb my spending, but I figured since I’m already keeping a list, I might as well publish one.

I’m really on a skincare THING at the moment. I think it’s the looming 30s which has inspired this new focus. I also just really like taking time out for myself, and a good skincare regime is a great way to do this.

Exuviance Super Retinol Concentrate – R850
Paula’s Choice 1% Retinol has been on my list for ages now, but at R1000+ for 30ml, I just can’t. Even at R850, I can’t really…but it is more affordable if I were to splurge. Which I probably won’t (but I really want to).

La Mer Limited Edition Bronzer
Just click that link and admire the beauty that is that bronzer. It’s been on my radar for a few months now (and the want has been real!) but I just kind of stored it away and that was that. Now I’m seeing it’s selling out fast and it’s creeping back into the foreground again because I really do want it but sjoe. I don’t even know if you can get it in South Africa. It’s probably gonna be around Dior price and up. That breaks my heart. Probably another item that won’t ever happen. RIP.

Loccitane Shea Melting Honey Exfoliating Sugars – R425
Ridiculously priced (can you see a trend here?) but it’s another thing that has been on the OMG-I-want list for AGES and now I see it’s available in South Africa… at a cost. Sob. There’s nothing I love more in this world than exfoliators… The scrubbier the better. I have no idea how this would fair but um, shea and honey? Sounds heavenly!

Exuviance Triple Micro-Dermabrasion Face Polish – R765
Basically, everything I want is too expensive to buy. This stuff sounds amazing. It’s both a physical and chemical exfoliator, and gets the thumbs up from All Dolled Up. I may actually consider this when I finish up my Ren Glycolactic Acid Exfoliator (which isn’t any time soon!) It is a bit more expensive than the Ren but I think it’d be worth it.

MAC x Star Trek
Where do I even begin with this? I pretty much want everything. I’m not a Trekkie (sorry, guys!) but the collection looks absolutely amazing. On my list are: Luna Luster Powder (pink), Highly Illogical powder (red/brown) (BOUGHT), To Boldy Go pressed pigment (red-ish) and The Naked Time pressed pigment (beige)

The Beauty Box Mini Organiser – R599
Another item that’s been on the list for ages. I’ve been wanting something to store my every day crap in and I think this will be perfect. I decided to just get it. It also came with a free accessory (nailpolish stand, lipstick stand or brush holder – I chose the brush holder). Very happy with it!

Here’s to hoping I stay on track this month!

July junk

Can I just be totally cliche for a second and go OH MY GOD HOW IS IT AUGUST ALREADY? Where has this year gone? I don’t get it. Time is clearly not my friend!

I can safely say that July was a much better month overall. Phew. I also managed to spend very little money on crap, so yay to that! I’ve been trying to stick to a budget but I must say, this weekend just past has been so naughty. I went to the movies, bought popcorn, bought myself the Inglot AMC 77 gel eyeliner… Oh, and I bought myself lunch. And breakfast. Ugh ugh ugh. And this weekend coming up, I’m off to see Suicide Squad… Bye bye money. Okay, well hopefully not. I just have to rein myself in.

Onto June highlights…

  • Homemade pizza in the north. Lots of fun!
  • Christine’s going away party… bitter sweet. Was nice to catch up with everyone, but yeah. Blergh. Come home, already! It was also my first time at Pirates (wut?!)
  • Friend’s birthday bash! I was actually feeling really sick leading up to the birthday party but I decided bugger it, I’m just going to go because I haven’t seen him in ages. It was really great fun. We ended up doing sushi a few days later
  • Dinner at a friend’s. We all had to make a dish and bring it along. This was so much fun and the food was delish. It’s safe to say I have some seriously talented and kitchen-savvy friends.
  • Movies with the mister. This was nice 🙂

So, the empties. There’s a lot of samples/one use products in this list. Is that cheating? Ah well.

Johnson’s 3 in 1 make-up removing lotion
You don’t even want to know how long I’ve had this. I’m not even entirely sure… I got this in freaking HIGHSCHOOL and that was like 10 years ago. Oh god. Okay let’s just leave it at that. This worked pretty well actually! Wouldn’t repurchase mainly because I appreciate cleansing waters and cleansing oils a lot more but this wasn’t bad – even after all those years (dear god, what is in it??!!)

Cettua Pore Control sheet mask
I’m not sure this actually helped with anything… Pores aren’t like doors, people. They don’t just close or disappear or even shrink. Stuff can only help with the appearance of your pores. But that aside, I love sheet masks for the me-time involved and this was nice.

