Monday, April 30, 2012

Patanjali Divya Kantilep {Product Review}

Guest Review by Ankur

Price: Rs 30 

Ingredients
Lawsonia inermis (mehndi beej), Curcuma amada (aamahaldi), Rubia cordifolia (manjeeth), Myristica fragrance (jayfal), Santalum album (chandan shwet), Acacia catechu (katha), Valeriana wallichii (sugandh bala), Cinnamomum camphora (kapur), Aleo vera, Amomum subulatum (badi ilaychi), Moti Pishti, Sphatik Bhasma

My Experience
Divya kanti lep works like magic on skin. It's not gonna make you fair or something like it, but it will give you a clear skin without any acne ,pimples, red bumps, blemishes or other skin-disorders. That's my experience with the product. There's no harm in trying it, as it costs only Rs 30 for 50 gms. I brought one two months ago and still have much left. It is advised to use with fresh unboiled milk or rose water and then keep it  on face for 3-4 hours. I use it every night. After applying it I just go to bed and remove it next morning. Just after applying, it gives a cooling effect which is really good. This product is very useful for people who want clear skin without any skin disorder. It has helped me a lot. I personally recommend it to everybody to use this at least for once because its an amazing product. A must have according to me.

Read about other products from Patanjali:
Patanjali Ojas Multani Mitti Soap

My good deed for the day :D

this was my request
Ok, so, this is pretty random and means a lot lot to me :) No, I didn't do anything great!!! Its just that I helped an unknown (redundant) complete stranger to select a hair style for her engagement next week!!! How did that happen? I posted a request on the Luxy Hair facebook page regarding a hair style which I found very pretty. And, later on, this girl turns up and asks for the video for my request.

Me: Hey, I have just put up this request so the video is not yet up!!!

Her: Oh, I needed an open hair style for my engagement next week.

Me: You should check out their youtube channel. 

And, I go and check out their youtube channel because I remembered a very pretty greek goddess hair style I watched a while back. I dig it up and post the link to the video for her. And, she liked it a lot and finalises on the hair style. Well, I don't know if she is gonna stay with it till next week (girls are liable to change their minds) but then I felt like I did a very nice job :D And, I am feeling sooooooo happy for her.

Btw, before I forget, yes, you would also want to know about which on eI chose so check out the video. This is from Luxy Hair which has a youtube channel run by two twins - Leyla and Mimi and they are just soooooo beautiful and have gorgeous hair and their videos are amazing!!! I kinda developed a girl crush :)

PS: This happened yesterday

Sunday, April 29, 2012

My Experience with Kamini Aunty

Kamini Keshika Hair Clinic Products
Well, you would all be wondering who the hell is "Kamini aunty"??? I came to know about her from Mehak's blog and on my recent trip to Delhi, I went to this lady who is supposed to be a miracle for hair. She can cure any hair problem apparently. She runs her hair clinic from her house in Safdarjung enclave. And, the clinic is just like a home parlour.

Kamini Keshika Hair Oil K-100 and Ginger Hair Tonic
Oil and Ginger Tonic
I went to her with my mommy. "Kamini aunty" looked at my hair and declared that its thin and she didn't really say much about my hair. I got her to check my mom's hair too and she declared that my mom has very dry scalp. And, she instructed the girl on what to use for our hairs and off we went in for the treatment. It consists of 3 things basically:
  • Oiling - She has variety of oils of probably different grades. The girl attending me gave me instructions about how to go about my routine. And, she applied really a LOTTT of oil to my hair (around half a cup). It is supposed to have lots of herbs.
  • Ginger Tonic - After the oiling was done, this was applied to my scalp only. Its basically ginger powder infused in vinegar. This is for aiding the hair growth since ginger stimulates hair follicles.Well, I do think other herbs might also have been there. It has to be left on for 30 minutes.  
Kamini Keshika Multi Herb Hair Pack Mix
  • Hair Pack - After the ginger tonic, a hair pack is applied on the scalp and the ends of the hair and then, the hair is covered with a shower cap. This is made from many pulses and other ingredients and it smells strongly of dhania and it smells really warm. It also has to be left on for 30 minutes.
And, then, I am left for 30 minutes for the treatment to soak into the scalp. Meanwhile, I watch the whole procedure being followed on my mom and this is the first time she is getting any kind of a hair treatment so I was obviously enjoying it a lot :D And, then, I was taken for a hair wash which includes a shampoo and conditioner free of chemicals. Finally, my hair is blow-dried and my hair really felt so soft.

