Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

15 Things Every Woman Should Own

Author: Luinae

Blog: More Magic Always

Date: 23 August

While I am not quite a girl, but not yet a woman- I am a young adult. Lately, between all of my travel, back to school shopping, style posts, I've been giving some thought to what it means to be a woman in the 21st century. And not a ditzy, perfume wearing, shopaholic, clubbing woman. I'm talking about about an empowered woman. She is confident, beautiful, and in possesion of the skills, clothes, and knowledge she needs to make a wonderful life for herself. Why 15 things every woman should own? Well, I am currently 14 years old, and in keeping with the theme set in this post- I will be 15 at my next birthday, and I should have amassed these 15 things. Here is what I think every woman should have in her life:


1. The Perfect Dress- And I don't think it has to be black, either. (Black has the tendancy to make me look like a goth) Choose your favourite colour(s) and find this perfect dress. You should be able to wear it to cocktail parties, weddings, dances, graduations, or times when you just want to feel extra cute!

2. A Passport- Because travelling is eye-opening and interesting, not to mention great style inspiration! And what is more fabulous then jetting off to Europe or America? Nothing, that's what.

3. A Makeup Kit- Every woman's kit will be different- some will hold barely 12 products, while others will need shelves to organize there collection. I think every woman should own a makeup kit because it's a mood booster and it helps you feel great, and it's totally fun! Besides, studies show that women who wear makeup will get a promotion faster. Who knew?

4. An Ipod- Because music is the soul of life. It has the power to insire and move, and bring happiness and joy. And when you have an Ipod, you get to enjoy all the fun of buying cute headphones and cases! What 21st century woman doesn't have a portable music player, full of fabulous songs?

5. A Gorgeous Wallet- Instead of having to dig around in your purse, whip out a fantastic wallet- it should carry your keys, credit/debit cards, cash, coupons, I.D, and receipts. Mine is a beautiful black wallet that was a present from my sisters 2 years ago- I wouldn't even dream of carrying something else. You should be able to toss it into your bag and go.

6. A Best Lady Friend- While you don't own this, what would a woman be without one? If you have nothing else on this list- you must have a best lady friend! She should be honest, caring, funny, intelligent, has some similar and some different interests, who goes fun adventures with you, does silly things at midnight and make you feel better. The one you call when you had the crappiest day in the world because hearing her voice makes it better.

7. A Perfect Coat- Preferrably a cut that will never go out of style- peacoats and trenchs are my favourites. You should be able to wear this coat with ANYTHING, and it should be good enough quality to last for years.

8. A Gorgeous Planner- Personally, I am in love with my soft cover moleskine planner. This item is necessary- to be filled with all of the things to do in your life. Now, you will never miss an appointment, party, or anything ever again. A truly essential item that you will carry everywhere, so make it stylish. I love moleskines but there are other cute options like pink leather planners and such.

9. Big, Dark Sunglasses- For some extra movie star appeal, to be incognito, to hide dark circles, and to spy on your Ex while in Starbucks. O.k, maybe not that last one! Seriously though, these are such an essential! They help you look pulled together on days when you feel blah, and they protect your eyes from the sun- which could actually prevent eye wrinkles.

10. A Scarf- This is a personal style obsession of mine, but every woman should have one. It adds instant style to a t-shirt, suit, or dress. No matter what colour or style you choose, and if you want to wear it in a Parisian knot, a head wrap, or a knot- it will ad instant oomph and style to your outfit. How very French.

11. A Big Bag- Because you need to carry around lots of things, like your planner, cellphone, wallet, pens, a book, waterbottle, and all of the other things your purse seems to collect. Everyone has their favourites, so there is no right style, but you need one!

12. Fantastic Gloves- Probally one of the lesser known items on this list, but I believe that the right pair of gloves can instantly pull an outift together, especially in the Fall, Winter, and Spring when you are so often see in a coat, gloves are instant style. This is not the time to be sedate- amass a collection of pinks, blacks, blues and all colours of the rainbow!

13. A Favourite Accessory- As of the moment, mine are super long earrings. They accentuate my long neck and elegant collarbones- 2 of my favourite parts of my body. Cafe Fashionista is rarely seen without a cocktail ring, it is her favourite- something you can incorporate into an outfit and something you love. It tends to change with time, but they are essentail, as they make the outfit you.

14. A Pair of Heels- Oh, what a glorious item! They improve your posture, make you look slimmer, are impossibly chic, and give you an air of confidence. Black or purple, closed or peeptoe, 3 or 4 inch, the choice is yours. You may have to spend a little bit of extra money to get the perfect ones, but darling- it is so worth it.

15. A Hat- You can pull one off, there are about a million kinds out there, so I don't want to hear any excuses! Berets are so, so chic, top off an outfit perfectly, can be worn with an air of nonchalance- and you will look like you stepped off the train from France. Vintage shops are paritcurly good for this, as the hats there will carry an old movie star glam feel.

What do you think a woman should have in her life? What do you think of my list? 


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Landing your dream job – Part One

- Part of the Money Talks Series

It's all very well and good to have all the knowledge on where to bank and how to invest but in order to put these valuable principles into practice you need to have money. So, in today's edition of Money Talks we will be dealing with job hunting, how to get one, how to keep it and your rights and benefits.

