Monday, November 9, 2009

All I want for Christmas...

Christmas is drawing near and its the beginning of the gift giving season. For some of us its a religious time, for others, a time for family or for some it just means presents! Which ever way you celebrate this season, you'll always want to give gifts that are guaranteed not to be re-gifted!

I have made a list of my top favorite gift ideas for all you girls out there to spread the gift of giving; also you might want to leave this page open for someone to stumble upon and get a little something for yourself. After all, it feels better to give something to someone and have them squealing in rapture, isn't it?

You cant go wrong with costume jewelry. For women of all ages, there will be a piece that will scream their name. You can make your own (see, "Drama Class") or pick up some amazing pieces from www.viaalley.com or www.strapya-world.com and you can find some pretty great deals on ebay and bidrivals.com too. Check out your local thrift store or flea market too, you never know what treasure you might uncover.


Rooster Brooch --- Pearl pig tail ring --- Rascal Raccoon necklace

Know someone who doesn't know what they want? Pick up a department store voucher. Trust me on this, you are better off getting them this than getting something they don't actually want. They will be happy that you're paying attention to their indecisiveness. If you want to give something more specific, get them a make up or clothing voucher from a luxe brand like Chanel or MAC. But remember; make up can be a pretty personal thing, so find out how much it'll cost for a couple of items and get a voucher to that value. Speak to the ladies (or boys) at the counters to see if you can pick up a little extra treat for yourself, as they usually have deals on where you can pay a little more and get a sample pack to die for.

Strapped for cash this season? Grab some paper and some pretty pens and old magazines and get cracking on some personalised Christmas cards. Hand write all of them and seal them in envelopes with a kiss. For extra points, bake some cupcakes or gingerbread men and make them look like your pals. Guaranteed no re-gifting!

Boys will be boys, and a lot of the time boys like nothing more than socks and jocks. Really. You might not think it but its true. Those creatures are always running low on the things! (Makes you wonder what they do in them..) This is a good gift for Dads, brothers and boyfriends when you don't have a lot of mula (or want to spend more on your gal pals, cause shopping for them is way more fun anyway!) You could also sneak into their room and take a quick look at their CD collection and see what they could use a bit more of, they'll totally dig that you know their taste. Just don't tell them how you know. For extra special boys who you don't mind spending a bit more on, you can get tickets to some great Summer music festivals, cologne or boy essentials (wallets, watches, belts, nice liqueur etc). They'll totally love you for it.

Everyone has one, a girlfriend obsessed with shoes. For those of you who do have one, you could make them a shoe care pack! Just pick up some waterproofer, a buff and a scuff fixing fluid and wrap it up. Its cheap and they're probably going to need it after all the Christmas sales and bargains. Same goes for bag ladies and jewelry crazy girls. Care packs rock.

Mother's can be pretty hard to shop for and sometimes they can get lost in the mad rush of the buying and you leave their gift to last minute. Pick Mum up a voucher for a spa treatment, or a mani/pedi/massage combo and put it in a hand made card. Bonus points for putting a picture of you and her in the old days on it. For Mum's on the 'go', grab her the ultimate age reducing creams. Try Clinique Youth Surge Night de-accelerating night moisturiser, Priori Coffeeberry brightening facial complex or Estee Lauder Time Zone line and Wrinkle reducing Creme. All revolutions in the age defying game.

Got young kids or toddlers to buy gifts for? Make them some toys! They might not get it, but if they're young enough they will love it. There are hundreds of "make it yourself" kits in fabric stores like Lincraft or Spotlight, or you could check out patterns on the net for something more original. For older kids, pick them up the hottest thing right now. kids aren't usually old enough to be quirky, so remember being their age and what you wanted. Remember to ask their parents first though before you buy them Baywatch Barbie, as they might not like their kids having those sorts of toys. Don't give kids money. That's what their parents work for.


Chester the vinyl bear, Via Alley.com $130

For tweens or younger teens, get them ipod music credit, CD's of their favorite bands, Magazine subscriptions (Dolly, Girlfriend, Chick) or cute accessories. You cant go wrong. You can also get some cool totes for them to carry their school stuff around in. Call it practice for when they get expensive bags when they're older.

Book bugs, writers, illustrators, scribblers, cooks, music lovers etc; books, notepads, sketch books + pens pens pens! The artistic types are easy to read and fun to shop for. Pick up old cook books by people you've never heard of, records of weird underground bands, buy drawings that awe you and frame them (IKEA frame $8 - $16), How-to guides, Ayn Rand or Charles Bukowski, poetry books, anatomy books, cool fabric, buttons, anything! The list is endless! Fill their odd shaped burlap stocking with joy!

Travel geeks can never have enough travel bags, cases, or tech-protectors. Check out the range at landsend.com, boygirlparty.com and Via Alley. You can never have enough tote bags, laptop cases and iphone protectors!
I leave it up to you now! Go forth and gift thy friends and family! No matter how annoying they are!

xo-xo

P.S Don't skimp on the mistletoe this Christmas!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Sun-days!

Summer Holidays are finally here! Time to start planning some holidays on tropical islands far away! I've picked out some of my favorite getaway's sure to keep your Summer fun!

I give you the best of the South Pacific!

We all love to get away from the crowds once and a while. Lie on a white sandy beach with the
3 essential 'b's - a book, a bikini and a boy. Preferably rubbing oil on our backs. A lot of the time it seems too expensive and people don't even bother. But the truth is, that with a little saving, you're definitely going to be able to have some fun in paradise.