Lush Butterball
I got this for my birthday…last year? Could have been longer, to be honest. I used to be a big bath person. I’d make a thing out of it… a glass of wine, my kindle, hot-hot water and bubbles and just sit there for an hour turning into a prune. And then I stopped. I blame this on my brother. He is also a bath person but with a very bad habit of not cleaning the tub out after he’s been in there, marinating… Shiver. So, I stopped. But a few weeks ago, I scrubbed the hell out of the bath and decided I should treat myself. It was lovely and the scent of this bomb was amazing…vanilla and shea I think? It also felt very nourishing.

Nip+Fab Glycolic Fix Serum
This was a “nooooooooo” moment for me. So let’s have a little chinwag about this product. When I use it, I don’t see a difference in my skin BUT when I stop using it? Oh my gosh, things are just not the same. That is when I realised I loved this product. I stopped for awhile thinking this step was just a useless one. A few days later, I changed my mind. Other South African beauties will probably know that this isn’t available in Clicks anymore (sob.) so I actually repurchased this from Superdrug in the UK (it was on sale) and used Aramex Global Shopper to ship it here.

Skoon Moisture Gel Superfluity (5ml sample pot)
I really like this, although the scent is a bit too natural for my liking. It absorbed into my skin really quickly and left everything feeling comfortable. I’m currently using another pot of this.

Skoon Cleanser + Make-up Remover (5ml sample pot)
Everyone should try this. I love it. I think I’m done with all the sample pots of this stuff.

Tony Moly I’m Real Rice Mask Sheet for Clear Skin
Thanks to a friend, I got my mitts on two of these and two of another kind (which you’ll probably see further down the list). I love Tony Moly. I love sheet masks. I love me-time. I love looking like the scariest serial killer you’ll ever see. So basically, what’s not to love?

Soft Silk Body Scrub (Happiness/Lavender scent)
I am SO incredibly happy that this is out of my life. It’s supposed to be a scrub but the granules were so microscopic, it may as well have been called “gel”. It was finer than sand, finer than sandblasting sand (and that shit is fine). The scent was also really artificial. Basically, this did nothing for me. Bye!

Tony Moly Red Wine Pore Care Sheet Mask
Here it is! Same as above. Love.

Skin Creamery Coconut Jojoba Baobab Every Day Cream for Face and Body (sample sachet)
I got a sample sachet from Kamersvol earlier this year and only just got around to using this cream. Oh my gosh. I understand the hype. I didn’t use it on my face but I did put it on the tops of my arms, chest and thighs and it was love and first whiff. Also, this sinks in really quickly and doesn’t leave you sticky. The smell that stood out the most for me was spearmint, and I found this really soothing as I drifted off to sleep. Need moar.

Catrice Liquid Camouflage High Coverage Concealer 010
I’m pretty bleak this is finished, mostly because when I went into Dischem on the weekend to pick up another tube, they had fuckall stock and onto 020 was available (if this is your shade and you shop at Cavendish Dischem, go! There’s only 2 left…and one of them is opened). Currently I’m trying to finish off my Benefit Boing concealer, which I got a few years ago when I was in the UK. I’ve hit major pan on it, but it has become stiff and almost unusable… That was until I plonked a drop of the Skoon Cloud Manuka oil stuff in there and smooshed it around… Good as new.

Essie 3-way Glaze
This is a base coat, top coat and nail strengthener. I loved this but it turned goopy towards the end (there was only a bit left) so I’ve said goodbye to it. I’ve already cracked open a replacement – Essie’s Gel Setter, which is pretty awesome.

Skoon skincare


It was way back in January of this year when I placed my first Skoon order. I had seen Azraa from Prettiful Blog talking about the trial pack she received from Skoon. At the bottom of her blog post, she listed the prices and a link to the trial pack. I clicked on it immediately and ordered.

Unfortunately, at the time of paying, I didn’t realise that Skoon had actually discontinued their trial packs but they very kindly sent me an email saying they would honor the order.

Basically, I haven’t looked back. I ordered 3 trial packs from them (each were catering to a different skin concern) so I could try out a bunch of different things. I am still making my way through the sample pots, so really, if you’re at all interested in the brand, head over to the Skoon website and get yourself a few travel sizes – the packaging has since changed (more superior now, in my opinion) and they really do last long enough to give you a good idea of how it will work for your skin.