As such, this post is divided into three parts:

  1. The ins and outs of how to get a job
  2. Making sure you keep it
  3. Keeping yourself empowered by knowing your rights and employment benefits

Here are the 6 steps involved in landing that dream job whether it be a part time student gig or a fulltime graduate position:

  1. Preparing your CV or resume
  2. The job search
  3. Approaching employers
  4. The application form
  5. The interview
  6. Getting the job
Step one: The CV or resume

This is a very important step and without a CV/resume you cannot apply for a job. Your CV/resume is the very first thing that your future employer sees. It is their introduction to you, so it is very important to make it a good one.

Always make sure that it:

  • has all the important info about you
  • is neatly typed and easy to read
  • has no grammar or spelling mistakes
  • is 100% truthful and accurate
Also make sure that you have all the necessary back up documents available at a moment's notice, this includes degrees, marks, reference letters or school certificates.

The set out and information included in a CV/resume varies from country to country so the information here will differ from what you know. In South Africa the basic structure should include information such as: name, address, telephone no, ID no, birthday, place of birth, condition of health, citizenship, marital status, dependants, drivers license details, tax number, current employment. The sections following should be: education – listing your highest qualification to your lowest, work experience – starting with your latest job; give dates; job description; name & address of employer; reference details, General – indicating any community work or extra details indicating the type of person you are, Special Achievements – sports awards, school certificates, were you a prefect on any school boards, Interest/Hobbies&Sports – these should be genuine and you should be open to discussion. Keep all information relevant.

Step two: The job search

This part of the process requires time and research. Your job is to identify the best places to find potential employers for the type pf job you would like to get. Here are a few suggestions of places to look:

  • Newspapers
  • Trade magazines
  • Employment agencies
  • Professional organisations
  • Employee organisations
  • Employer organisations
  • Community/Shop notice boards
  • Internet
Step three: Approaching employers

There are two ways of approaching potential employers:-

  1. replying to an advertisement
  2. cold-calling
In order to do either of these you need to write a job application letter.

Here are some basic rules and guidelines:

  • Keep it short and sweet – one page
  • Neat and tidy – type it up
  • Accuracy – check spelling and grammar
  • Specify – ask about the type of job you are seeking not just any job
  • Name – try your best to find out the name of the person you are writing to
  • Documentation – these include your CV, references and school/varsity records
  • Contact details – so they can reply to you
  • Individual letters – write each letter individually
  • Copy – keep one of each letter you send so you know what has and has not been said
If you are replying to an advertisement make sure you follow the specific instructions. Always keep it brief and to the point as well as professional and neat. If you are cold-calling be sure to find out the name of the individual you are writing to/contacting. Tell them who you are and your reason for contact. Do extra research and find out about the company and weave your info into your letter to show then you are interested in their company.

Step four: The application form

Most times you will be required to fill in a job application form. Make sure to read the entire form before filling it in to avoid mistakes. Write neatly and avoid spelling errors. If you can, photocopy the form or take an extra copy and do a trial run.

Step five: The interview

Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Be yourself
  • Dress smartly
  • Be on time or a little early
  • Answer questions in a clear and precise manner
  • Keep eye contact
  • Speak up and take a moment to formulate an answer
  • Have your portfolio present containing all previous correspondence and important documentation
  • Know the company before you get there, simple background knowledge
  • Questions – have any questions prepared before hand and think about what salary you would like
  • Find out about what happens next, know what the following contact will be after the interview
  • Have your diary and a notebook and pen to take down follow up dates or notes of anything necessary for later
  • End off by saying thank you regardless of the outcome
Step six: Getting the job

So you followed all the steps and you landed the job, always say thank you either in person or writing. Be sure to read your contract very thoroughly and take not of important information. If you do not receive a formal employment document it is advisable that you write down what you understand the terms and conditions of your employment to be and show it to your employer.

What are your tips for landing that dream job? Leave a comment!

Everyday Makeup - basics

Author: Leia
Blog: Hifashion
Date: 14 February

I'm definitely not a make-up expert, but for me, looking natural is most important. I thought I would share some of my tips and tricks to achieve an everyday, natural look.

1.) Prep the skin

My skin is naturally very dry, so moisturizing it is always my first step. I read once that everything you put on your skin is absorbed by it, and the chemicals in store-bought creams can end up in your blood stream. I don't know if this is true or not, but I do try to use natural products to moisturize my skin. At night, I slather my face with natural shea butter, and in the morning, I apply a thin layer of almond oil and massage it in. Both are very affordable, last a long time, and can also be used on dry hair.

2.) Dark circles

The skin under my eyes is naturally slightly darker than the rest of my skin. I think many people are prone to dark under eye circles, especially those with South Asian skin tones. I find that using concealer can make you suddenly look awake; my favourite is Benefit's Boi-ing which I use from my Realness of Concealness kit.
Some natural remedies if you suffer from dark circles:

  • Use cold slices of cucumer or used teabags on your eyes for a few minutes.
  • Gently tap almond oil under your eyes before bed at night.
  • Get plenty of sleep!
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Make sure you eat plenty of green

3.) Foundation

I don't find that foundation is a necessity for everyday. It is great for making skin tones appear even, or covering up blemishes. However, I find that it can sometimes look cakey or unnatural. Some ways to combat this is to mix your foundation with some moisturizer before applying it, making it thinner and letting your natural radiance shine through as well.
I do really like to use a tinted moisturizer, though. I have heard that in the winter, foundation can act as a barrier for your skin against the cold and the wind - I'm hoping this is true for tinted moisturizer as well! My favorite is Benefit's YouRebel.