Here are a couple of my favorites
courtesy Infinity Holidays and Explore Holidays.

Vanuatu!

Vanuatu is a magical place to the East of Tropical North Queensland. It is a great place for honeymooners and older travelers who are up for some adventure as most of the resorts don't cater for children under
15 years old. There is Volcano walks, hidden beaches just for you and tours of all types to help you get to know the islands better. With resorts for all budgets there is definitely something for everyone! Flights are about $855 and leave from Brisbane airport three times a week.

Hideaway Island Resort
"This relaxed Melanesian-style resort is set on a small coral atoll and is surrounded by amazing marine life. Home to the underwater post office" - Infinity Holidays

Looks beautiful from the photographs, and sounds great too! Upon further research I found out that you can hand feed 'tamed' fish all around the island! This place is great for fishing, snorkeling, scuba diving, and all other types of water sports. Its a small secluded island with guest age restrictions so you wont have to hear the screams of children while you relax (Just the sounds of newlyweds screaming at night if you opt for the cheaper Twin share rooms). Prices start from a low AU$41 a night with transfers to the airport or Port Vila harbor. The room types go from Twin share, to quad dorm share to an ocean bungalow. If you're the active type I think this is the resort for you. You can go in groups to extend your trip and make it cheaper at the same time.
http://www.hideaway.com.vu/


Breakas Beach Resort
"Nestled amid swaying palms fringing a 2km stretch of private beach, Breakas Beach Resort is an intimate tropical retreat designed exclusively for adults." - Explore Holidays

For those who like the more relaxed side of things, like massages, long walks on the beach and cocktails at a swim-up bar. Breakas Beach Resort is for you. With a prime view of the best surfing beach in Vanuatu. The rooms boast either views of the rain forest in the Garden view fares and un-spoiled views of the ocean in the Beachfront fares, with amazing open air bathrooms and a balcony with day beds. Perfect for lounging around reading and gazing at the breathtaking views. The resort is 5kms from Port Vila and Sectioned off from the rest of the world by a wall of trees, to make your stay a quiet, relaxing and peaceful one. From $133 its worth the little extra for the treatment you get.

http://www.breakas.com/


Iririki Island Resort
"Iririki Island Resort & Spa is a stunning property situated exclusively on a 28ha private island in the heart of Port Vila Harbor. Arrive from the airport and in less than 20 minutes you will be refreshed with a welcoming cocktail and the friendly faces that Vanuatu is renowned for. Iririki is the closest accommodation to the town centre." - Explore Holidays

Romantic Holiday for two? You've come to the right place! They even have a chapel if the mood strikes for a shot-gun wedding. With a day-spa, in room spa, movies, Internet and sports ranging from snorkeling to golf, there is something for everyone here. From $160 a night, you can enjoy the best of Vanuatu's luxe treatment. The resort also has a pool with swim-up bar, gym/fittness centre, tennis court and some kicking on island night life. If you're into the main islands night life, they have a 24hr a day ferry service into Port Vila Harbor, which takes only 3 minutes to reach its destination.

http://www.iririki.com/

Fiji!
Fiji is a place everybody has heard of, knows and loves. This tangible heaven-on-earth has resorts for all types and budgets. Flights are around Between $
500 - $850 depending on where you're flying from and leave almost daily. Fiji is great for families and younger newlyweds looking for a relaxing or adventurous getaway.

Bounty Island Resort - Mamancuna Islands
"48 Acres of wilderness, forest and gardens with Bures set on the beach front surrounded by clear pristine waters and a marine reserve providing great snorkeling" - Infinity Holidays

From a low $44 a night this is the best place for all you struggling uni students who need a change of pace. The property is student orientated with a games room, pool, restaurant and bar with daily activities and entertainment. For families, children under the age of 11 stay free. for $50 a day you can get breakfast, lunch and dinner. There is a dorm room available with a capacity of 86 people so you can bring all your friends.

www.fiji-bounty.com

Oarsman's Bay Lodge - Yasawa Islands
"Situated on a magnificent turquoise lagoon you'll be hard pressed to find a more idyllic location to while your time away." - Infinity Holidays

From $91 a night with breakfast lunch and dinner included, Oarsman's Bay Lodge is straight out of a picture book. With only the basic amenities, this Lodge will have you getting out and about. With a range of water sports to choose from you'll be hard pressed if you want to be bored. The Lodge has a bar and a Restaurant on its property and a choice of dorms or Bures.

http://www.oarsmansbay.com/

Mana Island Resort and Spa - Mamanuca Islands
"Against a tapestry of lush tropical gardens. Mana Island Resort and Spa is wreathed with natural white beaches and crystal clear rich coral waters. Only metres inland, the island is covered in rolling soft-grass hills and mountainsides offering robust hiking to those in search of Adventure." - Infinity Holidays

This decedent resort does indeed boast beautiful waters, beaches and just about everything is amazing. With two large freshwater swimming pools (above), a day spa and a kids' club, there is no way you'll run out of things to do, especially as there are activities which change daily! With Cultural shows and night-time entertainment, from $144 a night its a definite steal!

www.manafiji.com/

I hope you have some great adventures this Summer! I know I will!

xo-xo


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Time to relax

Summer is close and is well known for being a time for parties, music festivals, hot sweaty nights and hotter days and with all that's going on you'll need a way to relax and de-stress from the endless hussle and bussle that Summer seems to bring. Not to mention try and stay healthy through the maddness, beer and burgers.

Its time to ditch the camomile tea and hot baths, you need some cool relaxation, Short girl style!


