Friday, August 28, 2009

How to give yourself the ultimate pedicure

Since Spring is around the corner here in South Africa, we celebrate it in the 1st of September, its time for sandals and open toed shoes and nothing is worse than a beautiful pair of shoes ruined by unkept feel and nails. So, in getting ready for the wonderful Spring and Summer months here is how to give yourself the ultimate at home pedicure.

What you'll need:

  • a footspa (if you are lucky enough to have one) or a large bucket or tuperware container
  • a towel
  • a nail brush and pumice stone
  • an exfoliator
  • a foot mask
  • a rich body lotion or foot cream
  • a refreshing spray
  • cuticle oil
  • an orange stick
  • toe dividers
  • cotton wool
  • ear buds
  • nail polish remover
  • top and base coat
  • the nail polish colour of your choice
Pedicure Steps
First of all it very important to get comfy and view it as giving yourself a treat. I suggest putting on your favourite TV show, movie or DVD box set series. Make sure to gather all your supplies and set everything up before you hunker down to start the process.
  1. Fill the footspa or bucket with warm water and make sure that it is big enough to fit both your feet in at the same time. Fold the towel in half and put it down next to the tub and make sure you have somewhere you put your feet up.
  2. To start put both feet into the water and soak for 2-5mins till the soles of your feet are have softened.
  3. Next, dry your feet of slight on the towel. Transfer the towel to the table or surface that you are going to put your feet up on. Coat, one foot at a time in the foot mask and put them up on the towel. This will help to soften the hardened skin on places the heel even more and put your feet up will help with circulation.
  4. Leave on for 5mins. This will give you a change to sit back and relax.
  5. When the time is up put your feet back into the water and gentle rince of the mask and pat your feet dry.
  6. Next, squeeze an almond size amount of foot exfoliatir onto the palm of your hand and rub in circular motions all over your feet. Both top and bottom. Then take the pumice stone and work over the particularly rough and areas. Then use the nail brush to clean any and all dirty from the tops and under the toenails. Rinse of and pat dry.
  7. Next take a generous amount of lotion and slather all over your feet and put them up to soak in all the moisture.
  8. So now that you have rubbed and scrubbed your feet its time to focus on your toenails. Start by swiping each nail with some nail polish remover to get rid of any lotion.
  9. Next rub cuticle oil at the base of all of your toe nails. Take your orange stick and gently push back your cuticles. You don't have to do this step but I personally think that it makes the pedicure look more professional and polished.
  10. Next either put cotton wool between your toes or use toe dividers. Make sure that the cuticle oil has been absorbed before applying your base coat.
  11. Start with a base coat of clear polish. Apply in three strokes, starting in the middle of the nail and then then one on each side. Be careful not to get polish on the skin surrounding the toes. If you do simple take an ear bud soaked in acetone and remove it.
  12. Once the base coat is dry its time to paint on your chosen colour polish. Apply in the same manner using three stokes starting in the center. Apply one coat, wait for it to dry and then apply another. Two coats are necessary to give areally clean and polished look at and to build color and fill in any mistakes.
  13. Really fun things to do are to paint your nails a single color and then use different colours to paint small dots, flowers or patterns ontop for a really fun pedicure.
  14. Once you have completed painting and it has dried completely, its time to apply the top coat or bonder which bonds all the layers of polish together and protects your pedi from getting scrached or chippping.
  15. Lastly make sure that any polish that got onto the surrounding skin is cleaned up with a soak earbud and once your top coat is completely dry you are ready to rock all that fabulous summer footwear!
Got any tips and tricks to ensure a fabulous pedicure? Please share :)

Have an inspirational day


How do you spend your money

Part of the Money Talks Series

How many times have you asked yourself the question, "Where did all my money go?" or "What did I spend my money on?" A key life skill to have that will set you in good stead for life is the ability to learn good spending habits early on. Skills like that will set you up for life and benefit you no matter your income.

A spending experiment

The quickest, easiest and most importantly, the most honest way to see precisely what you spend and on what is to keep your receipts. So I challenge you to conduct a spending experiment. You can choose the length of time for which you do it, but, it must fall between a week to a month, nothing less. Anything more is overwhelming. I suggest you do it for a full month to get a really good overall perspective.

Step 1 - empty or box or a drawer in a prominent place preferable wherever you put your handbag down when you come in the door.