Kamini Keshika Shampoo and Milk Tonic
Shampoo and Conditioner
So, what's the treatment?
We are prescribed a shampoo, conditioner, hair oil and the ginger tonic. The treatment has to be done everyday for the first week in the same order as I have described above. And, after the first week, it has to be done on alternate days till you see the desired results. The hair pack has to be applied weekly once. I was told that I would see the new growth in two months.

How much does it cost?
Yes, it is expensive. Not overtly but still it is. Frankly, I wasn't prepared for the bill presented to me but my mom had already anticipated it. The shampoo and conditioner cost about 400, the tonic is around 800, hair pack is 600 and the hair oil is around 2500. To be just, even my dad said that the quantity given was good enough.

How am I liking it?
I went to her on 18th April. I have used the products around 5 times till now. Yes, I wasn't regular as I should have been in the first week and neither was I in the second but I hope I shall be from now on. But, strictly speaking, I would say that the treatment has brought out shine in my hair. And, it has definitely become more manageable with less flyaways.

Also, I love the shampoo a lot. Its free of chemicals and it smells nice and it seems to be a concoction of reetha and shikakai with orange fragrance. Its watery enough but not entirely watery and lathers well enough but not exactly generously but cleanses my hair nicely. And, I like the conditioner too. It lathers a lot and doesn't weigh down my hair.

Of course, none of the products ingredients are written as they are supposed to be a secret. And, whether I'll have a head full of hair, only time will tell. But, being a cynic, I do have a small doubt. If I follow the very same routine with regular products in the same time frame, will it yield results??? Of course, taking into consideration that I choose a SLS free shampoo and silicone free conditioner. What do you say??

Kama products availability in Hyderabad?

Since my review of the Kama Brigandi oil, I have been receiving pretty many mails on where exactly are the Kama products available in Hyderabad and even in India overall. I actually forgot to include the section of availability in the review so I am putting up a separate post. 

Hyderabad
You all would be aware of the very famous Ohri's Jiva on the Raj Bhavan road. Just opposite to this restaturant is Pizza hut  from where if you walk 10 steps, you come to a fork where you can find the MMTS (local train) station, backside of Necklace Road. Just in that lane, go past the station and you come to a hotel "The Park". Go into the hotel and inquire for "The Box" where the Kama products are sold. 

For those who are completely lost with my sense of direction :D, here's the address and phone number:
THE PARK HOTEL 22,
RAJBHAVAN ROAD, SOMAJIGUDA.
HYDERABAD - 500082,
PHONE - 040 23456789 / 44990000 

All over India
Well for all others, there is a page on Kama ayurveda site which lists out the retail shops. You can check out the page here and go and click India. It gives a pop-up.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

How much oil do you apply? {Your Opinion}

hair oil in silver bowl
I didn't know what to write for today so I thought I'll pose a question to you all today. The premise of this question is something which I shall reveal in the following week but this question has nagged me to no ends since long.

How much oil should be applied? And, where should the oil be applied? How long should the oil be kept? Should you cover it with a shower cap or not? And, also, how should one go about applying oil or massaging the scalp? I searched on this topic and I found out that some people apply oil only to the hair length!!! Well, oil has to be applied to the roots and massage din so that it reaches the hair follicles and nourish it.

For my part, I don't have any answers yet. And, I am confused on all accounts. So, hoping that you would solve my confusion ;) Adios!!!

PS: Do you watch Vampire Diaries? I am not, in general, a fan of VD but this season is undoubtedly the best and I am in love Klaus :)

Friday, April 27, 2012

Open Pores? {Reader's Query}

"I am having normal to skin, I don't have acne problems but I have some tiny pores around my cheeks and in the forehead. Please do suggest me a solution for this. I don't know how I got this pores , I use to scrub my face once in three days. I thought this should be a problem so I have started to use scrub once in one week."

Open Pores and Causes
Open pores are one of the worst problems of a smooth and flawless look. I do have huge pores on my cheeks, upper lip area and even forehead and sometimes, when my face is too oily, these pores look even bigger which is such a buster for me. Open pores are not exactly a problem but can occur to anyone at any age. 