Over the past 6 weeks I have trialed and tested six different relaxation treatments and techniques so as to give you some of the best ways to relax this coming Summer. My chosen methods were, an intense detoxing diet (RAW non vegan), Shakti mat, Pet therapy, meditation, Aromatherapy and cupping.


First up I tried out aromatherapy, now I don't know about you girls, but I thoroughly enjoy walking into stores like Dusk and Lush simply to be bombarded with amazing smells. And they do say that smell is the sense that triggers more happy memories than any other sense! I got myself a Ylang ylang scented oil and set up my oil burner, took a seat and let the smell embrace me. I was suddenly filled with warmth and feeling quite tingly. I breathed deeply, in through my nose and out through my mouth. I had some great relaxation music playing softly in the background which really made the experience luxe.
Get yourself a big soft pillow or just sit on the floor, as long as you're comfortable, a scented candle or oil burner, a well ventilated room in a quiet spot and some relaxing music (Try Enya/deep forest - sweet lullaby or the sounds of nature), sit for at least 20 minutes and breath deeply, focus on your breath and the scent of the oil and relax. Its easy, cheap and definitely worth it.


To step it up a notch, go for an aromatherapy massage (or make your partner massage your back) with scented massage oils. My favorite scents are Ylang ylang, coconut, lavender and rose.

My next technique was to try "Pet therapy". Sounded a bit 'iffy' to me and I couldn't find a website on it. But after having done it, I believe it brings you and your pet closer together and relaxes you both.


Penny and I relaxing together.

Sit or lie in a comfortable position with your pet either sitting on your lap or lying on your chest (sitting or lying next to you if its a large pet). Rub their head and ears to get them into a relaxed state. Then as they close their eyes, close yours and continue petting them gently. Breathe deeply and put out positive energies to your pet. If they begin to get restless, don't force them to stay, as it wont be a relaxing experience for either of you. You can also do this with babies or your partner. I used my puppies because I don't have a baby and my boyfriend wont sit still.

On the 4th week of my exploration into relaxation I received my Shakti mat. I think I died a little when I pulled it out of the packet, having only seen photos of it before then. Its a Small foam mat covered in sharp spikes! I was terrified. I think that's why when I tried it the first time I could only manage 10 minutes, but even that left me feeling like I had just had a huge 2 day detox. After a while, I managed more and more time on it, and the feeling after became more and more relaxing. I learnt that the trick is to clear your mind. Don't think about ANYTHING, lest you will feel the wrath of the spikes. I love my Shakti mat now. I use it once a day for 20 minutes and am feeling better for it. It even helped clear up my cupping bruises!

Get yourself a Shakti mat asap. $149 from www.shaktimat.com.au

The mat comes with a pamphlet that has a couple of exercises you can do on it to help improve metabolism and release tension and upon bringing it to my naturopath, she confirmed that it in fact does everything it claims to do. It even has a symbol to help free your mind while meditating on the back of it! Its called the Shee Yantra, and it makes meditation way easier.




My fourth trial was of pure meditation. And I found it utterly difficult to say the least. My mind would race, making lists and problem solving, I couldn't relax and it only lasted a few minutes. In the end I had to succumb to music and the Shee Yantra to help me break my over thinking problem. I just put the same relaxing track on repeat and sat, cross legged, eyes focussed and deep breathed. Finally, I knew what it was all about, and it only took me 5 weeks to figure it out too!

Cupping. Now where do I start?

This is cupping.
This is what it looks like after.

Okay, now you've seen it. Looks painful doesn't it? Its really not. I promise. The bruises are actually more like giant hickeys, and if done properly will be darker in problem areas that need further looking at/massaging. Check out your local naturopath or Chinese Medical practitioner or look here for places in Australia or for more information on the treatment. After a session of cupping (which I get once a month) your naturopath will walk you through some treatment of the poor circulation of Qi that you have. You will see an improvement in your cupping results after a few sessions and bruising time can be reduced with use of the Shakti mat or daily massage. Its also a great conversation starter when you're wearing backless tops.

During my trials I changed my diet to the RAW (non vegan) diet. Which basically is any food that hasn't been processed, like whole wheat, raw or undercooked veggies, or steak rather than sausages. Its a pretty easygoing diet, but it does a lot, removing any processed condiments will also leave you feeling more refreshed. Try balsamic vinegar and olive oil on your salad rather than store bought dressing, Cook your steak with soy sauce or crushed garlic instead of tomato sauce or barbecue. The possibilities are endless. Switch to rye bread and stay away from any white flour products, drink and eat fresh dairy, drink lots of water or home made juices and eat plenty of fresh fruit, fresh fish and yogurt.


You've seen the ads, we know that there is a huge buzz around at the moment about the cleansing powers of açaí berries. After some careful research, I have found that the easier to come by and cheaper (and as it turns out BETTER) version of these berries is the humble blueberry! Pick up a punnet or two today and snack on them for breakfast and lunch for some powerful cleansing. Besides, açaí "dealers" are usually scammers anyway. Check out this page for more details!


Happy Spring/Summer guys!

xo-xo

Monday, October 5, 2009

I am doing very well thank you

I Am Doing Very Well Thank You - Threadless T-shirts, Nude No More

Hey everyone! I have a job for you.
As my very first competition I have decided to help out a friend and promote his T-shirt design, so click the link above and vote! Leave a comment when you do and go in the running to win a Threadless T-shirt!

xo-xo

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Bassets De Race Allemande

This was a piece made by the ever loved Moreinterpretations as a present to moi. I love it soooo much! (check the comment for my initial reaction).