Step 2 - make sure you request receipts for all your purchases no matter how small.

Step 3 - put them in your purse or handbag till you get home, no throwing away.

Step 4 - when you get home place all the receipts for the day directly into your chosen place immediately.

Step 5 - any purchase you don't get a receipt for or money that you paid someone back for or debt orders off your account need to be recorded in a notebook. ALL OUTGOING MONEY NEEDS TO BE ACCOUNTED FOR.

Step 6 - when your allocated time comes to an end set aside an hour or so of your time to sort the slips and notes. Sort them into categories according to the purchase type. Eg. Clothes, going out, groceries, make up

Step 7 - Next, either using an excel spread sheet or a piece of paper make columns with headings that correspond to the piles you have made.

Step 8 - make a note of each purchase in its respective column stating the totaled amount on the slip and what the purchase for.

Step 9 - tally each column. This will give you a clear idea of what you spend the most on. It will show you where you are wasting money and where you could be saving.

This exercise is truly eye opening and give you the necessary wake up call you need when you see it in writing as to where all your hard earned money goes and what that money could actually be doing for you in the long run.

The good news is, is that now that you know where your money is going you can now reallocate those funds to more deserving purposes :)

The Steps to achieving this are:
1.) Having set goals - concept of paying yourself first
2.) Distinguishing between needs and wants
3.) Creating a budget
4.) Starting an emergency fund
5.) Holding onto your cash

Step one - Goals
As mentioned in the previous article you need to establish your short, medium and long-term goals as applicable to your age. Next you need to determine how much each goal is going to cost and how much you are going to put aside each month for each goal in order to achieve it. This is called PAYING YOURSELF FIRST and you should look at it as a reward, as a good thing. It should be, other than debt, the first thing you do with your money every month.

Step two - Distinguishing between wants and needs
It is very important to know the difference between wants and needs. You need to pay your rent but you don't need to go out for dinner every week. Always spend your money on your needs first that way you will have all the rest to play with. You will know exactly how much you have left for all those wants. The aim is not to deprive you, quite the contrary, the aim is to let you enjoy your money and fun. And won't you have more fun knowing that what you have left is all yours to play with and you don't have to worry about spending money you don't have?

Step 3 - Creating a budget
A budget is a written record of what happens to your money. It looks at the present (keeping track of your money), the future, (what you are going to do with your money) and the past (where has your money gone). It is important for keeping you out of debt and helps you to enjoy the money you have earned.

Step 4 - Starting an emergency fund
This is especially necessary if you are in the working world. This fund is to provide for those unforeseen circumstances that happen. What is the most financially devastating thing that could happen to you? Plan for it with an emergency fund. Often it is to look your job or source of income. Thus, the most common, is to save up enough to keep you going for between 3 - 6 months should you loose your job. This is just another reflection of how important it is to keep a budget so you know exactly how much you need to stay afloat for a month.

Step 5 - Holding on to your cash
Don't let yourself be swept up by people trying to sell you products that you don't need. A few ways to hold on to your hard earned cash are:
  • set yourself a weekly cash budget and stick to it, carrying large amounts of cash in your wallet is a bad idea
  • pay cash wherever you go and ask for a cash discount
  • carry your student card with you and ask about student discounts
  • when grocery shopping buy the stores "no name" brand as they are just as good as branded products but cost much less
  • get secondhand textbooks and for novels check out your local book exchange
  • look for furniture for your dorm room or apartment at second hand shops or auctions and refurbish
Good luck with conducting your own spending experiment and don't forget to leave any tips, tricks comments or to fill us in on your own experiences :)

Have an inspirational day :)


Thursday, August 27, 2009


Here are the blogs that inspired me to start my own blog and those which I have discovered since that have also become a constant source of inspiration to me :)

Golden Oldies

College Fashion - this was my very first discovery, and a constant source of fabulousness

Gala Darling - was my second find and is a truly inspirational blog with a twist

Charade - is one of my all time favourites!!! Something aspire to :) The articles are expertly written and the site is easy to navigate

The Glamourous Grad Student - is another of my favorites which I discover through Charade. The articles are well written and readers can relate well to the topics she discusses

Fabulous New Finds

Yes Yes - is a quirky and fun blog that appeals to me on every level and always has new and unique posts