In fact, the size of the pores is dependent on two factors, neither of which are under your control - heredity and age. Yes, if either of your parents have large pores, your tend to get large pores and sometimes, the size of these pores tend to increase with age or rather the prominence of the pores increases with age. 

How to control the Open Pores
Reducing the size of the pores is impossible. So, any product which promises to do that is lying. Ok, yes, it is possible to get a flawless look with the help of foundations or tinted creams but if you use mineral makeup, sometimes, the pores can get enhanced instead of getting covered up depending on the quality of the product. This can happen with cream foundations too at times if its not blended well. Thus, to get a flawless look, it is essential to have a good brush for application as well as a good product. 

Also, since the size of the pores is more, the dirt can get entrapped more easily and likely, there is more dirt inside so cleansing of the pores becomes essential. Generally, oily skin has larger pore size and consequently, more secretion of sebum. Thus, the pores have to cleansed on a regular basis. Three times a week is a good routine.

Home Remedies to reduce the pore size
These are temporary solutions and can be done as a quick fix.
  • Egg White mask: makes the face firmed up, lifted up and pores size also gets decreased. 
  • Ice cubes: Cold constricts the pores size and gives a flawless blending of the foundation. 
  • Cucumber: Similar to ice cubes effect. 
  • Honey: helps in making the skin smooth. 
What do you do for open pores? 
Image Courtesy: ourvanity.com

Thursday, April 26, 2012

My Haul and Other Things

So, I am back to Hyderabad and wallowing in sadness :D And, as you all would be probably aware that my camera had not been functioning properly so I got my other camera this time from home. And, now that I can again take many snaps, I wanted to share some of the hauls in the past months and some other things. Do check out till the end :)
Kara Wipes and Neutrogena new sunscreen from New U and got a nail buffer free :)
Neev soaps from naturalmantra, Parachute body lotion dry skin and body shop haul :)
A word about the above products - Neutrogena new sunscreen is pretty light and oil free but extremely expensive (400 for 30 ml), Kara wipes good as always, Parachute body lotion is good but not for summers obviously ;), ginger body butter is not at all worth the cost (I am regretting it) and I love, love and love the Polynesian Monoi oil.
Essential Oils - rosemary, lavender, neroli, frankincense, bergamot, patchouli, cedarwood, ginger, cinnamon bark
 and, cocoa butter from moksha lifestyle
Loving the essential oils but undecided on the cocoa butter. And, now, a very very very special thanks to Taps for this sweet gift :) Well, remember the huge Glossy Box debacle??? Yes, Taps of Beauty Through my Eyes (she has her first giveaway on so don't forget to participate) sent me this wonderful gift as a substitute for the giveaway win even though I told her not to many times. Thank you sooooooooo much, Taps :)
 
I have been hearing such good things about the chocolate mask that I was very much tempted to get this but I restrained myself as I have so many products to finish. Now, I'm gonna use it ASAP, yippeeee :) And, that's another Neev soap to the collection. And, the third is the fresh line Blue Chamomile mask which was also one of the products I wanted to try. So, this weekend is gonna be a pamper session for me :D

Tan lightening Face Pack {Reader's Tip}

Health and Beauty suggested this home made mask to lessen the tan in the summers.
"if u have normal or dry skin.. apply oatmeal+yoghurt face pack once or twice a week... this nourishes the skin and also has lightening properties..."
Submit your favourite beauty tips here. And, don't forget to read other Reader's Tips here.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Kama Brigandi Intense Hair Treatment {Product Review}

Price: Rs 625 for 250ml

Ingredients

Pros 
- makes my hair look shinier and feel softer 
- little amount is enough to cover entire length of hair 
- light in texture but extremely nourishing

Cons
- very expensive!!
- can weigh the hair down if applied in excess

My Experience
You would have seen the product mentioned in my monthly hair journal entries. I thought this is a good time to review it since I have been using the product on and off since more than 6 months. Its a strong smelled oil but that doesn't really bother me though it offends my friend's nose :D Yes, its strong. And, its a dark coloured oil as you can see in the pic.