Thank you endlessly Forrest. You're an amazing friend. <3

xo-xo

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Friends


This post is dedicated to my friend moreinterpretations for staying up till 2am to make me my amazing new banner. There was 2 originally, but as I could only use one the tough decision was made and I chose the pink one. Aren't they great? Also for being an awesome writing buddy and making me smile with his emails and book recommendations. Lots of luff to you F! ;)

After a slew of 21st's with still more to come, you can really see friendships people have made come to light. At my friend Talisha's birthday, all her friends made speeches and by the end of it she was crying with happiness, only to top off the speeches with her younger sister saying a few words that had her bawling. It was really moving to see that people could have such a profound effect on each other. She looked really happy and the rest of the night was a blast.

This brought to mind the importance of friendships in your life. Friends with people from school, people you just met out or at social clubs and being friends with your family. Friendship makes life not only bearable but fun! There are all different kinds of friends. You don't have to be together 24/7 to be close, or you could be joined at the hip. You could fight all the time or never have fought a day in your life. Friends come in all shapes and sizes and they are all precious.

Have you told your friends how special they are today?

The truth is, probably not. In this day and age I myself am seeing a new form of commitmaphobia. Its called 'friendship commitmaphobia'. When friends make plans then cancel at the last minute, choose boys over a night with the girls or even forgetting to text back. These things plus many more are the signs that this person may not value your friendship. Along with ignoring you on facebook, ignoring your phone calls or ignoring you in public. Being the person on the other end is never fun. If you are in this situation all you can do is confront them about it and ask if they really want to be your friend and if they cant come up with an answer its probably 'no'. If you see that you're doing it and you don't mean to, take that person out and make sure they know you don't mean it. It can be very upsetting when someone you care about doesn't want to spend time with you, no matter who they are.

Next time a friend invites you out and you say yes, then you get all lazy an hour before you're meant to meet, scrape yourself up and make an effort. They've probably done their hair and make-up by now and are planning where to go! Or if you see a friend is calling you and you don't want to answer, do it anyway. It only takes a few minutes and you'll be making them feel better. Its really very little effort to do these things and they'll leave you both happier people.

Friendship is precious and does require maintenance! Don't let the 21st century ruin your chance at having real friends.

Love love!

xo-xo

Monday, September 14, 2009

Drama Class


When you look in the fashion magazines these days you see women with dark dramatic make-up, bright red lips Avant Garde hair and clothing that you know if you saw someone walking down the street your jaw would drop. The thing about these looks is that a lot of young woman are not confident enough to try these sorts of looks, deeming them way too much for your every day wear, dooming their most fabulous garments to the back of their closet and opting for a t-shirt, flip flops and jeans.

Recently in a blaze of credit cards, samples and birthday gifts I managed to score myself a whole bunch of new make-up and a couple of stunning pieces of clothing. And while digging through my unpacked luggage from Melbourne I discovered my high waisted shorts and some much needed faux tan along with a couple of other much missed items. I thought to myself, well, lets make this Summer the most fabulous yet, add some visual drama to every day and get some eyes poping!

Take a look through your favorite fashion mags and look at the things you wouldn't normally wear. There is no way you'd look good in that, right? I roll my eyes at you mademoiselle! You would not only look amazing, but because you also have amazing personalities that the girls in the magazines simply cannot show, you will be the
tres chic-est of the tres chic! Yes, this applies to you shy ladies too. Why not go Dolce and Gabbana style and wear bright red lipstick? It'll boost your confidence and you'll shine like a star. Become a boho beauty and rock a kaftan and some flats without the tights and add tones of bronze chunky jewelry! Maybe you are like me and envy the dark eyed, high high heeled, leggy, cinched waisted cat walk models. Sure I may not be a size -0, but its fine cause I have my confidence and an awesome range of waist belts. Don't worry if your budget doesn't allow Couture. Just stop by a couple of op shops and pick up some junk jewelry, belts, bags, etc. Pull it apart and remake it as your own! That way you'll have a totally original looking accessories for a millionth of the price! Here are some my own ideas:


Bejeweled leather bag
; totally loving the new jeweled bags coming out? Head to target for a soft faux leather bag for around $30 (or grab a good one from trift) then to a couple of good thrift stores and pick up a whole bunch of necklaces with cool beads. Then off to Lincraft or spotlight to grab some sequins, thread and a leather-working needle and start adding it all to the bag in awesome patterns! Extra points if you use lace, chains or rope.


Chanel style pearl necklace
; I love Chanel pearls. Chanel anything really. She is my hero. But I simply cannot afford the minimum of $2000 for a single stranded pearl necklace. So being very sneaky I found a way you can mimic without copying. Once again, raid one or several thrift shores for pearls. Re thread them onto a new cord with nice clips and get a flat bead you can tie (and glue) a black ribbon into a bow onto and tread it onto the side of where the necklace would sit. Extra points for white edges on the ribbon!


Eccentra-Chic Shoes
; these crazy shoes coming out have so much going on its hard to know where they start or come from. Bejewel a pair of your old heels with old brooches and sparkly jewels and beads for some super original foot-wear. You can also use old earrings with the posts cut off or clip ons. Extra points for matching brooches, or chains on slouchy boots!

Plated leather belts with rocking buckles
; once again its off to the thrift store in search for a belt. Grab a couple if you see some with interesting buckles or textures. You can take them to shoe repairer if you want to swap buckles around for pretty cheap. To make a Plated belt, you may need some help from your trusty local leather expert. Or you can search google for some tips and tricks.