Skoon Cleanser + Make-up Remover (Gel-to-milk)
This is the star of the show for me. As you can see in the picture above, I have the full size (100ml) product. This is quite a natural smelling product, so just a heads up to anyone sensitive to scent.

I pump about a R1 size onto the back of my hand and dot it around my dry face. At this point, I usually still have my makeup on. I dab on my forehead, a bit on each cheek, a little on each eyelid and whatever’s left on my nose and chin. Then, the rubbing begins!

Because I’ve distributed the product across my face, it doesn’t tug at my skin and instead feels really balmy. As I work the remover into my skin, it turns into an oil. I make sure to get it between my eyelashes – don’t be shy! Next, I wet my hands and carry on rubbing the remover into my skin. At this point, the cleanser becomes a milk. When I’m ready, I rinse it off!

Easy as that. My skin always feels amazing after this, and super clean without feeling stripped. It’s soft, smooth and ready for the next step.

Skoon Ruby Marine Mask
This is the first pot at the top of the pic – sorry about the quality. I got this as a sample when I purchased the full size cleanser. I really didn’t think it would work for my skin – I have combo/oily skin – because I have read reviews about how intensely hydrating it is, but the helpful ladies at Skoon told me not to worry. I will never doubt another word!

So, I usually use this mask after I’ve exfoliated, as I like to combine exfoliating and hydrating treatments. This is a solid balm… Think coconut oil. Scrape your nail or utensil across the top and you will get a nice little chunk to work with, and believe me, a LITTLE goes a LONG way. I like to warm this up in my hands and then apply it to my face. It spreads amazingly well, and although my face does look super shiny or greasy while this is on, it doesn’t make me break out. I usually keep this on overnight and wash it off in the morning. Love it. Seriously.

Skoon Purifying Cleanser
This is the second little pot. The purifing cleanser is actually a clay cleanser (also called Whitewash) and again, totally amazing for combo/oily skins. I like to use this after I’ve used the makeup remover if I’m feeling particularly congested.

Like the other Skoon products I’ve tried, this stuff is NOT stripping. But this pot of magic really does leave your skin clean. I think this may have to be my next buy. I’m just afraid I will go through it way too quickly. I tend to use quite a bit of this (my sample pot is on its last legs). I slap a thick layer on my still wet skin, massage it in and leave it on for a minute or two before washing it off. So nice.

Skoon Moisture Gel Superfluity
We’re almost there! This is a moisturiser, and is recommended for someone who wants a light moisturiser… so basically, someone like me. They do have a moisturiser for every skin type though, so definitely check out their selection.

I think their website describes this moisturiser as light, without a heavy feel, and I totally agree. I find it sinks in really fast and leaves my skin hydrated but not sticky to the touch, and it holds up really well under foundation. I can’t say the same of all the moisturisers I’ve tried in the past!

If I need an extra dose of moisture, I usually mix a drop or two of their concentratesinto the moisturiser… which leads me to…

Skoon White Cloud Manuka Concentrate
According to the website, this is not an oil but an emmolient… so that’s cool? It apparently promotes the reduction of breakouts and if you have blackheads, this is a good one.

My skin is incredibly good right now so I can’t say for sure if it’s this, a combination of products, a steady skincare routine or just luck, but I really like this stuff, and I would probably go ahead and buy the full size.

As mentioned, I mix this in with my moisturiser if I’m having a spotty moment, or just feel like my skin could do with some TLC.

Skoon Rosehip C+
And this is the stuff I usually use when I have a lot of redness (as in, all the time) or my skin is being super sensitive. Rosehip is supposed to be really good for your skin and this mixture contains a bunch of skin-loving ingredients, so why not?

Needless to say, I’m a big fan of Skoon. I think they’ve done an amazing job, creating products than can be mixed and matched depending on your skin concern and I especially love the fact that you can customise your skincare regime using their various concentrates. It’s very hands on and makes me feel like a proper chemist 😉

I look forward to seeing what else these guys come up with… Until then, I’m pretty much loving everything I’ve tried.

May favourites

May favourites1

  1. Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water
  2. Shopping and lunching with Jess
  3. Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Serum
  4. Sigma F80 Flat Kabuki Brush
  5. MAC Fix+
  6. Birthday burgers with friends
  7. Sheet masks (aka how to look like a serial killer…with good skin!)