With Love - is a really beautiful site that has fabulous fashion articles and the photos are amazing

Dubai Stylista - is a new fun fashion blog that is well written and has a lot potential

More Magic Always - is also a newer blog that is definitely one to watch. Its articles are well written and cover fashion and beauty

What do you think of these blogs? What are you favourites? Leave a comment and share your favourite blogs.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

SpRiNg HaS sPrUnG

Well, almost ;) On this side of the world its that time of year again when the weather warms up and the all the fabulous new Spring and Summer fashions start to appear on the shelves. Exciting stuff. This is my favourite time of year as I’m not a huge fan of winter fashions particularly because of all the very drab colours we always seem to see in the shop so I always get excited around this time!
While alot of you are on the other side of the world amd are heading into winter, what is appearing on our shelves now was on yours last season, and alas because of the weather differences we are always a season behind you. But in spite of all of that I’m going to take a look at some of my favourite fabulous new spring trends and how I will be incorporating them into my wardrobe.
The Charleston Era
I simply love this trend and the era that it comes from! Being a dancer myself I actually have a performance piece that comes from The Great Gatsby and am definately going out to buy myself a fab black number and simply say its a must have for my dance class
I love prints and colours so florals are definately a fav trend of mine which I am going to incorporate in the form of dresses. I am in desperate need of fun sun dresses to wear this season especially as it gets so hot here.
Graphic Prints
This trend is something that I’m on the fence about. I’m not sure whether I absolutely love it or not. I think its something to watch and again if I find a fabulous dress in a funky print and colours that I love its coming with me :)
Luxe Metallics
Metallic colours are still around and I personally think that incorporating them as accessories are the way to go. A metallic bag goes with anything and a pair of metallic sandles give a spot of glam to a casual outfit.Both of which are on my spring list.
One Shoulder Dress
This is a trend I really like and have been searching for a cute evening or going out dress that is one shouldered. I’ve also seen really nice fashion tops lately that are one shouldered and would look great paired with jeans and shorts alike making them versalite for day or night.
The playsuit is still around and a trend that I think has the potential to be super cute. In my opinion the long legged playsuits are something that you need to purchases in a good quality material to make them look amazing as the cheaper ones look cheap, especially if you are wearing it to an evening event. I personally adore the shorter, cuter more fun ones that can be pulled of by the everyday consumer. I, myself wanted to buy one last season but was put off by my mom who look at me like I was crazy. So this season Im going to go playsuit shopping alone.
This is a trend I love and advocate wearing the colour all year round. I have a standby tried and tested pair of billowy white pants that I wear constantly. And this season there are tons of ways to incorporate it into your wardrobe. Personally I have my eye on a white handbag something I’ve been searching for as well as a pair of white heels, preferable peep toe. And then there are so many fabulous white dresses that I’m definately going to scoop up a few of those.
So theses are my favourite trends for Spring, what are yours or should I say what WERE yours and how did you incorporate them into your wardrobe?

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Money Talks - Introduction

Part of the Money Talks Series
I was recently luckily enough to be payed double my normal fee for a contract that I completed which I must admit was a rather difficult job. As a result I now have a rather large sum of money and while it is ever so tempting to use this windfall to purchase an entire new wardrobe and decorate my new flat with everything I am lusting after I decided instead to “save it for a rainy day”. And so, I embarked on a quest to find out the best way to go about putting my money away and along the way I accumulated a wealth of information in the form of a book which which I thought I would share with all of you :)

So, to begin with you need to formulate a plan.

How To Formulate A Plan

You need to know:
- Amount you are receiving
- Amount you are paying out
- Amount you are owed
- Amount you owe
- What your financial goals are
Your plan needs to be:
- realistic
- and flexible, must be able to adapt to your changing lifestyle

The 4 steps of creating your financial plan

1.) Set your goals

Your goals should be divided into categories:

- Short term goals: these are usually needs as opposed to wants eg. paying for studies or a car
- Medium term goals: these are both wants and needs eg. starting a blog to support yourself
- Long term goals: these are goals that are mainly thought of for when you are working

Ideally you should have an estimated cost of how much each will cost you. The types of goals which fall into each category will be different for everyone and depend on which stage of your life you are in. Don’t frightened in to thinking you have to start a retirement fund today. The concepts outlined here are to help you get a general idea and hopefully give you a sound financial knowledge that you can use for many years to come.