You will need a belt that is at least
4 or more sizes too big for you.
Strong twine.

Leather working Needle. (And possibly a metal thimble)
Glue suitable for leather.


Cut the belt into
2 pieces starting about 3 inches from the buckle. Cut the long half into 3 strips for platting leaving about 6 inches at the end with the holes so you can do the belt up. Plat the leather either tightly or loosely depending on your preference and when you have done, secure the top of it with glue. When the glue has dried, hold the long half around your waist and match up where the buckle should sit to get the correct size and sew it on tight remembering to glue the remaining plait to the inside of the buckles strap. Leave to dry on a flat suffice with a weight on top so as it does not crinkle. There you go! A -insert your name here- original!
Extra points for adding large beads onto the plaits and buckle swapping!

Now you have the accessories. Next is the clothing. Opt out of trends and go for timeless. You'll never be left behind and updating your closet will be endlessly cheaper. Things you should have in your closet should include:


Day;

Blue jeans that FIT you.

Shorts/Pants that fit well.

Black, White and Gray T shirts.

Flowing girly tops.
A couple of mini skirts and longer (below the knee) skirts in flowing materials.

Jackets - one long and one short.

Plain black pumps or ballet flats and an interesting pair.

2
Pairs of sneakers.

Night (out);


Little black dress.

At least
2 or more cocktail dresses.
Some sparkle such as bracelets and necklaces.

Tights in nude and black.

Same shoes as above.


Accessories;


Leather belt.

Black leather belt.

Waist belts in at least
3 different types.
Silver charm necklace/ bracelet

Gold charm necklace/ bracelet

Stud earrings and dangly earrings

Bangles


Underwear;


T shirt bra in nude, black and white.
Black and nude strapless bra/ stick on bra

G strings, plain and lacy in black and white

Low rider/ brief knickers in black and white

In addition to the above feel free to have corsets or fluro leather undies.


So there we have the staples. Check your closet, chuck anything too big or too small and definitely things you
know you'll never wear. Hand them into the thrift store. Now you have clothing you love and that fits you and closet space for anything new. Fit is the most important factor. If you see an amazing top next time, check the fit. And to be sure it is definitely NOT an impulse buy, leave it, put it on hold for a day and if you're still thinking about it, then you know its meant to be. Don't be limited to the casual. Tops with ruffles and glitter and beads and embellishments are made to be worn. If you love it and you buy it, wear it! Wear the damn thing till it breaks! (Which shouldn't be for a while cause you should be following the care instructions!) If need be, hide all your plain tops so you have to wear the good ones. Wear them everywhere. From the mall to the grocery store. You never know who you'll bump into! By all means have track pants and home boots. But don't you dare wear them out of the house (or gym). I'm serious. Don't.

Dramatic make-up in normal situations scares the absolute crap out of people. And I don't mean people seeing you in it. I mean the people wearing it. They think, that people think all sorts of things when they see them in red lipstick and dark eye make-up. They hear "Ooh what a tramp" or "What the heck was she thinking" in their heads, when, in actual fact, they think "Wow, look at her! She looks amazing!"
So get those silly thoughts out of your heads girls and vamp up!

Seasonal colors are always fun to play with, but limited edition stuff (and I don't know about you girls) annoys me. To think I'll never get to lay my hands on its glory again? I simply cannot. If you're going to spend good money on make up make sure you can get it again. Trendy stuff is fine too, but when the trend is over, you're left with 'pond scum' green toe nails and 'I just got punched in the eye' blue eye shadow. Not sexy.

Check out Jean Paul Gaultier's music video from the 80's - "How to do that". You could get away with pretty much all the make up they're wearing in it. Proving that true style never goes out of fashion.




Here are a couple of my personal tricks to maximise the drama of your look and wow unsuspecting onlookers.

I have pretty thin lips. I call them my little bird lips. I don't mind them so much but sometimes I wish I could have bigger ones. So to give the impression of fuller lips I trace below the fold on my bottom lip with lip liner and just above the top of the line of my top lip. I then fill it in with liquid lipstick and add super shiny gloss. Voila! Collagen without collagen! Red is my favorite to play with, as it is the strongest color you can wear and will always look fabulous.

Learn to love liquid eyeliner. You can create some dramatic patterns such as zig zags and swirls or even hearts around your eyes. Kohl is a good tool to cover larger areas and create smokey eyed looks. If you want to learn how to achieve these looks, practice with liquid eyeliner on your inner wrist. The back of your hand is hard to work on because the skin texture is so different from your eyelids. Don't forget that your best resource is in make-up departments and specialised stores as they usually hire trained make-up artists who would be happy to show you some of their moves (If you ask nicely, that is).

To achieve a healthy glow you must first establish whether you should wear bronzer or blush. It usually depends on your skin tone and what foundation you wear along with other factors such as eye and hair color. For either, you will need a large blush brush to apply it with, don't skimp otherwise you'll end up with a rough one that might add too much color and make you look a tad nuts. Large soft brushes cost from $40 onwards and you wont need to replace them for years to come.

Add color to your eyes, but be careful. Practise at home with different color combos with lipsticks and accessories to achieve different looks.

I hope to hear some of your tips and tricks to make your looks more striking!

Au revoir!

xo-xo

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Wake up, beautiful.