A great, natural-looking foundation is the one made by BareMinerals. It's supposed to be really healthy for your skin as well. I bought mine in a kit from Selfridges; I think it was around £50 in total, but it came with two colors of foundation (skin tone can vary during the course of the year), a blush/contour color called Warmth (one of my favorite colors ever! It's so natural), a finishing powder, and three brushes. Lots of make-up companies have started to sell mineral make-up, so it's definitely worth trying out. What I love about mineral make-up is that you can apply as little or as much as you like, depending on the coverage you need.
But, for me, it is not something I use every day - just because of the hassle of it! My top priority is quick and easy in the mornings.

4.) Blush

Too many people forget to use blush! I think it's really important, though, because it really gives your skin a healthy glow. My two favorites are the Warmth by BareMinerals, as mentioned above, and Benefit's Benetint.

5.) Eyes

I think we can all agree that eye make-up is the most important! I know that for girls with fairer skin and lighter hair, mascara is an everyday essential. For me, that essential is eyeliner/kajal. I only wear mascara a couple of times a week, and on special occasions (current favorites are DiorShow and MaxFactor Masterpiece). Usually, I will just draw a thin line of pencil eyeliner on top, underneath, and inside the eye, and I am ready to go. My favorite eyeliners are Benefit's BadGal liner and Stila's Kajal eye liner.
As for eye shadow (when I have time to worry about it!) I recently bought the Benefit Big Beautiful Eyes kit (I'm sorry if I sound like a Benefit ad, I just really like their products!). It has got lovely, natural colors, and the darker ones can be used for a dressier look. If you are trying to look as natural as possible, it's important to choose eyeshadows that are matte, rather than sparkly or shimmery (the latter can be saved for nights out!)

6.) Lips

Much as I love red lipstick, it is a bit dramatic for every day! I have very dry lips (I swear by Carmex) so I usually start with some lip stain - Stila's Cherry Crush or Benetint - and put some lip balm on top. You can also line your lips with a natural/nude shade and top with gloss, like the ever-popular Lancome Juicy Tube.
Those are my tips for achieving a simple, natural look! My morning routine usually consists of concealer, kajal, and blush, but when I have more time, I try to incorporate some of the other things mentioned here. What are your everyday make-up essentials? Post about them in the comments below!

xx Leia


Monday, December 28, 2009

More Magic Always Defines Beauty

Author: Luinae

I have long wanted to write my own definition of beautiful. So, here we go! This is what I, and not society, thinks makes a beautiful woman today.

To be frank, I'm fed up with being told what beautiful is. I don't want to hear one more time that being tan makes you look prettier- it has nothing to do with how "beautiful" you are. I am not 6 foot tall and I don't weigh 110 pounds and I'm not going to. I don't have perfect proportions but that does not make me less beautiful. So what does make you beautiful?

♥ A beautiful woman is passionate about something- art, design, writing, math, fashion, politics, whatever!

♥ A beautiful woman is stylishly organized. She has a lovely planner and is never rumaging through a disorganized purse for keys.

♥ A beautiful woman speaks eloquently. She uses proper sentences and can communicate her ideas.

♥ A beautiful woman may know what the current trends are. And then she wears whatever she feels like and makes her feel good.

♥ A beautiful woman is not afraid of showing the world who she truely is. She embraces the unique person she is each and every day.

♥ A beautiful woman embraces her unique appearance. She isn't upset because she has a large bust, dark skin, brown eyes, or a short torso. She makes the most of what she has.

♥ A beautiful woman has a talent of some sort. Anything and everything goes. Women who can sing, write poetry, argue a point, run a marathon, write a PhD, write novels, blog daily, dress elegantly are all talented.

♥ A beautiful woman is clean and well kept. She may or may not wear makeup and have a polished hair style. But she will make an effort to wash her face, etc.

♥ A beautiful woman loves her life.



Sunday, December 27, 2009

Next Blog Carnival

I have received loads of feedback regarding this months Blog Carnival and lots of people expressed disappointment at not knowing about it as they really wanted to enter. While this one has taught me a lot and has not been without its glitches from my side which I do sincerely apologise for, I am really keen to host another!

Please vote for the next Carnival Theme by leaving a comment:
1.) Lesson's I've learn from/about..........
2.) Valentines Day
3.) Suggest a theme

Please leave a comment with a theme or your feedback on the current Carnival or the hosting of a new one.


Friday, December 25, 2009




Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas Ladies!
Hope you had a fabulous Christmas Eve and Day

Hope you were spolit rotten and ate loads of fabulous food.