Good riddance to June

I feel like I can breathe again. For a moment there, it felt like my heart was drowning. This month, my brain really showed me how incapable it is at correctly analysing situations, so much so, I was left in a flat spin and feeling more panic than I have in a very long time.

That aside, there were some highlights…

  1. Kamersvol with Jess. I used some of my birthday money to get a few skincare goods (Skoon and Skincreamery). We had brunch and champagne while we were there. Perfection!
  2. Sunday meet up with friends. We went to JC’s and had a good early supper, half price cocktails and a much needed chinwag
  3. Lunch thanks to the boss. It was his birthday in June, so he treated us to burgers. So good!
  4. Father’s day breakfast was delicious 🙂
  5. A good friend’s birthday party. Exactly what I needed!

This month I have some major goals, mostly all finance related. NEED. to. SAVE. But also, I have a few appointments I need to schedule/save for and they’re the sort that dent the wallet 😦

I also didn’t publish a want-list last month. I got a lot of amazing things for my birthday, so I’ve been focusing on finishing up old stuff and using new stuff. I also feel like want-lists make me want to spend more money… Which I’m trying to avoid. BUT I think I will be buying a few things this month anyway.

Onto the empties!

Dove Purely Pampering Shower Cream with Shea Butter and Vanilla (500ml)
Love this stuff. I needed something to fill the gap so I got this. It was on special at Clicks or Dischem. It’s always my fall back.

Skoon Hot Cloth Cleanser Nkuto Butter (10ml sample pot)
A while ago I bought a bunch of trial size stuff from Skoon and I’ve been making my way through it all. I swear, I haven’t tried anything I don’t like from this brand yet! So, this is a hard/solid butter, which you scoop out. I warm it in my hands and then rub it over my dry face to remove makeup/or remnants of makeup. I then use a warm washcloth to remove the butter. Left my skin feeling soft and clean. Love!

Guerlain Lingerie de Peau Liquid Foundation – 02 beige clair (sample sachet)
The shade was too dark for me, but I still wore it to work, just blended down my neck so it didn’t look off. I’m definitely going to be the 01. I loved how this applied. It has a very liquid consistency that just melts into the skin. It really is no work at all. I did get a bit oily throughout the day, though, so not formulated for oily skinned girls but I may actually seriously consider it as a winter foundation because it is so nice.

Neutrogena Extra Gentle Cleanser
I bought 3 of these, so I’m on my second one as I type this. There was a 3 for 2 going on at Dischem and since I can’t find my usual Body Shop Cool and Creamy Wash ANYWHERE, I had to go for this (my second favourite morning cleanser). It’s simple, moisturising (but not too moisturising) and perfect for no makeup days. It gets the job done without freaking out my sensitive skin.

Woolworths Love Your Skin Extreme Moisture Hand and Nail Cream
Love the scent of this. Love how moisturising it felt – probably the glycerin. I didn’t repurchase as I have another hand cream floating around.

Agadir Argan Oil Moisture Mask with Keratin Protein – Sulfate free (Sample sachet)
I got this sample with my Olaplex No. 3 treatment. I reallllly loved this! It smelt amazing and oh my gosh, so thick! Seriously. This stuff is heavy duty and my hair loved it. I may consider this in future, to be honest!

Clarins Extra-Firming Day Cream (30ml deluxe sample)
My mom gave me a few of these – she gets them regularly when she buys her day/night cream (also Clarins, obv). I freaking love this stuff. I always end up using it around winter time, and my slightly (very slightly) less oily skin just loves it. I think they’re giving these away because the line has been discontinued? Someone, confirm this? I would buy this in full size but it’ll probably be in pot form (which I hate) and these deluxe samples come in squeezy tubes (yas!)

Kiehl’s High-potency Skin-firming Concentrate (Sample)
I really, really loved this. My skin felt so smooth and soft the next morning after applying this. Does anyone know how much this goes for? I did Facebook Kiehl’s but never got a reply. This is something I would consider saving up for. With the sachet, I got about 4 days use, and every single day was a good skin day. I do have another sample of this (YAY!) but I’m not using this right now.

Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Exfoliating Pads
You get 60 pads in this tub, and I think it’s like 2.8% glycolic acid. I must say, I didn’t see too much of a difference using these. Sadface! But I do want to spring for the Extreme version (which is like 5%) Maybe the reason I didn’t feel like this was doing anything is because I’m using the Nip + Fab Glycolic Fix Serum, which is pretty damn amazing.