A lot of people tell me that I have beautiful skin. And I wont lie, I believe I do too. And people always put it down to genetics and never ask what the real secret is. It has a bit to do with genetics but that's not all. Both my younger brother and sister suffer from those pesky little red spots and wonder why I don't! Well, in this entry I'll be telling you all about my beauty secrets that have me waking up clean skinned and movie beautiful.

Getting a good amount of sleep is one of the most important things you can do to achieve glowing beauty. Women need more sleep than men so off to bed early ladies! This also depends on your schedule; I write at nights and sleep during the day. You don't need to quit your fabulous bar job to catch the necessary Z's, just plan out what you need to do so that you get the right amount of unbroken sleep. If you are getting at least 8 hours and are still feeling tired, you may have an iron deficiency and should see a pharmacist or doctor about getting some supplements.

You need to make sure you have a balanced diet. Getting your 8 hours means nothing if you scoff deep fried anything and fizzy pop
and some seemingly healthy foods can cause toxins to build up in your body making your skin suffer. Drink at least a litre of water a day, stay away from gluten, refined sugars and refined wheat products. You don't have to cut cake and sweets out of your diet for good (I know I don't), but the less of these you eat, the more your body will thank you. There is nothing wrong with eating meat either. But McDonalds is NOT meat. A grilled piece of red meat the size of a deck of cards per week will keep your energy levels up and keep your digestion strong. If you do prefer to go vegetarian; eat lots of legumes and other food that make up for not eating meat. And its best to take iron to make sure you get the right amount.

Follow a skin care regime.
Find out your skin type and use products specified for it. You don't need to cleanse, tone, moisturise, night treatment, etc etc every day. Just pick up one good moisturiser without an SPF to wear 24/7 and wash your skin with a soap for sensitive skin. You can make up for the lack of SPF during the day with a small dab of sunscreen. This will also save you some extra money so you can buy good make-up that wont clog your pores and make your skin oily. My skincare regime is a bit more than one moisturiser, but mostly comprises of free samples I get from visiting the ladies at the make-up counters at department stores.

Wear GOOD foundation/power. $12 at the local supermarket might seem good to your wallet, but spending $85 on a truly good product will save you money on trying to fix your pimple problem caused by those awful products. This is from
personal experience. I used to wear something that came in 3 shades, was on sale for $9 at the supermarket and dried all my skin out making me look tired. Now, I have a beautiful Estee Lauder pressed powder that matches my skin perfectly and hasn't caused me one iota of grief. Your skin needs to breathe and you should let it. Not to mention, these products last much much longer anyway.

Use oil for make-up remover. Olive or Jojoba oil is the best. Just rub it into your eyes and skin
with a soft make-up sponge and wash it all off with a gentle soap. Its cheap, lasts ages and makes your skin glow.

Exfoliate at least once a week. You can find recipes for good exfoliantes online or pick one up from anywhere pretty cheap. I love anything from St Ives, Mecca or the Body Shop.

Eye make-up doesn't have to cost you a bundle. Just pick up a nice mascara (non waterproof) and soft eye liner and wash them off properly before bed. If you're going to put anything on your lips, make sure when you wipe it off that you have a super moisturising lip balm to put on them after. Wiping off of those "Super Stay" lipsticks with tissues can scratch and dry out your lips making them all flaky and split. FYI Licking them doesn't help them, if anything it makes them worse.

Try not to pop spots. As necessary as you think it is, its not. If you do feel the need to do so, do it with clean hands and nails and remember to wash your skin thoroughly after; this will stop the spread of bacteria but not scars. Be gentle!

Sweet dreams!

xo-xo

Thursday, August 13, 2009

How to take care of yourself - relationships


Its an arguable fact that when not in a relationship, women tend to take better care of themselves. This - in my case at least - seems to be true. When the bf is hungry, we both must eat. And while a girl has got to eat; there is a huge difference in our diets and I, in turn, put on weight. This causes me to have skin issues and get quite down about myself and in the end I just give up and let myself go.

Its not as though I figure, 'well, I've got him now so whats the point?' Its more along the lines of whatever makes him happy. And what makes him happy is nights in watching movies, pizza and drinking with the boys.

When I am single, I do my hair, get manicures, get facials, inspect my pores, exercise, experiment with make-up, by fabulous cloths and hang out with other girls. When I am in a relationship, all the time I have for those things seems to disappear and some days I can just manage to do my hair and make-up before rushing out the door to read books while he plays sport. Of course I enjoy this to an extent. But I would rather spend that time doing research or hunting out cafes.

Recently I have come up with a battle plan that allows me to do both, because lets face it, if I focus more on my own happiness, it actually makes him happier than when I self sacrifice and torture myself into doing things that make me feel awful. It took me years and years to figure this out. But when I'm in a good mood, looking amazing and being productive I am a much better girlfriend.

Set aside time for you to spend alone. Absence makes the heart grow fonder! Run your errands, pretty yourself up, prance in the nuddy about your house and have tea parties with your girlfriends. Do things that make yourself a happy and healthy lady. Put him first by putting yourself first and everyone wins.

Spend your time together doing 'couple' things. Such as going on dates to cuddling to breakfast before work and walking the dogs. Turn your phones off and focus on each other. Treat him as though you just started dating; with intrigue and wonder. Try to find out new things about each other and do things that will make him happy. He will follow suit and try to make you just as happy.

Keep your word. That goes for him as well. A gentleman always keeps his word. As does a lady.