Life Lessons From University

Author: Dawn
Blog: A dress & A bike 
Date: 26 August

I graduated yesterday after four long years of study and fun in university. The speeches were long-winded and referenced the recession a bit too frequently. Lots of standing around, clapping and shaking hands… but at the same time, it was good to receive my parchment with my degree, watch the pomp of the PhD graduation and receive some encouraging comments from my dissertation supervisor. Of course all this meant that my friends and I spent a few hours that night reminiscing about college life and the lessons we learned in four years…

  • Friends do not magically appear at your door. You need to go out and meet new people, talk to the person next to you in lectures and tutorials, join clubs or societies, make a contribution to student politics and socialise with your housemates. Friends can be made at any age on the basis of any interest and most importantly, may be the person you least expect to end up being friends with. Friendships need work, maintenance and love. They will have their good times and they will have their bad times…
  • Know when to say goodbye to someone who is no longer a friend and to distance yourself from some who is a negative drain on you. Recognise when it is a time to hold your ground and defend your opinions, and when you just need to quieten down. Let fights go and don't bring them back up again four years later 'cos that's just poor form! Also the girl that you thought was an unpleasant person can change so always always give them the benefit of the doubt.
  • Alcohol is great but it's also extremely horrible at the same time. Know your limits, don't mix your drinks, keep an eye on your drink and always always try to remember that your judgement is affected by drinking. Don't be the girl whose life is affected by a stupid decision made while drunk.
  • Experimentation is the name of the game in university. At uni, you have so many unbelievable opportunities to try new things so go experiment with identities, interests, looks, clothes, sports, classes and so on. You might never know, you could discover you have a natural flair for computer games or a esoteric interest in 16th century English literature.
  • Choose whom you live with very carefully. I have lived with random strangers and my best friends, and both of these living arrangements were fraught with difficulties. Different personality types tend to clash and you have to be able to walk away from household arguments without affecting your friendship. Also, living together will tend to expose any cracks in a unhealthy friendship so beware.
  • Some housemates can be odd about household stuff and can made random requests about the cleanliness/ quietness/ visitors/ cooking. Listen to their requests and make a compromise… Try to keep your house/ apartment's public areas somewhat clean and make a suitable arrangement with your housemates about this. Have a filthy, messy bedroom if you want but having clean tidy public areas can prevent so many arguments.
  • Try to start projects early in the semester by even getting the resources and laying the basic groundwork for a good essay. Contribute to tutorials and ask lecturers questions if you are confused. Remember lecturers don't really buy the excuse of 'my computer broke' or 'the printer crashed' so get your projects finished with plenty of time for technical errors or horrible hangovers. Should you be genuinely ill or otherwise unable to finish a project, your lecturer should have informed you in your module guidelines about the best way to proceed.
  • Most importantly, remember university is about both learning and having fun. Find that balance, get good grades but also have those memories from that crazy night out.

Any uni students have any more tips for surviving undergrad life?


Thursday, December 24, 2009

Flaunt your Favourite Feature

Author: Luinae

Date: 12 August

Instead of trying to cake on tons of makeup, copy the look of your best friend, or mimic what you see in a magazine, why don't you play up your favourite feature? Do you want to enhance your gorgeous green eyes, flawless charcoal skin, or sculpted cheekbones? Decide what feature is your favourite, or what people compliment you on the most, and then use this blog post to play up your favourite feature!

Remember, if you are playing up one particular feature, keep the rest of your face low key so that particular feature stands out!

Lucious Lips

Before you go to bed at night, put a coat of vaseline on your lips to prep them and make them soft and smooth for tomorrow.

Use an ultra- sheer, shimmery gloss that has a hint of colour, to add sparkle and shine and accent the natural shape of your lips.

Flawless Skin

When you cleanse your face tonight, mix some white sugar and extra virgin olive oil together and apply to your face. The sugar is a great exfoliant and the extra virgin olive oil makes your skin silky smooth and super soft.

Instead of covering up your great skin with foundation and powder, try a tinted moisturizer to let your natural skin glow through. If you can, even go without foundation…………and know that we're all very jealous.

Sculpted Cheekbones

Next time you go out for a walk on a cold day, check the colour that your cheeks turn in the cold air. This is your natural pigmentation and should be the blush colour you try to match.

Once, you've applied your blush, use a highlighter on the top of your cheekbones so they really stand out. To find your cheekbones, place 2 fingers under the outside corner of your eye. You bottom finger should be resting on your cheekbone.

Stunning Eyes

Eyes are the window to the soul, after all. Eyes are easy to play up, and can become very captivating and lovely with a few simple tips.

Apply a neutral eyeshadow from your lash line up to your crease and extend a little above the crease. This provide the background for the next step.

Apply a thin layer of black eyeliner along the upper lash line, as close to the lashes as possible. Wing slightly at the ends to create a fun look!

Awesome Hair

If you have naturally beautiful hair, stick with what you got! Don't waste your time on blow dryers and flat irons if your hair is already fantastic.

It doesn't matter weather your hair is curly, wavy, or straight. Put in an anti-frizz serum the night before and let air dry. In the morning brush and go for natural and beautiful hair!

What's your fave feature on your face? How do you play up your best features? Let us know in the comments!


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The 20’s = Puberty for the mind

Author: Linda
Date: 10 May

I thought the teen years were awkward, but it seems like puberty has an equally blundering and self-conscious sibling known as the 20s.

