Friday, 29 August 2014

Considering the 'Lob' and Getting the Chop? | Zahra

                                            [All photos from google]

     Even though my hair is ridiculously long (it's not that long)...

...I keep considering getting it cut off because it annoys me so much sometimes (people with long hair will probably agree with me- you practically want to shave it all off).
I don't know if I would suit getting a 'Lob' (it would help if my layers were still short enough to hang just below my shoulders so I could actually see what I look like, but unfortunately they don't.)
Even though I probably won't suit it, the 'Lob' does look really nice all the same (the photo of Lily Pebbles is something that I would be more likely to do with my hair as it's a bit longer) and maybe I might be able to pluck up the courage and part with my hair soon? (probably not.)
I really like how it gives you a lot more volume, rather than using 2023 different voluminising products at the top of your hair and did I mention how quick it would be to dry?

I you've had hair like mine and actually cut it off, leave a comment down below how it went and what your thoughts were on it... 

Thursday, 28 August 2014

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge | Zahra

I was tagged to do this challenge by two of my friends, so obviously I did do it....

Go watch it on my Instagram

But on a serious note, I think it's a good idea to READ UP on the disease so you can get an insight on what you're doing. Macmillan is also doing an ice bucket challenge but for the causes of cancer, so you can check that out HERE.

If you've done the challenge, I hope it went well and you didn't get any bruises or anything. If you haven't....well I tag you - tweet me a picture or a video @Zahra2708, you have 24 hours, good luck!

If you're in the UK and you'd like to donate...
Text ICED£*amount you want to donate* to 70070


Monday, 25 August 2014

The Best Bargain Face Scrub I've Ever Used? | Zahra

This could potentially be the best thing that could ever happen to my face!

It's The 'Osiris Apricot Face Scrub' which is another little bargain from the 99p store.
Story Time:
 My mum and I went in there because she needed to buy a mop (casual) and she asked me if I needed a new face scrub, which I actually did, so I picked this one up as it looked quite similar to the St. Ives apricot scrub (which I love ever so much) and I was feeling ever so adventurous to try out something thatI've never heard of. I've been using it for about 2 weeks and I actually really like it (although I warn you, it smells more like cherry bakewells than apricots....I'm not complaining)

As you can see, the consistency is quite creamy and the exfoliating bead things aren't overloaded in the tube; they're quite spread out. 
The scrub itself is very gentle, but it does its job, it controls the oils and blemishes on my face and makes it really clean (state the obvious Zahra!) I use this roughly every Monday, Thursday and Saturday- the other days I just use my normal cleanser (apart from Sunday-that's lather your face in a face mask day :))

All in all, I think this scrub was well worth the 99p it cost + look at how much you get!-that's going to last me a while.

Hope you've had a good bank holiday weekend.

What are your favourite face scrubs?

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Summer holiday favourites - 1/4 | Ayesha

Instead of doing month-by-month favourites posts, I'm going to do seasonal ones. I don't often try a new beauty product every month, and particularly for my skin and hair, I have some tried and tested products that work for me and I don't like to change them up too often. I find that some products work better for me in warmer weather than colder and vice versa, and other products are great all year round. 

So, to kick off this 4-part series, I'm going to tell you of my current summer beauty favourites. 

Annoyingly, I wanted to include John Frieda Frizz Ease serum in this picture too but it completely slipped my mind! It's something I use every time I wash my hair and everything. Oh well. 

1. I guess I'll start with the Frizz Ease then. My hair is naturally curly and since moving to London, my hair has not got used to the water here. It's slightly more hard which means I have to use a lot more conditioner to make my hair manageable and soft. Because the humidity in London is worse because of the pollution, my hair really suffers with frizz. A couple of pumps of this serum on wet and dry hair though, it's amazing stuff! 

[Clockwise from left]

2. L'oreal TXT volume spray.  Zahra got me into this actually. I had bought the Charles Worthington Volume spray (the one everyone talks about), but it really doesn't do anything for my hair. It makes it feel so cakey and unmanageable. This one is a lot finer and helps my hair stay put as well as giving it a bit of volume, my hair being quite thin!

3. Chanel Vitalumiere foundation. Ooh this is a new one for me and I have been loving it. I don't get on with foundation, it makes my skin look REALLY cakey and is worst when applied with a brush. The only time I have enjoyed having foundation on my skin was on my wedding day. This, however, is a liquid foundation and when applied with fingers just looks like second skin; really natural. With a primer it also stays put all day and I feel like my skin can breathe when wearing it. 