2.) Make a Budget

This records where you are planning to spend your money and how you have spent your money. It outlines what you get in and what you spend. This helps answer the question that many students and young people have of, “where did all my money go? What did I spend it on?”

You have to:
- Be realistic
- Make sure income to exceed expenditure
- Prioritize
- Paying yourself first

These will be expanded on later.

3.) Your Balance Sheet

This is a representation of what you own and what you owe others. Do not be deterred if you do not have many things if anything to list.

4.) Finally, you need to pull everything together into a cohesive plan

Your aims here are to use what you have identify what you need, what you can realistically afford and to determine which of your goals are a priority.

- All ideas and concepts are based on reading the book “Getting Started – Money Matters for Under 25’s” by Bruce Cameron

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Money Talks Series

I’m going to be starting a 10 part series called “Money Talks” which will cover everything from opening a bank account to investing and even financing a pair of wheels.
The topics are as follows:
1.) Introduction – How to formulate a plan
2.) How do you spend your money
3.) How to save and where to bank
4.) Basics of investing
5.) Debt and how to deal
6.) The importance of education
7.) Landing your dream job
8.) Moving onto your own place
9.) Financing your own wheels
10.) Venturing overseas
So check back regularly :)
Have an inspirational day :)

Sunday, August 16, 2009



Here are a few really awesome sights that I have recently discovered that will be of great interest and use to fellow bloggers in particular:

1. Project Wonderful is a great auctioning alternative to Google Ad Sense

2. Reddit is a useful tool to get your blog out there in the World Wide Web and up readership

3. is a visual feast and contains popular images from all over the web

4. Twitterfeed allows you to update your twitter account with the last blog postings with out
having to do a thing

Have fun and enjoy :)


Save or splurge - Beauty products

Knowing which beauty products to save or splurge on is a great help to your budget and your skin. Saving money in certain areas mean that you can invest in good quality products in other areas where quality is a must.

This is an area where you really need to invest. Your skin is so very important and and lays the foundation for make up. You would not believe the difference it makes when you apply good quality products to your skin. So what should you splurge on and where can you save?

Face Wash - save
This is an area where you can save. expensive facial cleansers are not necessary unless you have highly sensitive skin or a particular skin condition but for the most part a simple basic face wash is all you need.

Toner - save
Toner is not always necessary and unless you are a die hard fan it can be skipped altogether. You can save a bundle in this department by buy an inexpensive bottle of rose water from your local pharmacy which works great for sensitive skin. My personal use for toner is at night, for any occasion that I don't get a chance to wash my face before going to bed I use toner to cleanse before bed.

Moisturizer - SPLURGE
This is one of the most important beauty products you will ever own. This is where you will improve your skin and solve your problem. SPLURGE, SPLURGE, SPLURGE!!! I cannot say this enough. The very best thing to do is to go to a salon and speak to one of the professionals there, even better, have a facial. This is a great opportunity for the beauty therapist to assess you skin type and to discuss any particular problems you may have. They will be able to suggest products and tell you more about your particular skin type and the direct you to the type of product you should be buying.

Night Cream - save
Whilst moisturizing at night is a very important step and should not be skipped there are alternatives to buying an expensive pot of cream. Firstly, if your daily moisturizer does not have a built in SPF then it can double as a night cream and you can save money. Alternatively, aqueous cream is a great product which is reasonably priced and will provide that extra bit of moisture that is need in a night cream.

Sunscreen - splurge
Sunscreen is an absolute must where ever you live, whatever the season. Its your first defense against sunburn and more importantly wrinkles. A good quality facial sunscreen is extremely important. Neutrogena makes a fabulous sunscreen that is ultra sheer and creates a lovely matte finish instead of a shiny finish like some products. An SPF of 15 is the minimum and even though your daily facial cream may contain an SPF of 15 it is highly recommended that you also make use of a daily sunscreen on top of that.

Makeup remover - save
Make up remover is a must, especially eye make up remover. Its very important to remove all eye make up especially before you go to bed as it can cause all sorts of nasty eye problems and more horrifyingly - WRINKLES! This is a product that does not neccessarily need to be a specified makeup remover as such but anything that works for you. Some people swear by certain creams like acqueous, other baby oil or facial wipes that work as make up removers aswell.