Rather than growth spurts, hair in new places, and manic sexual urges you have new ideas about the world, self-reflection and a never-ending quest to find our destined path/job/lover/life and I find this new stage scarier than when my chest first appeared.

Your previous institution has kicked your behind out of their pearly-gated, green-grass-growing 'safe zone', degree in hand, and now you're in the real world my friend.

While in school, you were either one of two things: a hippie-dream-following-liberal-arts-geek or a suit-wearing-shades-of-grey-right-or-wrong-practical-degree-follower. If you were the latter, you are probably behind a cubicle somewhere, enjoying the cash flow but hating yourself for pursuing that business degree. Let's leave you 'colors-within-the-lines' folk aside. I want to talk about my liberal arts, hippie brethren and sistren (and yes, that is the female equivalent).

If you decided to follow your dreams, I feel you. The job market sucks and the writers at Avenue Q hit the nail on the head with the question, "What can you do with a B.A. in English?" Nothing apparently. So you move back home to save money, see your dreams fluttering by when you couldn't afford your ivy-league dream schools and think three little letters to yourself:


So four years of working your butt off momentarily flickers in your mind as a waste; since those As in your portfolio aren't looking like anything concrete. No worries you think. You always etched in 300 back-up plans in your monthly planner. But those red ink x's you scratch above your original plans bring you down.

Sure, maybe life did not quite plan out the way you had hoped, but if you are anything like me, the surprises are what it is about. Yeah puberty had the mystery of training bras and maxi pads, but the 20s has a lifetime of surprises to begin to unravel.


Monday, December 21, 2009

How to change your perception

Author: Kim

Blog: Mermaid in a manhole

Date: 11 June

To change your life you must first change the way you perceive the world. Putting a positive slant on the way you view things can change your life for the better and even alter the way you see the past. Your own perception is your reality and you can choose how you view the world.

But how?

Start making the positives stand out more in your mind than the negatives. It's really easy to take things the wrong way, see things for way worse than they are, and ultimately make ourselves miserable. You're still going to see the negatives, but put less weight on them. You can choose what's more important.

Before you go to bed, make a mental or physical list of everything wonderful that happened in your day. Everything you are thankful for. It's a great pick me up and a wonderful thing to think about in those thoughtful moments before drifting off. It's also great to do this if you're feeling down.

View people as they truly are. Put yourself in the shoes of others and think about how they view the world and what might lead them to act the way they do. If someone's particularly positive and pleasant, think about why that is. If someone's hurtful and negative, think about what makes them that way. A little insightful thinking can drastically change the way you view situations, especially conflicts.

Stop complaining and find a solution. Effort is much better spent fixing a problem than venting about it. If the solution isn't in your hands, separate yourself from the issue.

Stressful thoughts should be banished. Creating more positive thoughts to outweigh the negative thoughts is extremely effective. Don't talk or think down to yourself.

Enter new situations with a positive outlook. You're not psychic and you don't know how situations are going to be so enter them assuming that they're going to be just fine. Most of the things you worry about never even end up happening and if they do you'll get through it.

Accept the fact that you can't control everything and just focus on how you can best react to situations instead of worrying about them occurring.

Stop and smell the roses. Really. Don't rush through your days and forget to notice all the little things that make life beautiful.

Recognize when to let the chips fall where they may and when to take control.

Remind yourself how lucky you are for all the amazing things in your life.

Learn to let things roll off. There are some excessive negatives in life that are unwanted and completely unnecessary. A lot of these negatives come from disgruntled individuals who don't know how to effectively get rid of stress & anger. Recognize that and only put weight on truths that should be addressed.

Learn how to address negatives positively.

Dedicate more time to learning and exploring instead of dwelling and venting.

Recognize where things truly stand in order of importance.

Learn to cherish the time you have with others instead of getting hung up on little negatives.

Look at what you have instead of always pining for what you don't.

Recognize the importance of beauty in the world in all of its forms.

Don't be afraid to laugh at yourself sometimes.

Banish self pity and adopt an "it could be worse" philosophy. It could, I promise.

Don't get caught up in other people's perception. This is dangerously easy to do, but keep control of your own views.

Spread the magic of positive perception. Remind others of the positives in negative situations.

"If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear as it is - infinite" - William Blake

"Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing." - Camille Pissarro

"After sleeping through a hundred million centuries we have finally opened our eyes on a sumptuous planet, sparkling with color, beautiful with life. Within decades we must close our eyes again. Isn't it noble, an enlightened way of spending our brief time in the sun, to work at understanding the universe and how we have come to wake up in it? This is how I answer when I am asked-as I am surprisingly often-why I bother to get up in the mornings." - Richard Dawkins

Friday, December 18, 2009

Sienna Miller – Star Style

Author: Rachel

Continuing on with the reader requested star style posts...

Today we have Sienna Miller!

A great coat and a heavy scarf are always nice items to have when the weather gets cold! While out in London, Sienna wears a plaid coat and carries a Tod's bag.

She was spotted at the airport wearing a scarf, Earnest Sewn jeans, a printed top, and a black jacket.

What sparkling ensembles! A Twenty8Twelve dress and Nicholas Kirkwood pumps look perfect on the Red Carpet at the 2009 MTV Movie Awards.

Sienna arrived at the CBS Studios in New York wearing a draped skirt and sequined top by Derek Lam.