4. Urban Decay BB cream. I wear this on a day-to-day basis. I have tried a few BB creams but this one works really well for me. I don't believe that BB creams are anything more special than a tinted moisturiser, but with this one in particular I can apply it at 7am, no primer or powder to set it, and by 6pm when I arrive home I have very little shine on my face. I normally get an oily t-zone made worse in the heat but this was a saviour. Amazing stuff! 

5. NARS - Madly (blusher). I tried this in the spring pre-tan, and it looked nice but I feel this product works really well with a bit of a tan, so for me, would be a summer-only product. It makes my skin look really healthy. It doesn't look amazing in the pan, but it's one of those things you have to try for yourself to see its appeal. 

6. Nail polishes - Chanel "Rose Insolent" (pink), Barry M "Sugar Apple" (pastel mint), Barry M "Coconut" (off-white/beige) and Essie "Chubby Cheeks" (bright terracotta orange). All 4 of these are my go-to summer shades when my hands pick up way more of a tan than any other part of my body. 

I'm a walking skin-bow (like a rainbow...)

7. Chance by Chanel. I received a couple of perfume samples after I purchased the Chanel foundation mentioned previously. I LOVE this smell. Its floral but not too girly-girly. 

8. Glow by Topshop - "Gleam". Topshop makeup is a hidden gem in the make-up world. The products are surprisingly good quality. Check Zahra's posts for her lipstick reviews; some of them are comparable in colour and quality to MAC. Anyway, this Glow pot is a highlighter and this particular one is a golden shimmer one. However, when you apply it to skin, you don't experience the kind of glitter that makes you look like a Christmas tree - it's very subtle and gives a good amount of sheen and glow. I love this one. 

9. Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Volupte Shine lipstick in shade 16 (the gold packaging), Soap and Glory gloss stick in Fuschia Rustic (it looks neon orange, but is actually a lovely wearable pink), and MAC See Sheer lipstick (your lips but better). Not much more to say except they are my 3 go-to shades this summer.

So that's all, and expect the next installment of this series in November!

I'm B'Lush'ing | Zahra

I went to town the other day with my sister and one of our family friends and we decided to venture into lush. Now I haven't really tried much of the Lush skin care so I thought I'd pick up a few bits and bobs to try out...

From the left: 

I've found this to work really well, I had a spot on my cheek (nice) and I put this on just before I slept and when I woke up BAM, it was gone. You need the tiniest amount, so this bottle should last me quite a long time PLUS it has a year's expiry date rather than 2 weeks.

Can I just point out that lush face mask samples actually last a really long time? A lovely assistant recommended this to me. It's got lavender scents and bits of lettuce that act as an exfoliant (is that a word?)          I've found that after I use this, I can instantly see that my skin looks more radiant and glowy.

I've not tried this yet, but my sister asked for a sample of this and the assistant just gave us one each, so I'll be reviewing that soon.

Once again, something I haven't yet tried but I picked a couple of these up as they were so cheap (£1 each) but I liked the concept of them- you drop one into a bowl of steaming water, wait or it to dissolve then place your head over the bowl for about 10 minutes or so, then simply pat your face dry with a towel. Review to come soon

Can we just take a moment to appreciate this mask? Firstly the smell, then the look, then what it does.... This mask has worked its chocolate-y wonders on my face. Besides wanting to eat this, the reason why I like it, is because it makes my skin look radiant and super soft.

When I first tried this out, I instantly fell in love with it. This particular toner (there's 3) reduces redness and cools down the skin (especially now that it's summer.) It's good just as a pick me up too or even as a setting spray (although I think the with the other 2 you can use them to remove makeup, this one doesn't say anything about cleansing, so I've been using it as a makeup setting spray and it's worked quite well.) I think in the future I'll get the Tea Tree Water and see if that helps me with any of my breakouts.

I've not tried this yet but I will soon hopefully. I've read lots of reviews on this saying how amazing it is so I'm excited to try it out.

Have you tried any lush products that have you would write a letter to the manager if they ever discontinued it?