Lip balm - save/splurge
Lip balm for me is an essential. I'm not talking tinted or glossy I'm talking a tub of plain lip balm to moisturize your lips and create a soft not chapped base for lipstics and glosses. Now whether you save or splurge on this is up to you. For those of you who are luck enough not to have problems with dry and chapped lips its not necessary or you can use any product thus you can save however, if you are like me and have a problem with dry chapped red lips its definately an area to splurge. Its very important to try different types and find the one that works for you. Labello has a good range and even has moisturizing lip balm in colours so if you do want it all in one they have some great products.

Other products - Extras
Other products that most women purchase as part of their beauty regimine are masks, eye creams, neck creams and moisture serums. In my opinion theses are fabulous itens to have if you have the cash or if you have a really problem area that needs extra attention. However, the average young 20 something college student or graduate can get away with the basics.

Hope this was helpful and insightful,
Don't hesitate to leave any of your own beauty save/splurge tips or beauty brands that work wonders in the comment section.

Have fun and enjoy


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Charade

Charade is one of my all time favourite Blogs and served as inspiration for starting my very own blog so just want say a very big HAPPY BIRTHDAY and may there be many more birthday celebrations :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Decor tip #2

Hooks are so handy. Depending on whether you own or rent the space the type of hook you buy will differ. People renting a space should look for self-adhesive hooks with double sided tape which can be put up and taken down with minimal to no damage. Also, refrain from put them up on walls as they can chip the plaster when removed. They are handy to put up behind the bathroom door for extra towels or bathrobes, the the door for coats or scarves, or on the inside of your closet for extra bibs and bobs.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Decor Tip #1


This is really useful for storing valuable's if you don't have a safe. It can be used to store things such as expensive jewelry, passports, ID's, drivers licenses, bank cards, money and important documents. They are easy to find and stocked at most local office supply stores. Make sure that it comes with at least two key's, put one on your key ring and tape the other to the inside of a cupboard or shelf, where nobody would think to look.

Technical difficulties

I apologise for my delay in postings. I seem to be having reoccurring technical difficulties with both blogger and my email. Extremely frustrating to say the least as I have two fabulous post but for some reason keep having errors. I will keep working on it.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

What to wear when visiting South Africa

Or more specifically, Cape Town South Africa. Having travel a little, in North America, I have a renewed awe for the beauty that is the Cape and have decided its time to spend this years summer holiday being "a tourist" in my own city. Many of these things I've done over the years but not recently and as these are such fabulous fun places to go to, and as my boyfriend has not done some of them, I think its time to do it all again :)

The one problem with Cape Town and its surrounds is that the weather is SO unpredictable and you can often have all 4 seasons in a single day! A real nightmare to dress for when you heading out for the day. So, I have put together a "capsule wardrobe" for visiting South Africa in the spring (starts in September) to summer (ends around April) months.

The best way to deal with the potential "all weather day" is to layer. As it gets extremely hot in the height of summer which would be December through to the end of February its advisable to pack light airy fabrics that breath thus also allowing for the odd day when things get a bit cooler as you can layer thinner fabrics. Also be warned that even though its summer, Cape Town is known as the windy city. It can be relentless and for this reason tights to be worn under dresses and skirts is a must have.

So, working out way down the list of items:

1.) a variety of cute casual tops in different colours and styles that can be layered

2.) cute sundresses are a must if visit during the height of summer as they keep you cool

3.) a variety of shorts and skirts are also a good idea as well as jeans for evening when it gets cooler

4.) as the weather is unpredictable I would suggest bringing one coat or windbreaker for the cooler days and evenings for when going out and a jacket for during the day for just in case

5.) flat shoes are your best bet as there will be a lot of walking and sight seeing and a lot of the fun things to do are outside and include water, sand and mountains ;)

6.) lastly, the small essential items that you will need are, a big spacious handbag (with a zip - safety reasons), sunglasses, an umbrella and as mentioned before tights wear under dresses and skirts

So this is what you should pack if you coming to South Africa this up coming Summer. I volunteered to do a "City Chic" article over at the Glamourous Grad Student and embarrassed to say that its been a whil and haven't completed my article but I will be putting the finishing touches on it so keep you eyes peeled for a "City Chic" article in the next week which will complement this article nicely.
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