Proving it's okay to wear the same thing twice, Sienna wears her simple, striped tank in different ways. She pairs it with a Twenty8Twelve skirt, Rupert Sanderson brogues, a Prada bag, and Benjamin Nicole sunglasses.

The same tank looks great with jeans and Havaianas flip-flops.

More stripes, because, well, who doesn't love stripes? While out in Beverly Hills, she wears a striped, long-sleeve Chanel tee, Miu Miu ankle boots, and carries an Yves Saint Laurent bag.

A striped tunic dress looks great with a Rock and Republic jacket, Ugg boots, and a Jimmy Choo bag.

Sienna wore this great printed Diane von Furstenberg dress to a G.I. Joe press conference in Korea.

While shopping in London, Sienna wears Twenty8Twelve skinny jeans, a printed jacket, and carries a Balenciaga bag.

She pairs a black jacket with a Twenty8Twelve top, and Russell & Bromley boots. For accessories, Sienna adds a Chanel cuff.

Sometimes your pants can either make or break an outfit. Bold, printed pants look fab with a Topshop lace top, Yves Saint Laurent bag, and Alexander Wang pumps.

Sienna wore these Twenty8Twelve wide leg pants and a plain, white tee while out in London.

Sienna pairs a printed dress with a Levi's denim vest, and Russel & Bromley boots while shopping in London.

She wears a Diane von Furstenberg dress with Christian Louboutin heels, and carries an Yves Saint Laurent bag.


What do you think of Sienna's style?


Little Red


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Makeup For All Occasions

Author: Luinae
Blog: More Magic Always
Date: 17 October

Are you still holding onto that old, melted lipstick? Well, first of all THROW IT OUT and then read this post to find out the expiry dates on your makeup. And then find out what you really need. Forget all that old makeup you have taking up drawer space and get some new products for all the things you do!

If you're working with little kids………..try a cream eyeshadow- You want to look friendly to young children so get rid of dark shadows and use a light cream eyeshadow so you look fresh and wide awake! I wear nude cream eyeshadow when I mentor a child once a week, very low maintenance.

If you've got tons of extracurriculars………..try a cream blush- Cream blush gives you a natural flush that helps you look attentive, and makes your skin look more glowy then powder. Plus, it's long lasting!

If you're playing a sport………..try a tinted moisturizer- Makeup sweating off your face is not cool, so save yourself the effort and wear tinted moisturizer to even out your skin tone. Add a bit of mascara to look pretty, not sweaty.

If you're going out with friends………..try fun eyeliner- For a night out with friends, swap your boring brown eyeliner for a fun colour- I like purple. Way more cute and colourful.

If you're going to a celebration………..try red lip gloss- If you'll be at a carnival, celebration etc. try a red lip gloss to make your whole  face glow! Gloss is way less harsh than lipstick and totally fun!

If you're having a relaxing Sunday………..try a multi purpose colour stick. A soft pink shade will work on your lips, cheeks, and eyes- perfect and fuss free!

If you've got a date………..try a lip stain for a healthy glow. Plus, studies show that guys like lips that look bare compared to the super slicked gloss look. Also, the guy won't have lipstick on his lips!

If you're going shopping………..try shades of beige. Nudes are natural and flattering, and they'll take you through a whole day of shopping. Apply a champagne coloured eyeshadow to the lid and finish with a shiny nude gloss.

If you're going to the movies………..try two toned eyeliner. Dab some plum gel eyeliner in the inner v and use a navy blue pencil on the outer or your top and bottom lashes. Blend into one another to make a serious statement.

If you're going to a part time job………..try contoured eyes- Pick up an eyeshadow palette from Revlon or N.Y.C to give yourself a sophisticated and sculpted look. Sweep the darker shades on outer corners and creases, and the lighter ones on inner corners and brow bones.



Wednesday, December 16, 2009

How To Wear Hats

Author: Harriet

Blog: Where is hariette?

Date: 15 April

Since my trip to the Stephen Jones Hat exhibition last week I've been thinking a lot about hats. Not so very long ago it was considered quite scandalous to be seen out without a hat, and while I'm (obviously) all for the freedom to wear whatever you want to wear, I'm also a bit sad because it feels like now it's very difficult to wear hats, if your not at Ascot or a wedding that is.

I think the problem I have with hats is twofold. On the one hand, hats are a bit annoying really. Sure the right hat perched jauntily atop your head looks awesome, but with my luck it always starts to rain, or it's so windy I spend most of the day chasing my hat, and as soon as I sit down in my lecture theatre there's nowhere to put it and the person sitting directly behind me gets cross.

The other problem I have is that hats make a pretty big statement, and sometimes that can be a bit scary. While most of the time I don't really care what other people think of my clothes as long as I feel fabulous, everyone can get self conscious from time to time, and hats have quite a habit of shouting 'look at me! I put this thing on my head on purpose!' which if you're not quite sure can be quite off putting. However! I am never defeated when it comes to fashion, so here are my tips on how to wear hats without a. getting very annoyed with it or b. feeling a bit stupid.

.Start small. I don't mean tiny hats (although they're awesome) but if you're unsure about the whole hat thing go for a simple beret or bakerboy - they're available everywhere in loads of cute styles, and can easily be squashed away in your bag if necessary. And looking a bit French can never be a bad thing!