Esse Microderm Exfoliator (full size, 50 ml pot)
This lasted forever. This felt so luxurious and creamy. When they say microderm, they really mean it. You can’t feel the exfoliation at all – perfect for sensitive skins. I really loved this, but I haven’t repurchased cos I have Ren’s Glycolic Exfoliator stuff to get through first.

As you can see, I’ve used a lot of skincare this month, mainly because I’ve really been focusing on my skin since turning 29 *sob* I’m hoping this coming month is just as good!

May empties

Oh May, you have treated me well! Mostly because it was my birthday month. I tried so very hard to be good and not buy anything. But then I went and bought 2 bras, got a Brazilian treatment done and bought some necessities. Sigh.

Some highlights for the month!

  1. Fancon and dinner in the North – This was a jam packed and seriously frustrating day. Fancon needs some serious work in my opinion but after finally getting in (that’s another story), I had a good time! Dinner in the North was also pretty damn good!
  2. Farewell – A friend has left us! Gone to the UK. I think the only good thing that came out of it was all the goodbye food babies and the fact that my mister has now decided we need to visit the UK. Before, he was very anti-UK (wut.)
  3. Birthday party at Jerry’s – Friends, burgers, cocktails. Need I say more? It was really nice to see everyone who could make it and just hang out even though it was a bit loud.
  4. Getting my hair did – My bank account is sad but my hair is so happy. I swear, a Brazilian does WONDERS for my super curly, frizzy hair. I am actually HAPPY with it after this treatment and don’t even bother straightening it, usually.
  5. Shopping day with the Jess – It was good 😀

Now, onto the goodies I finished:

Cettua Oil Control Facial Mask
I really like sheet masks. I mean, you look scary but it’s good if you just need some down time. I’m not sure this actually helped with oil control but it felt good on my skin and I have repurchased.

Mineraline Body Scrub – Vanilla
This was super scrubby and oily. For me, that’s a good combination. Unfortunately, it went bad after awhile. Thankfully I was almost finished with it when this happened so it wasn’t a great loss. It got really…viscous and stringy. Just thinking about it makes my stomach turn. But before that, really nice!

Loreal Super Liner So Couture
My favourite liquid eyeliner. It has a brush nib and is super duper accurate and pliable. This was my second repurchase so that should say something. I’ve now bought it for a third time because even though I really like the Stila liner I have, it’s just…not…the same.

Benefit Roller Lash Mascara
When Benefit relaunched here, this was the first thing I bought. I had been dying to try it. Maybe the hype was against it or maybe I just suck with mascara? Anyway, this was just OKAY. I’m glad I tried it but I probably won’t repurchase.

Nuxe Creme Fraiche de Beaute Light 24Hr Soothing and Moisturising Emulsion
What a name. Believe it or not, I bought this last year. Last year I got a Spree voucher for my birthday from my office peeps and they were having a cosmetic sale at the time (this was before Spree canned their beauty section). I needed a new moisturiser so I bought this and the Nuxe moisturising mask. This was okay. I went through stages of liking it and hating it. In the end I started using it as a night cream because it was just too moisturising for my skin during the day.

Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water (Pink bottle)
Love. I didn’t think I would. I’ve never tried a micellar water before. Okay, I lie. I got a Caudalie cleansing water in a gift pack I bought a few years ago, gave it a go and felt like it did nothing so I just assumed all micellar waters do nothing and people are just lying. Nope. This stuff is golden. Perfect for eyeliner mistakes as well. I actually thought the other day “I need to buy this stuff again… I don’t know what I’ll do without it.” Dramatic, I know. But really.

Starskin Balancing Bio-Cellulose Second Skin Face Mask
Got this in the post from a dear friend. Accompanying the mask was a letter telling me not to use it on the day of an event because it will make my skin go red. So, the Saturday before my birthday party, I put this on and sat back to watch some Pretty Little Liars (as you do.) Well, I didn’t feel any tingling – if anything, it felt soothing and hydrating so I figured maybe my skin just isn’t as sensitive as hers. Took it off after half an hour, rubbed everything in and went about my day. Well. 20 minutes into my day, my skin went hot and red. Like I was having some insane menopause flush. It disappeared after about an hour but wow, it was brutal. Anyway, despite that, I’d so use another one if they were sold here. My skin felt fantastic the next day.