I like the oil overall. It gives my hair shine and also makes my hair look darker. It has helped the hair texture to improve slowly. And, whenever I wash my hair after applying it, my hair looks shinier. And, the texture of my hair becomes softer. It gets washed off quickly and is a light enough oil to be used for oily scalp as well.

The product is definitely expensive. Yes, I would recommend the product and yes, I shall buy it again after my current stock of oils get over!!! 

Have you used this hair oil?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Dark and Dull Skin in summers {Reader's Query}

"My age is 25, female. Suddenly my skin become dark in face and arms even though I'm not going in sun. Dark circles are coming. Face become dull. Please tel some treatment. Thanks."

Dark and dull skin is a very normal occurrence in summers. Dark circles are a different issue on a other hand.

Diet
I have long before mentioned that if you ever find your skin getting uneven complexioned, iron deficiency can be one of the foremost reasons. Also, dark circles are an indication of iron levels in your body. So, if you are not sleep deprived or stressed out, this is the reason for those unwelcome dark circles. Try eating a balanced diet. 

Dull and Dark Skin
Dehydrated or oily skin can also look dark. So, keep your skin supple, hydrated and oil-free at all times. Use a good moisturiser to preserve the skin moisture. Using face sprays is also a good way to perk up your skin in intervals. You can prepare one at home as well. Eat foods which will keep your skin hydrated from the inside and drink enough water.

Tips to remove tan
Tomato, cucumber and potato are great for tan removal. You can check out other home remedies for summers here. If used at night, they help in removing tan as well as keeping the skin in supple condition.  

Tanning without sun
UVA rays can penetrate indoors as well and UVA rays are the main cause of pigmentation. So, using spf 15 broad-spectrum sunscreen when indoors is a good measure of protection against these rays and tanning and pigmentation when inside.

Product Recommendation
  • Lactocalamine for sun protection when indoors
  • Rustic Art Aloevera Gel for improving hydration levels of the skin. Use it only at night as a night cream as it contains lemon extracts.
What else do you suggest?

Image Courtesy: marieclaire.com

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Moisturizer for dry skin? {Reader's Query}

Since I hardly stick to any moisturiser in the long run and till date, I have liked only three moisturisers long enough to consider re-buying, I would definitely need all the help from you. So, the lady asks me:

"I am 28years and I discovered some few wrinkles coming up. I take care of my skin and body as much as I can. I always do home remedies and I also use chemical brands. I have recently used bodyshop vitamin E moisturisers, cleanser, undereye cream but I didn't notice any good improvement. So Now it has been a week that I am looking for a anti wrinkles cream...I still dont want to apply anti aging stuff but I am really confused which brand to use and which is good for skin. You know how many brands are there in the markets but hardly you can find something that suits the skin. I am writing to ask you if you know any brank that will serve this purpose. and also any good moisturizer, sunscreen and cleanser."

Regarding the moisturisers, I advised her for Aloevera Gel from Rustic Art and Biotique Wheatgerm Cream which I had used in these winters and I would be posting the review in these winters but just for the record, its really good and I would recommend it to anyone. In fact, I am also considering other creams from Biotique but they are heavy and best used in winters unless you have dry skin. Also, I did like Liz Earle moisturiser but its pretty expensive when you include the shipping costs. I also advised the lady for cleansers from Lush. She is already using one from Lush. So, hoping to get more suggestions from you all :)

Also, the lady needs reviews and thoughts on the following 3 products:
  • Kiehls - Ultra Moisturizing Eye Stick SPF 30
  • MAC - Mineralize Charged Water Moisture Eye Cream
  • Prevage Eye Eye Ultra Protection Anti-aging Moisturizer SPF 15
So, what are your suggestions, ladies :)

Image Courtesy: truegirlonline.com

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Awarded!!!

So, I received the award from Tanmayee from Celebrating Femininity and Divine Blush from A Makeupholic Confession. Thanks a lot Tanmayee and DB :) I am not going to pass it on to anyone. Instead, I want to dedicate the award to every blogger and every reader who supports all the beauty blogs and makes it a fun place and hobby. Thanks a lot guys :)
Moving on, 7 random facts about me:
  • I love giving and receiving surprises.
  • I am a dreamer, day and night :D
  • I don't look my age :)
  • I love travelling and wanna go to every nook and corner of the world.
  • I love penguins :) 
  • I don't really care what I wear. I am too lazy but sometimes, I do love to dress up.
  • I get a lot of headaches. Why I mentioned that? I am having one right now :(

Friday, April 20, 2012

7 things I would really like to spend on?