Monday, 11 August 2014

26 Facts About Me | Zahra

I too am going to do this, just so you lovely people can get... an 'insight' on my life...Plus I can't just have 25 facts, that's too difficult to narrow down

1. I love cats and guinea pigs (mostly cats- I would marry one if I could.)

                                                           Both images from google

2. My favourite foods are the 'Cadbury' popping candy chocolate, pizza and New York cheesecake (especially the one from Tesco.)

3. I have 3 favourite words: 'bubble', 'crackle' (the 'le' pronounce more as a 'w') and 'plethora'

4. I'm between 5ft4-6 (I haven't measured myself in a while)

5. I used to love reading books and still have shelves full of books, some of which I still have to read.

6. I used to be (and still kind of am) a massive Harry Potter fanatic and I read the books like 9 times in a row or something (crazy I know!)

7. I love drawing and designing things.

8. I once wrote a book about a man who lived in a desert with his family and his camel who gets sent off to find water (it was like 4 pages long) BUT I'm also working on a 'work in progress' project which, if I finish it, should end up pretty good.

9. My dream jobs would be to work in the fashion/makeup industry or to become a YouTuber (if it does somehow workout.)

10. At the moment, my favourite songs are: 'Lose Yourself' (Eminem), 'Pretty Hurts' and 'Flawless' (Beyonce), 'Thinkin Bout You' (Frank Ocean), 'All Of Me' (John Legend- not the radio version) and 'Stay With Me' (Sam Smith.)

11. Even though I don't celebrate Christmas, I still love it and get super excited for it 

12. I'm forever wishing I was born in 1990 but obviously there's nothing I can do about that.

13. I can be very shy at first, but don't be fooled, once you know me, I'm a right old weirdo (weird's good though, right?)

14. I really want to travel the world when I finish school and go to: Australia, Shanghai, Singapore, Bali, South Africa, Florence + Milan (Italy), Miami, New York, LA, Florida (I still haven't been to Disneyworld even though my parents quite literally promised they'd take me 10 years ago), Edinburgh and the Maldives (before it goes down under.)

13. If you can't already tell, I have a massive addiction (I like to call it an admiration) to Topshop lipsticks.

14. My hair's too long to manage but I still refuse to cut it (I haven't had a haircut it over a year!)

15. I'm listening to the 'Frozen' soundtrack whilst writing this.

16. I bruise really easily and always wake up with little bruises and cuts on my arms and legs.

17. I get quite moody when I'm too hot or too cold.

18. If I'm alone or with my friends, I think I'm the next Whitney Houston or Jay Z (I basically attempt to sing/rap and normally fail miserably.).

19. I prefer autumn/ winter opposed to spring/summer, purely because I can wrap up and I have an excuse to wear my super white and green fluffy Topshop coat! (It's so fluffy I'm gonna die!)

20. I'm addicted to cookies. 

21. I spend most of my free time sifting through the depths of YouTube.

22. When I was about 8/9 I really wanted to be in the Olympics even though I was (and still am) crap at sports (although I don't think I'm too bad at tennis.)

23.                                   I'm deeply attracted to this ^^^ bag.

24.  I'm slowly becoming more and more fussy when it comes to food (although, if it's put in front of me, I will most likely just eat it.)

25. I'm quite the speller- even if I haven't heard or seen the word, most of the time I'll know how to spell it.

26. I'm writing this at 11:30pm.

My sister's facts: 10 facts about me

Friday, 8 August 2014

Marriage: My point of view

I can honestly say that I am a happily married person, albeit only just approaching our second year anniversary. It took a while to meet this person, and I'm going to tell you my story and how I feel about marriage and how it can be approached.

When I was looking for Mr Right, number one it was a shock to some people who couldn't understand why I didn't date that person. It was never something my family allowed, therefore I didn't question it, but I did always wonder if things would have been different. After meeting family after family (some who I look back on and still want to punch in the face), I became more and more distressed, angry, despondent, and weary. I wasn't too fussy, I just wanted someone who was at least taller than me, someone who could make me laugh and someone intelligent. However, they had a LOT of problems with me being a certain weight, or they had huge problems only wanting someone from the same caste (who does that nowadays?!), to stay at home and do the cooking and cleaning, to bring up 11 children, to only wear certain clothes (yes, shocking), so that by the end of it I felt like I had run a marathon without the endorphins that go with it. Introductory marriages (I say introductory, because 'arranged' means the partners are chosen for you. I absolutely had a choice) often have a bad reputation because people think, "How do you know that you know them fully?" The answer is, you don't, and you don't even if you have dated someone for 10 years. I have heard stories equally as shocking when people date for so long, move in then break up. I'll come back to breaking up a bit later.