The Body Shop Coconut Hand Cream (30ml)
This smelt like holiday. I used it at the office because the handsoap here dries me out. Basically, this stuff smells so strong, everyone will know when you’re moisturising. But it worked and wasn’t greasy, so A+

Sampar Pure Perfection Barely There Moisture Fluid
On the whole, I really liked this! At the moment I’m using some Clarins deluxe samples. Will I repurchase? Not sure yet!

Now I really need to keep my wallet under wraps!


Wednesday wants

I’m still mostly on a no-buy thing, which makes me want to buy all the things. And then I went ahead and put in a MAC order. Sigh. Okay, granted, the three things I ordered have been on my OMG NEED TO BUY list and I really didn’t expect them to hit SA so soon. I was thinking I still had a month. That aside, here are the things I’ve been thinking about this May…

  • Denim jacket (R720) – I found the almost perfect one at Truworths, BUT it’s like R700 and one teeny tiny size too small (they don’t stock the size up). So, for once, the jacket fits my arms (sing hallelujah!), and everything is perfect down to the wash BUT I can’t button it up. Well, I can if I suck everything in and stop breathing, but then it just fails a sad, sad death when it hits my boobs. The mister was like, well who actually does up their jackets anyway? Especially when you’re wearing a jersey underneath (which I can with this jacket – roomy enough for jerseys, just not my boobs and tum. Whoops). He has a point though, which is making me wonder if I should? But then it’s also like if I’m going to drop that amount of cash on something, it really should close. Right? Gah.
  • The Wet Brush (R129 – depends where you buy it) – I’ve had my eyes on one of these for the longest time. I like the Tangle Teezer but I don’t necessarily think it’s the best product out there. For one, although it’s ergonomic in shape, it lacks a damn handle!
  • Olaplex No. 3 (R399) – What is this, you might ask? It is a magic leave-in-for-as-long-as-you-can-and-then-wash-it-out-serum/treatment-thing. Basically, this is supposed to be the best thing since sliced bread. It helps heal your hair and is the last step in a three step treatment but can also be used as a standalone treatment product for those who haven’t undergone the full three step treatment. It’s about R400, but I figure it might be worth it. At the end of the month (the 27th in fact), I’m planning on getting a Brazilian treatment done (this will be the second one I’ve had) and thought this would be a great companion. This stuff comes in the tiniest bottle ever. Gah. It better be fucking magic. I’ll keep you posted – using it tonight.
  • TheBalm Balm Desert bronzer/blush (R320) – This has been on my wishlist ever since Retailbox started stocking TheBalm products. It was sold out for ages and is now back in stock. I definitely want this. It looks like the perfect blush/bronzer hybrid – which is kinda what I’m into at the moment. Got this in October 2016 as part of the Retailbox sale (plus I had some points to use up)
  • Davines LOVE Smoothing Shampoo & Conditioner (R265/R295) – More on the hair front. Can you tell I’m excited for the Brazilian? These are pricey (about R265 and R295 respectively) but worth it? I might just get one (the shampoo possibly?)
  • Foreo Luna Play (R700) – I’ve wanted the Foreo Luna Mini for ever and a day. When Zando first launched it like 2 years ago (or more) I was super keen until I saw the price tag. Yep. Now, I know it’s an investment but it’s A LOT of money to spend when you can’t actually go and physically touch and experience the thing. I’m a tactile person. I can’t help it. Also, would I enjoy using it? The Play is a nice way to “test” the product. It’s the size and shape of a macaroon, and is about R700. It has a limited time span (can’t be recharged unlike the core range) but you do get a few months out of it, just enough to figure out if it’s something you’d like to invest in. I think it’s a great idea, really. Also, if you still don’t want to spend the R2500+, you can just buy another Play 😛
  • Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream All-over Miracle Oil (R425) – Yes please. Since launching, I’ve been wanting to get my hands on this stuff but I just couldn’t (and still can’t) justify it. Why? Because I own too many body products. I still want this though. And since this list isn’t a SHOPPING list, why not add it.
  • Lush Tea Tree Water Toner (R95) – For dem oilz.

Finishing all the things this April

I did well this month! Now just to stick with it…

Eve Lom Eye Cream (1ml sample sachet)
I got this as a little extra in one of PrincessNoo’s blogsales. I saw it lying around and figured I should really use it up. It lasted about a week? Eye creams always go a long way for me. Anyway, this smelt quite earthy (not really my thing) but it was really nice and moisturising. I reckon this stuff is probably realllllly expensive. Pass.