Whenever I see huge haul posts, I really feel, like doing a big haul for myself!!! But, then, I remember that I am on a saving spree so I always console myself by saying that someday I will buy everything!! Ok, that's kinda weird, I know, but I can't really afford to spend right now. I am saving for something very special :) Its my dad's 60th birthday this year and I wanna throw a huge party. So, that's our li'l secret ;D

So, one day I was just TP'ing (time pass) and was compiling a list of thing I would actually like to spend on coz it's highly unlikely that I'll have an endless supply of money. And, I came up with the following things.

Sunscreens 
Already, I am using pretty expensive sunscreens. Neutrogena is around 500 for a small 88ml tube and my fav Marie Veronique Organics is 2000 bucks!!! But, then, sun protection ranks pretty high on my list as I always get some or the other skin issue, now and then, because of sun exposure.

Hair Care
The second on my list is any hair care product which would be effective and would catch my eye and would be organic and environment-friendly as well. And, I do agree that I am a little obsessed with my hair. So, going for that expensive hair treatments probably weekly or monthly :) Already I am making use of one of the hair treatments which I am going to talk about soon and I just hope it works out :)

Lingerie
Yes, I don't mind spending on the them at all. In fact, I always try to go for the best of the brands because they last long and their quality is better and they give a better fit :) And, that's something I try not to compromise on.

Stoles and Scarves
Third on my list are a plethora of colorful and fun stoles. They are so easy to add color to any ensemble. And, very useful for all seasons too. Thrift shopping is good for it.

Wallets and Bags
A statement bag is very important with any outfit. And, I do like to have a bag with myself all the time. And, I really need a good wallet too. So, I am currently in search for it. I want something in a vibrant color or may be something pastel (that's so in these days).

Shoes
I am a flat-heeled person but I do like comfortable shoes and slippers. And, I don't really mind spending on quality shoes and footwear. That's very important for the feet in the long run. And, I wanna have a huge collection of really colourful and fun flip flops!!!

Watches
I lost my watch couple of yeras back (one or two around) and since then, I have become timeless :D I want a really decent watch for which I am ready to spend. I am lusting for something in metal, may be silver or rhodium or white gold but I don't want gold. I don't like the color of gold at all!!

What do you like spending on?

Thursday, April 19, 2012

My special surprise to my parents!!!

Aloha Delhi!!! Yes, I landed in Delhi so suddenly that even I haven't yet absorbed the reality after two nights here. So, how did that come about? My professor is out of country and my colleague is off to a conference for about a week and I had been dying to visit my parents since two months. So, all the circumstances culminated in my booking a ticket to Delhi immediately for the next day!!! I thoguht it would be a nice surprise to see the shocked faces of mom and dad when I'll be at the door :D

I have been staying for 9 years away and the time has increased my longing and respect for the place called 'home'. I always prepare a list of my most-wanted dishes to be prepared (my needs keep on changing) whenever I am to go home. Dad starts making plans for our outings and weekend trips, if any. We are a family of 3 and we have always been travel-loving. Earlier, we used to have a yearly road trip for a family vacation. Since the years I have been away, they have reduced a bit but we always make time for it.

So, while on the flight, I couldn't stop smiling anticipating the reaction of mom and dad. They have recently shifted to Delhi so I didn't even know the way to home. I have an decent idea of Delhi and had the address on hand so was quite confident that I would reach home without any mishaps. So, as soon as I landed in Delhi, I took a metro to New Delhi and then, further to Saket. Finally, an auto did get me to the locality. But, you wouldn't believe it, when I reached home, it wasn't mine :D And, I realised that I had got the house number wrong!!! 

I immediately gave a call to mom on her mobile. No answer. On Landline. No answer. Again!! No answer. I called up Dad. No answer. Again, I tried home. No answer. Again!! And, finally, mom lifted. And, on the pretext of asking the address for a courier issue, I got the correct house number. Thankfully, I was in the right area so I didn't really have to walk a lot. Did a bit of asking and there I was home, sweet home :) It's really weird how one can sense if a place is home or not.