.For cuteness and practicality in equal measure go for a headband with a ridiculously huge bow, or massive flowers. Who says fascinators should only be relegated to special occasions?

.If you have problems keeping your hat on your head use hairclips to attach it to your head under your hair or behind your ears so it's not too obvious. Alternatively go for a hat with an elasticated headband.

.Trilbys and fedoras are two more favourites that are appropriate whatever the weather, and add a much needed injection of Ratpack/indie boyband cool among all the girly options. Go for classic black or a light straw version.

.The bowler hat, introduced to us again by Ms Sienna Miller is another way to make your outfit a bit more modern.

.In summer a big floppy sunhat is totally acceptable in the city as well as on the beach. Just watch out for high winds taking it away! If you're not the big hat type go for a straw boater – but remember it isn't so great in the rain!

.In winter how about a felt cloche? They're very chic in an awesome 20s sort of way, the only downside is if you don't want to crush it then you need to have somewhere to put your hat safely if you want to take it off indoors.

.When not on your head display your hats proudly as works of art on a shelf or hatstand, or at least keep them safe in gorgeous hatboxes!

.Bright colourful headscarves totally count.

.Find a hat that flatters your face shape. You opinion counts the most. 

Any more advice my fellow hat fans?


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Lazy Girls Guide To Good Health

Author: Leia
Blog: HiFashion
Date: 11 June

As I've mentioned before, I am not a sporty girl. When my friends get excited about sports, running, and other physical activities (such as ice skating - I'm looking at you, Sherin!) I prefer to sit on the sidelines. Luckily, I've always had a slim frame and felt I didn't need to exercise to stay fit, but of course I was wrong: even naturally slim girls still need to maintain a healthy lifestyle! I recently had a reality check - first of all, I put on quite a lot of weight (8 kgs!) during my last year of university, and secondly, when I began trying to lose the weight, I realised to my dismay that I really wasn't as fit as I should be.

So girls, what to do? Does the thought of exercise repulse you; do you love snacking between meals? Fear not - there is no need to spend an hour in the gym every day or cut out carbohydrates from your diet in order to get fit or shed a few kilos!

Here are some quick and easy lifestyle changes you can make to help you live more healthily. Pledge to start being healthier today!

Drink more water.

I have never been in the habit of drinking water regularly, and used to drink a maximum of two glasses
of water every day! Appalling, I know. But drinking more water is actually easier than you may think. All you need to do is carry around a water bottle. Don't try to drink it all at once; take little sips throughout the day and you will be surprised as to how easy it is to drink more water! Check out this article to help you drink more.

What's so great about drinking water? It's good for your skin, it helps you lose weight (no calories, plus it acts as an appetite suppressant), it flushes out the toxins from your body, it helps with digestion, and more! This is the easiest change you can make to your lifestyle, and you can start immediately.

Keep a food diary.

You may think there is nothing wrong with your diet, but writing down what you eat can prove you wrong. Sometimes you just don't notice that you are eating that odd piece of chocolate, a couple of biscuits, or a small packet of crisps. If you write it all down, you will be able to plainly see what you are eating and it may help you cut out unnecessary, unhealthy parts of your diet. Also, if you aren't used to drinking lots of water, you should write down how much you are drinking per day. I love the water function on SparkPeople - it really motivates you to drink more so you can watch that cup fill up!

Eat healthier snacks

I love snacking in between meals. I especially love to snack on something when I'm settling down with a good book! It's okay to eat small bits throughout the day - in fact, it helps stimulate your metabolism, and many nutritionists recommend eating 5 small meals per day - but try to swap unhealthy options for food that's good for you and tastes yummy. Nuts, greek yogurt with honey, fruits, carrots or cucumbers, and salad, are all tasty and satisfying and much healthier than crisps and sweets.

Eat a proper breakfast

Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper: the age-old expression still rings true. Wake up 20 minutes earlier if you have to and make time for a good, healthy breakfast - it will give you energy throughout the day and is one of the healthiest changes you can make to your lifestyle. My favorite breakfast options: oatmeal with cinnamon, honey on brown toast, cereal, eggs (a boiled egg mashed with mustard and eaten with bread is healthier than fried eggs or omlettes!) ... the options are endless. Also, try to swap out coffee and black tea for green tea - sweeten it with honey and add lemon (it helps your body absorb the antioxidants). I like to add a pinch of cinnamon to my daily cup of green tea, too. You will get used to the taste, and it's very good for you - plus it has much less caffeine than coffee and it is so good for you. Not convinced? Read this article on the benefits of green tea.

Move your body

Uh oh... the part that you must have been dreading, if you are anything like me! But I firmly believe that there is at least one form of exercise that everyone can enjoy. Exercise doesn't have to mean playing sports or going for a run! It can mean going for a walk with your best friend/mum/dog, getting off one bus stop or train station early and walking the rest of the way, parking your car further away than necessary and walking to your destination, using the stairs instead of the lift - anything that gets you to move more than you are used to. Try to incorporate some stretching into your exercise routine, as well - touch your toes, stretch your arms and legs out, twist your torso! Check out this article and this article for some ideas.