Lush Salt Peppermint Bark Scrub
Oh my. Love this. Why are you limited edition?

Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation – 01 Warm ivory
I literally scraped out every bit I could with a tiny little brush. I went through stages of die-hard loving this, hating this, and just feeling indifferent about it. I think it probably all depended on my skin at the time. This lasted a year – I got it as a gift last year April! It’s probably the foundation I used most consistently during this time. I didn’t repurchase because I don’t think it was a perfect match…and I’m a floozy.

Woolworths Love Your Skin Extreme Moisture Shower Gel
Love the scent, love this line, but this didn’t lather up at all. I tried everything. It just felt like by the time I had washed both arms, there was nothing left and I had to squeeze out more. It was so frustrating. Seriously. I must have flown through this because of that. Won’t be getting this again…Sorry Woolworths.

Skoon Hot Cloth Cleanser Nkuto Butter (10ml sample pot)
I used this to get the last bits of makeup off my face. Leaves my skin feeling soft and nourished. Love.

Palmer’s Coconut Oil Formula Deep Conditioning Pack
Love this stuff. I use it every now and then as a deep treatment. If possible, I leave it on overnight, otherwise I just slop it on and watch a few episodes of something before washing my hair. Still have one or two lying around in a drawer, which I’ll be using soon!

Loreal Pure Riche Nourishing and Taming Shampoo for Very Dry, Rebellious Hair
This sulfate-free shampoo is freaking amazing. I love it. It made my hair smell awesome and feel so so soooo soft. Gosh. Anyway, I was in a major pinch and needed to get more, so I went into the nearest Clicks and they didn’t have it!? What?! So I went into Dischem but this wasn’t stocked, so I picked up the other brand I want to try – OGX. I must say, it isn’t as great. No. That’s not fair. It’s a discussion for another time, I suppose.

Loreal Ultra Riche Replenishing and Taming Conditioner for Very Dry, Rebellious Hair
Same as above. Heart eyes all the way.

Cettua Anti-redness Mask for Sensitive Skin
Liked this. Cute packaging. Have one or two others from the same brand.

Lush Salt Peppermint Bark Scrub
Oh look! Another one! Yes. I went and bought another one after I finished the first one. Now I have none left. I need more!

Woolworths Love Your Skin Extreme Moisture Dry Oil Spray
Repurchase! Love the scent of this. Because it has a spray nozzle thing, it’s so easy to use! I much prefer things I can spray than those I have to decant into my hand. Haven’t bought another one because I’m using a Body Shop oil at the moment. But this was my moisturiser of choice.

Johnson & Johnson’s Makeup Remover Wipes (the pink ones…forgot the real name for this)
I used these to take off my makeup before gym. If I didn’t rinse my face with water after using these, my eyes would STING like A MOFO when I got sweaty. Ugh. And these dried my skin out (I always made sure to wash my face again when I got home, and properly moisturise). I bought a bulk pack ages ago, and this was the last one. Since my gym membership is no more (bleh), I won’t be buying these again.

Lush Rough with the Smooth Scrub
I have a problem with scrubs, don’t I? I actually got this at Christmas, and finished it up (hoping it’d be just as amazing as Salt Peppermint Bark…it wasn’t). The scent wasn’t my favourite and I think unlike the other Lush scrub, this is sugar-based, so it got pretty sticky after a few uses. I felt like it never really dried out properly (even though I did everything to try!) Anyway, this won’t be a repurchase.

And that’s it!

Holes in my wardrobe

I’m not a capsule wardrobe sort of girl. In all honesty, I’d love to be but if I had to take a good look at what’s currently in my cupboard and remove all my overly worn/should be tossed due to holes, etc clothing, I’d probably be left with very little.

Then, if I had to assess what’s left and donate some, toss some and keep the rest, I’d probably have to pitch up at work naked at least once a week. Realistically, I don’t think many of us have the funds to replace everything at once, or replace them with the key expensive/quality pieces we’d really truly like.

That being said, I’ve got better at just buying things. There have been a few moments where I’ve hesitated buying something because do I really need it, then gone back to get it because its played on my mind and then realised no longer available. It’s a thin line, people!

Lately I’ve been thinking about some things I really do need to stock up on, so I thought I’d post a list as a reminder to myself. I like having a list somewhere – it keeps me on track!