And, there was mom. Mom is not the hugging types, you know!! But, of course, I could see the surprise and the happiness she was trying to keep away from showing :D And, then, I had upma and poha prepared by mom. The flight had nothing more than a sandwich to offer :( I was starving!! Aaahhh, it was heaven to eat home food after so long. And, now half of the surprise was still pending. My dad wasn't yet aware, right? And, I asked mom not to tell him. 

So, my dad comes up @ 6:30 something and he was really tired and sleepy. So, when I did booooo (you know hiding behind the door and scaring a person), he was really startled and went into a shock :D He couldn't digest the fact that I was really there for quite long!!! And, I couldn't stop laughing. So, that was my surprise which was long-pending. I had dreamt of this for years together but things never worked out. But, I finally did it!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Beauty Formulas Heat & Cleanse Clay Mask {Product Review}

Price: Rs 175 for one package which includes 3 treatments

Ingredients

Pros
- is deep cleansing mask
- cleans the pores well
- relaxing for the skin because of its self-heating properties

Cons
- definitely expensive!!! 
- I wish self-heating stays for longer

My Experience
I found this at one of the New U shelves and it intrigued me so much that I picked it up. There were other packs also from Beauty Formulas which are worth a try, I suppose!! One of things which attracted me was the ingredient Zeolite which is the second on the list. Zeolite is a mineral and a type of clay like multani mitti. It occurs in many types and most used for water purification. It is also used in body detoxification. 
The product has 3 separate pouches. It is white in color with small blue beads which I am supposing are jojoba beads. The product has to be applied on wet face as water activates the heat in the mask. It goes like a completely transparent gel on to the skin and heats up immediately. The heat is like a really warm towel placed on your face and feels very relaxing.

Its supposed to be kept for 60 seconds but I generally keep it for 10 minutes. The product in a single packet is actually more than you can use at one time but its not storage-friendly so you have to use it at one go. So, I use it on my neck too but it can cover still more than that!!! Results? My skin feels cleansed and my pores look smaller afterwards. It didn't remove all my blackheads though!!! But, overall, I really liked the mask and its worth a try. 

Have you tried this product?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Sunscreen and Myths {Skin Care}

[Source:healthmeup.com]
One of the reasons why I am doing many posts on sunscreen again is to raise the awareness that it is an important part of skin care routine. Today, I shall be talking about some of the myths concerning sunscreens. Hope this helps clear some of your doubts.

Myth: Sunblocks are better than Sunscreens
There is no such thing as sunblock and I have mentioned this in one of earlier posts too. Earlier, physical sunscreens (which include Zinc Oxide or Titanium Dioxide) were called sunblocks as they scatter or reflect the sun's rays when they fall int he skin as opposed to being absorbed and converted into heat energy which happens in case of using chemical sunscreens. 

But, now, FDA (Food and Drug Administration), US has passed out certain rules regarding the labelling of sunscreens in which it has banned the use of certain terms "sweat-proof, water-proof, sunblock, dermatologist tested" as they are misleading. I know these rules are not applicable on Indian products but it at least shows that these terms do not really mean anything. 

Even the labels of spf 70, spf 90, spf 100 have been banned. If a sunscreen provides higher protection, it should be labelled as spf 50+. You can see Neutrogena following these labelling standards to get an idea.  
""Waterproof," "sweatproof" or "sunblock" claims. Manufacturers cannot label sunscreens as "waterproof" or "sweatproof," or identify their products as "sunblocks," because these claims overstate their effectiveness. Sunscreens also cannot claim to provide sun protection for more than 2 hours without reapplication or to provide protection immediately after application (for example-- "instant protection") without submitting data to support these claims and obtaining FDA approval. (Source)"
Myth: SPF 100 gives me better protection than SPF 50
Spf 15 filters out 93% sun's rays, spf 30 filters out 96.4% sun's rays and spf 50 filters out 97.6% (near abouts). And, any spf higher than 50 gives only a marginal increase but there is no sunscreen which can filter out 100% sun's rays. For Indian climate, spf 30 is enough but if you are over-inclined, spf 50 is good. Anything higher is a false claim.

Myth: Layering of products with sunscreen will give me enough protection
I have talked of this issue earlier that spf's of various products do not add up!!! They all act as a single layer of sunscreen and provide the protection of the highest spf factor.