The truth is, you don't truly know someone until you actually live with them. It's harder in Islamic society, and many other societies too, for it to be socially acceptable to live with the opposite sex before marrying them. This means that for us going through the introductory marriage process, it is a gamble based on how you feel you would fit in to the other person's family and with the person themselves. You have to be quite strategic about what you want out of a relationship. This may sound unnatural and that meetings with this people are like interviews and highly robotic, which is how most of my meetings felt, but when I met my husband it didn't feel robotic. We were able to have a conversation where we found out a lot about the others' views just from talking, without having to ask our top priority questions. Top of my list was equality; and I mean this in terms of men's and women's worth being the same. I didn't want to be branded as a 'housewife' and that it would be my 'duty' to do housework and cook, rather both of us should be responsible for that stuff seeing as we would both be working and both have to eat to stay alive and clean up to stay hygienic. 'Duties' didn't come under it and I was so happy that he agreed. To this day, if I don't feel up to cooking he will actually go in the kitchen and cook. If he was sitting on his laptop working, I will get up and vacuum the flat. 

I digress slightly. When you meet the right person, it won't feel unnatural, whether you dated them, whether you met them through a family friend in your house. The point I am trying to make relates a huge amount to Disney and cinema, actually. In these films, there is always an ideal of 'perfection'. What is perfection? My friend Naz and I were talking the other day and she said some true words, along the lines of "in your life, are you 100% happy with everything? Even if you get some new shoes, or start a new job, you're really excited to begin with then the novelty wears off. Does that mean you start hating the shoes or quit your job?" I know marriage isn't the same as a new pair of shoes, but the thought process is the same. The divorce rate is so high but I feel this is because people don't give the other person a chance. I have heard of a lot of people giving up on their marriages for really silly, petty reasons. Something like adultery is warranted; arguing about toilet seats and other little things is not. The relationships you see in movies are completely unlike real life. Is the man expected to bring home flowers to make his wife happy? Not at all. They are a lovely gesture, but actually spending time and giving emotional support is much more important. Is a surprise trip to Paris on a long weekend necessary to make a relationship work? Only if you can afford it, and a lot of people can't. The key is to COMMUNICATE. Just because you don't have the Hollywood 'perfect relationship', doesn't mean your marriage is in pieces or that you should want to divorce/break up; if the other person is worth staying for, by remembering their positive attributes, then there are always solutions. 

This is for anyone out there who is going through what I went through. I think my main points are that, no matter how you meet somebody, the outcome of that meeting is the most important. How you decide to live your lives together are more important. Remembering that life is not a Disney film is also super important (I still love Disney though. But don't believe in the fairy tale!). You can create your own fairy tale by appreciating who you have right now, and who you might meet tomorrow and appreciating them for who they are. Women may be skinny now but after kids, we could get fat. Men may have a 6 pack now, but in 20 years, be balding and have a beer belly. Looks change but characters don't. Life goes on, people evolve, and marriages and relationships should stick together as best they possibly can.


Someone who vows to stick out her marriage 'til the end of time...and hopefully after that too :) 

10 facts about me | Ayesha

Bit of a different postie this time. I used to do these all the time pre-Facebook, back when MySpace was the thing. Hopefully it will help you get to know me a little better! These are in no particular order:

1. I have a husband, he is very lovely. In so many ways he is literally the man I had dreamed of while growing up.

2. I love fantasy stories - Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, can't actually think of any more titles! I love HP so much, when I was at school I used to pretend I was at Hogwarts just to get through the day. Chemistry was potions. Nothing made me feel better about doing PE though.

3. I am a primary school teacher and often feed in my favourite films/books as inspiration for literacy teaching. I enjoy having free reign over the curriculum!

4. I love experimenting with food - cooking it, eating it, but strangely not shopping for it.

5. Going shopping for makeup lifts me out of a bad mood any day, any time.

6. I know this may not be forever, but the dreams I had when I was 14 of living in London have finally come true.

7. I have wanted to become an author since I was 6. I've written so many stories but thrown them away thinking they were rubbish. Currently I am working on a secret project. Let's hope it materialises soon!

8. I am a bit of a geek. I love watching documentaries about nature, the planet, understanding the human body and in particular the human mind. I studied psychology at university and it was highly interesting, and definitely shaped the way I think now!