  • Prescription sunglasses – I’m blind. I don’t wear contacts. I’ve been squinting in the sun way too long. Always buy out of season, right?
  • Raincoat – I’m not talking about those flimsy things you had when you were at school. More like something that is substantial, looks decent (like part of your outfit) and will keep you super dry. I’m thinking something from K-Way
  • Boots – I’ve been wearing a pair of Pick n Pay boots for the past 2 years. They have finally died. I’d really like to invest in a pair of leather boots. I do have two pairs of docs though – one pair knee high (zip needs replacing) and one ankle boot BUT the ankle boot (preferred style right now) is seriously hard on my feet. I haven’t been able to “walk them in” as the leather is so goddamned tough. I have tried everything under the sun to soften it but I just can’t. Anyone have any suggestions? I think I may just need to consider something softer.
  • Blazer – Believe it or not…I don’t own one of these. I like to think a black blazer can dress up any outfit. I want to maybe get one in ponte fabric…it’s a little more forgiving.
  • Trusty scarf – I need a black scarf. Something that will go with every outfit (or most of them). Silk, wool, whatever. I just need one. I wanted to wear one this morning but I didn’t have anything that would go with my outfit (blue and white striped breton thing, dark blue jeans, black boots)
  • Bras – More of them please. I recently just bought two Panache Sculptresse bras from Amazon (never again) and damn people, don’t underestimate a good bra. I want more. Stat. PS: why are large cup bras so expensive and like the mystical fucking unicorn? I guess I’ll be making friends with eBay or Storm in A-G Cup…
  • Leopard print flats – I want. They’re outrageous. I just want. There was so much drama around getting these but finally…finally…I got a pair of Dune Hero’s in leopard print on sale for R900 (22 August 2016!)
  • Pair of leather sandals – I have my eye on a pair from Jane Sews (I can’t choose between brick or black). I also want a pair of their loafers.
  • Wide brimmed floppy hat (black, felt?) – #palegingerproblemz

Other stuff I want but can wait:

  • Denim jacket – I have always wanted one of these. I’m keen to see if it would work with my style. I’m not entirely sure if this a MUST HAVE, but I’d like to try one on anyway, and decide from there.
  • Leather jacket – Same as above. Being bigger, things aren’t always available in your size and don’t always fit in the same way. Okay let me take that back… We all have a body shape that at some stage in our lives doesn’t really work with certain types or cuts of clothing. Maybe I’ll stumble upon one that will work. This is definitely an investment piece though, so I think I’d rather wait until my I’m in a space weight/shape-wise where I’m happy enough to commit to something long-term. This looks amaze. Seriously. And so does this
  • Cashmere jersey – there’s a stunning grey one at Poetry that I’d die to own BUT it’s like R1600 or something (HAAAAAA). Okay, I shouldn’t be laughing cos we all know cashmere is fucking expensive, but hey, this is a wishlist after all. Also, I can’t be trusted with cashmere. Seriously. If it doesn’t wash well, it’s doomed. Scrap that. No cashmere for me.
  • Black dress – I don’t own one. Not even one dress. Actually, fun fact: I don’t own anything longer than a pair of pants. No 3/4s, no shorts, no bathing costumes, no skirts and no dresses. The search for the perfect LBD is a goddamn struggle, people.


Follow on Bloglovin

"We have lingered in the chambers of the sea
By sea-girls wreathed with seaweed red and brown
Till human voices wake us, and we drown."

- T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock (1917)

sonneillon’s tweets

The Glam Green Girl

By Cassidy Taylor-Memmory

Lucky Pony

A Blog About Excellent Pretty Things

Rattle and Mum

Rattle and Mum

She Said

A blog about beautiful South African things

Lines of Escape

Travel Destinations, Outdoor Adventures & Hidden Gems

All Dolled Up

All about beauty

Beauty and The Boy | UK / Scottish Beauty Blog

Scottish Beauty Blog covering everything from skincare, hair and makeup to busting myths, finding dupes and breaking down trends

3 Kids, 2 Dogs and 1 Old House

Where parenting and life collide


A beauty and lifestyle blog from a small town, South African perspective

Kate Loves Makeup

a beauty & lifestyle blog

Shakespeare & Sparkle

Books, Beauty & Lifestyle Bits

Prettiful Blog

A South African Makeup and Beauty Blog


South African Beauty, Lifestyle & Fitness Blogger

Lipgloss Kisses

Writer, rambler, raconteur

I'll take it all

South African Fashion And Beauty Blog