Myth: I don't need a sunscreen when indoors
UVA rays can penetrate through windows and glass. Read this post for more information about them. So, you need at least an spf 15 when staying indoors.

Myth: A drop of my new sunscreen keeps my face protected.
As a rule, you should apply one teaspoon or two fingers length of sunscreen to your face and neck. And, I know that's a lot. But, if you do not apply the said amount, the efficacy of your sunscreen is reduced according to the amount applied. So, even if you are using a spf 50 sunscreen, improper application might be giving you benefits of only spf 10 or 20. So, apply proper amount of sunscreen to protect yourself well.

These are some of the myths I have come across in my course of blogging, the top most being the confusion between sunscreen and sunblock. I hope this post helps to debunk those myths.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Do layers of sunscreens help? {Skin Care}

[Source:faithfulprovisions.com]
The first rule of applying sunscreen - The spf's of various products don't add up!!! If you are applying a moisturiser with spf, say x, then a sunscreen / foundation / BB cream with spf, say y, and then finish off with a mineral compact which again provides some spf, say z, factor, you can't say that the sum total of your sun protection factor is spf x+y+z.

But, something else bothers me in this rule!!! Well, when we have layers of product with spf factors, x, y or z, which spf does apply on the skin - x, y or z? Or, does it work like a filtering mechanism? Meaning, if supposing the top layer has spf of z, those many rays are allowed to pass (remember even 50 spf allows 2% sun rays to pass through, it provides around 98% protection!!). And, then, the next product spf, which is y, again filters out the rays according to its strength and so on!! 

Does that happen at all? Well. logically speaking, it does seem quite probable but I don't know how much of that really applies in practice. Would be great if some sunscreen expert can answer such questions!!! What are your thoughts on it?

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Did you know about the poisonous foods you might be eating? {Health}

Check out the video. Its really informative and talks about 10 most poisonous foods we might be consuming unknowingly and which are extremely harmful for out health.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Tagged Yet Again!!!

So, thanks to Tanmayee from Celebrating Feminity, I have again been tagged :) So, check out my answers!!!

Q. What is your most inexpensive beauty product you love and why?

Lactocalamine is what's coming to my mind right now. I use it when I am staying indoors for sun protection. 

Q. What is your most expensive beauty product you love and why? 

Marie Veronique Organics Face Screen. Its a tinted sunscreen with Zinc Oxide and is amazing!! But, it costs 40$ and that's excluding the shipping charges.

Q. Which beauty product you have love and hate relationship with? Name it.

TBS brand as a whole. I don't like the body butter I got recently but I really love the accessories I got from TBS and also the oil.

Q. What is your most delicious beauty product?

TBS Polynesian Monoi Oil. It smells amazing!!! Has light jasmine scent which I absolutely love and the fragrance doesn't disappear soon either. 

Q. Which product do you neglect due to laziness?

Masks, it is!!! When I feel lazy, I simply ignore them and take huge pains to finish my CTM routine only :( Yes, I am pretty lazy. 

Q. What beauty product makes you feel confident?

There is no product on which I depend for confidence but if I have to choose, I would say kajal. Because, it makes my eyes look very beautiful.

Q. What traits you find attractive in opposite sex?

Self-made and one who has respect for everyone.

Q. What items you would like to receive as a gift?

Do I really need to tell? Well, almost everything from books and flowers to accessories and beauty products!! Better still, take me with you :D

Friday, April 13, 2012

Do you endorse any brand? {Your Opinion}

[Source:brandingrevolution.com]
Granted, no one is gonna ask me to be a brand ambassador of any brand, what so ever but I often find myself faithful to some brands to the extent that I might be doing small inline commercials in my day to day life just like it happens in "The Truman Show". [If you haven't watched it yet, you should definitely check it out. Its probably Jim Carrey's only movie in which you can't see his extra-mobile face moving and btw, its an amazing movie.]

So, yes, I endorse different brands for different reasons. For example, when it comes to skin care, whatever product I might be using, Nivea is the first name which pops up in my mind!!! Then, when it comes to hand washes, I am totally loyal to Dettol and I so hate Lifebuoy (and I have never ever even used it)!!! Similarly, when it comes to pickles, you would find me saying Priya all the time or even a discontinued line of Sanjeev Kapoor's endorsed products, don't remember the name though!! When it comes to knives, its Crystal for me and the truth is I don't know of any other brand :D Such is my affinity to certain brands.