Don't let him interrupt your 'me' time. Unless he is going to die or be shipped off in the next 24 hours, it can wait. Same goes for you missy. He needs to spend time being silly with his friends and watching sports so he doesn't have to make you do it with him. Besides, wouldn't you rather watch Sex and the City and paint your nails than deal with a bunch of silly boys? Hands up! I thought so..

Eat healthy. Don't let his bad diet affect yours and turn you into Miss Piggy. A good catch will love you no matter what size you are. But you need to do what makes you happy. If you like scoffing hot dogs and guzzling soda with him, by all means, go ahead! But don't come crying when you start to look squishy. You may be in a relationship, but you are your own woman. And you can control yourself.

Speak your mind. Stuff guys liking quiet girls with no opinion. Tell them why you're annoyed. How else will he know you hate it when he flicks bits of napkin down your top? You don't need to scream. Just quietly and politely ask him to stop. He will if you're serious enough.

Sleep in your own bed, more than you sleep in his. Unless you live together that is. You need to be able to have your own space and wake up in your own time some mornings.

Have your own separate friends. Not that you cant be friends with his friends and visa versa, but you need to be able to get away and gossip. Being friends with his friends can sometimes cause dramas too with the more protective boyfriends, or with boys who have friends that like causing trouble.

Now you know a couple things that'll help you love yourself and him more and keep you feeling great about being in a relationship for more than just the 'being in love' part.

Live like you'll die tomorrow,
love like you've never been hurt.

xo-xo

Monday, July 27, 2009

How to get what you want


There are a lot of people in the world who complain about what they don't have. They always 'want-want-want' but they apparently never get. Something all these people have in common is the fact that they sit around complaining about what they don't have. They never actually make the proper effort to get it! I have news for those people. You don't get anything for doing nothing.

Whether what you want is to lose
10 kilos or date that dream boat in accounting, there is always a way to get what you want. With hard work and determination! Now a lot of you are probably thinking you want to stop reading this right now.. Saying in your head "Yeah yeah, I've heard this before!", well if that's the case and you're still not getting what you want you're probably not trying hard enough.

Here are a few key things you need to know before you can get ahead.

Learn to admit when you're wrong.

There is nothing wrong with being wrong. Unless you cannot admit it. Nobody likes a sore loser. Just suck it up, apologise and admit it and you'll find people respect you far, far more. And being respected is way better than being stubborn.

That also goes for taking the blame. If you've done something at work, home or out, don't lie or blame someone else. Just say this key sentence "I'm really sorry, it wont happen again", and then try your damnedest to make sure it doesn't. Just take the blame and deal with the consequences and try to fix it. Its not as scary as you think.

Stand up for when you're right.

But don't rub it in people's faces. A lot of people HATE being told they're wrong and even when they know you're right, they will stick to their story. Just shrug them off, they're not smart enough to waste your breath on anyway.

Express your opinion fluently and passionately.

But don't be preachy. There is a good balance for everything, and when you strike the right one, you will know. Debating is fun. Arguing is not. There is no need to get in a fist fight over something trivial.

"Lead, follow or get out of the way."

Yeah, alright I stole that line from a movie. But they do say its the best form of flattery! But the line has a lot of truth to it. If you find yourself in a situation where someone needs to take charge, don't be afraid to! If you feel you're up to the task then exercise that authority and show them what you've got. If you don't feel up to that role, there is absolutely no shame in following. Someone might know more than you and would be better suited for the job. Getting out of the way, though it is an option, isn't a well respected one. Nobody will listen to you in the future if you just get out of sticky situations all the time.

Have courage!

Plato once said, "courage is knowing what not to fear". Things to fear go along the lines of; Sharks, explosions, falling off cliffs, etc. Mostly things that could maim or kill you really.. Don't be afraid to invite that cute guy out for a drink, or ask your boss for a promotion. The worst that could happen is you get turned down! And how long will that hurt for? The answer to that is 'it wont hurt'. You might just be disappointed for a couple days.

And remember.. There ARE other men/jobs/apartments/outfits. There is a whole world of other things out there! So when it comes down to it, you have nothing to lose. Only new opportunities to gain.

Real winners are the ones that try, even though there is a chance they wont make it.

Make sure you know your priorities.

Yes. We know you want that new job. We know what you gotta do to get it. But try to take it into account the rest of your life. There is no point neglecting your dog, family, boyfriend or most importantly, yourself, to get what you want. Weigh up the pros and cons and do what you can without killing yourself over it.

If you do rack your brains and start banging your head against walls trying to get what you want, think about what its going to do to your work. To get what you want you need to be competent. Scribblings on scrap paper at 2am, do not make the cut unless you're a writer or designer and that's how you do it.


Now for the hard stuff!

Okay, so we've got your basic rules down. You have the ammo to get what you want, now you just need the right idea on how to approach the situations life throws at you.

Asking out a boy might be daunting, but you cant let him see that. You gotta be cool, confident and collected. Walk up like its nothing! Just smile and say, 'wanna catch up after work some time for a drink?'. Easy as that! If he says something like 'Oh, sorry I have a girlfriend', or something like that, just turn it into a group thing! Something like 'I was just asking around the office if anyone wanted to catch up for work drinks and wanted to know if you would like to come!', if he doesn't work with you, just say 'sorry' and blush shyly, he'll be quite flattered that you went up to him either way.