9. I'm rather good at spelling words, even ones I hadn't heard before. I kind of 'see' the word in my brain and somehow it knows how to spell it!

10. I'm easily pleased and easily amused.

Enjoy whatever you're doing!

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Our homage to The Great British Bake Off | Ayesha

I had the best day today. One of my long time friends from University came over and after catching up we put on our aprons and made pakoras and meringues (as you do!) 

These are only a few snaps of the day but it was so much fun.

Credit goes to my lovely friend for the pakora recipe. 
Pakoras (onion bhajis)

3 onions
1 large potato
1 green chilli
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
3 tsp turmeric powder (make it go really yellow)
Salt to taste
Handful of fresh coriander
1 tsp of whole cumin
Handful of spinach (we didn't have any to hand but it adds a lovely flavour)
About 2 tbsp each of gram flour and plain flour
Water - about 100ml or less.


- Thinly slice the onions and shred the potato using a grater.
- Thinly slice the green chilli.
- Add your spices, coriander and spinach.
- There are no real measurements with the gram flour and plain flour; throw as much as necessary in until the mixture resembles that of a typical cake batter, only just covering the solid ingredients. The amount I stated above was just an estimate of how much we used - it really is trial and error.
- Warm up a pot of oil to deep fry.
- Serve when the pakoras are a deep golden brown on both sides.

For the meringues, we started off by following a recipe from BBC Good Food but the oven temperature requirements were no good - 110 degrees celcius for 1.5hours? We found another on the Nigella Lawson website which said to turn the heat up for 140 degrees for 30-40 minutes which worked much better. The meringue nests were crunchy on the outside but slightly gooey on the inside, so delicious. For the first time ever making meringues, we did a pretty good job (if we say so ourselves!)

Once the meringues cooled, we whipped up some double cream, crushed the nests into bits and added some chopped strawberries. Bit of strawberry sauce, mixed it up together and we had our very own Eton Mess. Delish!!!

I would have taken pictures of the finished products but we were so intent on eating them, and everything finished so quickly, that I didn't get a chance. Oh well! The proof was in the pudding!

Adding to the Collection: Topshop 'Chuck' | Zahra

Me+shopping=Topshop lippies

Here's the story: I went to the Bullring in Birmingham yesterday with my sister for her birthday, we walked into Topshop, I spent half an hour thinking about whether or not I wanted a cream leather jacket (£30 in the sale! Mind you, it did look really nice)...which in the end, I didn't get anyway. So we obviously had to go to the holy grail makeup counter there and pick up a lipstick (*cough cough* not that it took long AT ALL). I was planning to buy 'Mink' as I'm really loving Kylie Jenner's makeup and this lipstick seemed fairly similar to hers.

Can someone get me her hat please?

It's a browny/nude (very 90s) and looks amazing on her.
In actual fact, it turns out that the Topshop in the Bullring doesn't stock 'Mink' so I was a bit upset, but I noticed the sheer lipsticks and thought 'I've never tried those so I picked one up in the colour 'Chuck' which is a gorgeous dark,nudey/pink (your lips but better).
The formula of this is so creamy and long lasting- considering that it's a sheer lip colour, it's super pigmented- it's really moisturising and I like how it's glossy (even though I'm not the biggest fan of gloss). This could possibly be my new favourite everyday lip product (if it doesn't melt and snap off like my Revlon Lip Butter which I seemed to have misplaced after I took it out of the fridge when it broke...?)

Are there any other Topshop makeup products that you love and want me to try?

I've also been thinking about my first (proper) video idea and, I think it's going to be a haul after I've been to Oxford Street in a couple of weeks.
(considering I don't have a job, I really do need to stop shopping)

Friday, 1 August 2014

A healthy yet delicious and QUICK breakfast idea | Ayesha

Time for a foodie post! I love food. Enough said.

So, this is actually a drink my husband is keen on and this is actually his recipe. You will need the following ingredients:

2 tbsp of porridge
3 tbsp of milk
1 tsp of honey 
1 banana (not pictured - I'd already put it in the blender by this point)
Pinch of cinnamon to taste (I prefer without but he loves it, it's optional!)

Whizz it all up in a blender...

Serve, and enjoy! 

You can adjust how much porridge or milk you want depending on how thick you want to make it. The amount I made above serves 2 people (but I drank the lot...)

What's your favourite breakfast?
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...