My personal favorite type of exercise is yoga. You don't have to join a class if it doesn't fit into your busy lifestyle; I have tried many types and I have always loved Richard Hittleman's 28-day Exercise Plan. You can do it by yourself and you really do feel a change within your body in a short amount of time. If this doesn't work for you, why not try a DVD? I've tried Pilates, bellydancing, and yoga DVDs; it's fun to mix it up and try new things!

Also, I recently bought a mini trampoline. Bouncing on it is so much fun! I keep it in my bedroom, and if I am watching television, I get up during the ad breaks and bounce for 5 minutes at a time (although of course you can do it for longer periods, too!) It just keeps the body moving during something that may otherwise keep you confined to one place.

Get a good night's sleep

Don't underestimate the power of sleep. I recently read that some ladies took part in a study where all they had to do was increase their sleeping time to at least 7.5 hours each night, and without making any changes to their diet or exercise patterns, they all lost weight! Some people need more sleep than others, but if you are getting less than 7.5 hours every night, this needs to change. The average sleep needed per night is 8.5 hours - I like to sleep for around 9! If this means you need to sleep an hour or two earlier every night, do it. You will feel much more refreshed, alert, and happy once you start sleeping more. Also, try to sleep and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. I know this can be hard, but your body should establish a regular body clock.

Eat fresh, homemade food.

I know it's not always possible for those of us who live busy lifestyles to cook fresh food every day, but do try. Remember that anything you put in (or on!) your body is absorbed by it; do you really want all those preservatives in your blood stream?

Need proof that ready-meals and restaurants aren't good for you? Over a year ago, I decided that I didn't have time to cook and would only eat prepared food. After doing so for a week, I noticed that my hair started to fall out in chunks! After the second week, my hair was still falling out and I felt drained, weak, and sleepy all the time. I started cooking for myself again and my body started to heal very quickly. Of course it's okay to eat out as a treat once in a while, but I would recommend that you stay completely away from microwave/ready meals, and limit your intake of food that comes from boxes, tins, and cans.

Fresh food is healthier, cheaper, and tastier! Yes, it does require a smidgen more preparation time, but I promise you, your body will thank you for it. If you really hate cooking, make a pact with your roommates/family/friends to eat at least one (or more) meals together every day. You can cook together, eat together, and clean up together - it makes the whole process much more enjoyable!

~ * ~

So, lazy girls! No more excuses. Drink more water, watch what you eat, move your body, and get a good night's sleep - so simple, and so good for you!

This wasn't at all an extensive guide, and I am no expert, so please add your easy health tips below!
xx Leia

P.S. The best thing you can do for your body shape is to embrace it, love it, and treat it well.


Monday, December 14, 2009

Capsule Wardrobe – How much?

Author: Dawn

 Date: 14 September

Following on from Jane's Capsule Wardrobe Challenge in which I participated in the beginning of October I have had a number of thoughts about the viability of a capsule wardrobe in my life.

How many clothes are enough in a capsule wardrobe? 

As a student, my daily routine entails attending class, reading in the library, having a few drinks or tea in student pubs and common rooms, hanging out at people's house and occasionally venturing out on a Saturday night. This greatly simplifies the requirements I have from my daily wardrobe- comfortable, fun and casual could be the central themes of my wardrobe. If you throw in a couple of tops for going out and the requirements of my wardrobe are fulfilled. However if I had a full-time job with a smart-casual dress code and like to dress down on the weekend or had a busy social life, a capsule wardrobe would be much more difficult to implement.

However when you step outside the quantitative needs of your wardrobe and start to examine your qualitative relationship to clothes, you may find that you may be more drawn to a capsule wardrobe or completely reject the idea out of hand. If you love high quality clothes but are on a minimal budget, a capsule wardrobe in which you buy clothes which flatter you to perfection would be an obvious. However if like me, you love experimenting with new looks and enjoy having a wide range of clothes in a variety of styles to choose from each morning, a capsule wardrobe perhaps wouldn't be a solution to your wardrobe needs.

However I do think there are two important lessons which can be taken from the concept of capsule wardrobe. The first is the importance of certain basics which make your wardrobe function. Every wardrobe has its basics, regardless of whether its owner's style is funky, boho or classic. This may be a perfectly fitting pair of skinny jeans, a black pencil skirt or a denim mini skirt. It could be a white shirt or the perfect bag. It is worth spending the extra few euros here to get a flattering fit or unique details.

The second and most important lesson is that regardless of the amount of clothes in my wardrobe, I still often focus my style around a couple of central pieces within my wardrobe. For example in the summer, my wardrobe centred around grey and black leggings, skinny jeans, 2 pairs of delicate flat shoes and three dresses.I had many other summer clothes which supplemented those central pieces but mainly worked around those eight pieces of clothing. During the winter, this becomes more complex, as my summers are invariably short and often spent wearing a uniform for work, but certain central pieces are still apparent. In fact, I think that if you went into my wardrobe and removed underwear, tights, camisoles and slips, layering tshirts, summer clothes that I haven't packed away yet and clothes I don't wear regularly, I would probably have about 25 items of clothing in my wardrobe. Underneath it all, I have a capsule wardrobe but I just don't have the conscious capsule wardrobe mentality.

Do you have a capsule wardrobe?

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...