If the boy you want to ask is a bit closer to home, like a friend for instance, just flirt a little more than usual and see if they pick up on the hints. Dress in ultra cute outfits, try hang out with just him more often, giggle. You don't need to come straight out and say it straight away, if he's into you, he should pick up the hints! (unless he's a bone head, then just get tipsy together and kiss him unexpectedly)

For a promotion, approach your boss when there isn't an ultra crazy deadline keeping everyone in a frenzy. Try get him or her when its been a relaxing day, during work hours. No one wants to talk shop after work. Make sure you plan out what you want to say, and keep it brief. Don't drag on with 'uhmmm's and 'errr's. State what you want and why you think you deserve it and thank them for their time. Write down a speech at home and practice with your housemate or cat to get it polished and perfect.

If you're asking your partner to move in with you or visa-versa, just ask them straight out. Don't beat around the bush, and try to word it so if they won't feel bad if they say 'no'. Ask them when they're not stressed out from work or anything. They'll be more appreciating if you wait for when they're relaxed. Remember, men cant process as much info as women. Make sure they have time to think about it over properly and come to a reasonable solution.

Asking landlords if you can get a pet. Myself, and one of my close friends have both dealt with this and it will all depend on your landlord and the pet you're getting. Remember to be reasonable. A Golden retriever might not be the best idea for your one bedroom apartment in the middle of the city. Make sure you decide on a suitable pet and research its habits and traits before you ask your agent. Will it need a lot of room? Is it a yappy dog? A shedding cat? Will you buy a puppy or a fully grown animal? Don't look for one until you get clearance either, cause you might not get permission. Make sure you are able to speak to your agent properly and tell them about the animal you want. They may be fine with a cat, -most strata owned flats are- but not with a dog. You might be able to sway their opinion if you voice your proposition passionately and show responsibility. Explain what measures you are willing to take to prevent the house being affected by the new occupant.

If you want to lose weight. There is a simple answer to this. Just do it. No excuses, nothing, if you need help, get it! There are plenty of nutritionists, dietitians, gyms, doctors and naturopaths that can get you on the right track. If you're strapped for cash, research diets on the Internet, making sure you don't get onto a 'fad-diet'. Eat healthy, drink plenty of water and exercise. Do a detox programme and stick do it. You DO have the will power. Remember that.

Start your new dream hobby. Gather the materials you need, make some time and do it! That's all there is to it. If you don't know how to do it, look up classes or how-to's and learn!

Moving out of home. Living with your parents is relatively easy compared to living on your own or in a share house. Before you announce your departure, write out a budget, it'll need to include rent, bills, food allowance, entertainment and a some extra to put away for emergencies. Do you make enough? Will you need a new job before you think about moving out? You need to take all this into account before you do anything. Then you need to think about what kind of living situation will suit you the best. Is a share house your thing? A single housemate? Or living alone more your style. You'll also need to put away money for furniture and bond.

If you want to travel, first thing you need is money and an estimation on your costs for the trip. For that, go to an agent and sit down with them and work it out. Then calculate spending money in accordance with the exchange rates and then you need to save. Speak to your employer and see when is best for you to get time off work, then work out how long you will stay. Think about your accommodation, communication to back home and how you'll travel when you get there. Make sure that you have a separate account with money for emergencies, work out travel insurance and learn some basics if the language there isn't English. ('Help', 'yes' and 'no', 'please' and 'do you speak English?' are good.)

To get rich and famous. Now this one is a tricky one.. Because if I knew the secret, you'd definitely be seeing me on the cover of Vogue! But as you are not, it means I don't know. The only advise I can give you on this, is do what you love and are good at, and do it with all your heart. That way you cant go wrong. Some day, your hard work and effort will be paid off.

Now that I have given you some hints on how to get what you want, all you need to do is go out there and do your best!

Good luck ladies!

xo-xo

Monday, July 20, 2009

Sleepover special!

Now you know its not really like me to post photos and what not, but I was loving my jammies this morning and how my hair looked and thought it would be fun to have a girly sleep over special!


First up, you'll need awesome jammies. I love ANYTHING PeterAlexander -- you could call me obsessed.. -- next, some form of delicious treat, anything that'll dance on your lips and rest on your hips (you'll be dancing it off all night anyway), then you gotta grab two or three bottles of wine, a couple of your closest gal pals, and get the beats cranking and let the make-overs begin!



Set a theme for your sleepover! Maybe its your birthday? Pretty in Pink more your thing? Or Diamonds are a girls best friend, maybe? Why not a guerrilla midnight picnic?! Anything is possible! For the snacks of the night. stick to light, yummy sweets and savories. Finger food if you will! You could gather the ingredients before the party and get the girls to help out in making the delicious snacks for extra activities and amazing smells!



For the alcohol, (if there will be any) drink, but don't get drunk. This is a fabulous night in, not a messy one. We don't want you girls burning each others ears and hair off with the straighteners or having cat fights over cupcakes. If you start to feel a little woozy, cut out on the booz-ey! It could also help to have some other things to drink, such as pink lemonade, tea or juice. Make sure the girls bring over some of their own make-up, some candy, and if they want, a movie. Girls nights in are a group effort!



My sleepover favorites;
Skittles, M&Ms, tomato basil and cream cheese volauvents, mini deep fried mars bars, Shiraz, caramel ice cream with masses upon masses of expensive chocolate topping, home made pink lemonade, Ceylon tea, strawberry and mango herbal tea, P.S I love you, The House Bunny, any silly hens night games, gummy worms and root beer, GHD straightener, Babyliss Conical Wand, Strawberries and marshmallows dipped in melted chocolate, cheap flavored lip gloss, truth or dare, togas, pink jammies, finally falling asleep, giggling in the dark, bitching about boys and playing with the wuppies.


Have fun girls!

xo-xo