Are you similarly crazed on any brand?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Are you keeping track of UV Index? {Sunscreen}

[Source:thegolfforecast.com]
What's a UV Index? 
It's the measure of strength of sun's UV radiation. Its just like a weather forecast and tells you if you need to cover up from the sun or not. This measure has been standardised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) so its a reliable measure.
UV Index Table (Source)
How to check the UV index?
You can always google it for your own city. Another source is weatheronline.co.uk. I found it while doing the googling myself :D And, the UV index of Hyderabad for April 12 to April 15 is 12 (Source). Who would think with the weather out there (its cloudy and rainy these days) that the UV index and radiation would be so high??? So, Hyderabadis, apply proper amount of sunscreen and don't venture outside in the noon unless absolutely necessary!!!

PS: If you find the post useful, please don't forget to share it with your friends and family. Its a health issue which everyone should be aware of.

More posts from sunscreen diaries:
Zinc Oxide vs Titanium Dioxide
Is my sunscreen working?
Surfaces and Radiations
What are UV Radiations?
What Sunscreen should I buy?
Sunscreen Ingredients
Use sunscreen 365 days a year
How much sunscreen do you apply?
Sunscreen: Role in anti-aging Skin Care

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Home Remedies for Hair Growth {DIY}

[Source:she.sulekha.com]
Yesterday, I talked about some of the tips to start taking care of your hair. And, I had said that I shall share some of the home remedies which have helped my hair tremendously in certain number of years. So, lets start on. 

Fenugreek Seeds
[Source:asia.ru]
Yes, the methi or fenugreek seeds about which I talked almost when I started my blog. That was one remedy which helped my hair fall and I guess it did help in a little in improving the hair texture but since I am so lazy, I had discontinued the remedy. I guess its time to start again!!

Egg
As always, I swear by this remedy. Applying egg on my hair weekly has helped my hair a lot and if not in hair growth, it has definitely helped to keep my hair soft, silky and shiny and strong too. But, the downside of the remedy is the smell which even I can't bear so I have not used egg on my hair since quite long.

Yogurt
This was advised to me by one of my friends who was advised by an acquaintance. The said acquaintance used to douse her hair in yogurt everyday and wash it off (not shampoo but only plain water rinse) and used to shampoo her hair once a week. This was the routine in vacations but I do admit that she must have smelt bad!!! But, the remedy and the hard work paid off and her tresses were very beautiful and long. 

Well, I did use the remedy and not quite in the same way but I used to keep curd / yogurt in my hair for 1-4 hours a stretch and wash it off with a shampoo. Over a period of time, my hair texture did improve a lot. And, here I am guessing, that it did improve my hair volume too. But, I am not quite sure on that count.

[Source:beautythroughstrength.com]
Onion Juice
This is something I swear by again and it is one of the top rated of my posts in all time. I know!!! And, yes, onion juice helps a lot in hair growth itself. But, yes, it gives a very foul smell which is why I get discouraged to use the remedy but the results are too obvious. 

The reason why onion works is because of its richness in sulphur, one of the main minerals required for hair growth.  don't know if it will cover a bald spot but yes, it will definitely revive the hair follicles if they have been dormant too long. A very difficult remedy to use, though :(
[Source:boston.com]

Tomato
Again, one of my few first posts on the blog, it had helped to restore my sunburnt and extremely damaged hair to a decent condition. Tomato gives a lot of shine to the hair and also helps with dandruff as it is a little acidic but not as acidic as lemon to leave the hair entirely dry!!!

These are the remedies which have helped my hair a lot overtime. 

PS: Read a status message on FB: 
"Be with a man who ruins your lipstick, not your Mascara!!
What say?? :D

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

How to start caring for your hair? {Hair Care}

[Source:happynews.com]
Ok, weird title!!! I know. Actually, what happened was that I had ignored my hair for too long and got horrible case of split ends because of which I was so angry that I chopped off a good length of my hair and now, my hair is back to the shoulder level. Now, I am trying to improve my hair health and grow them out.

So, I thought I would revisit the basics. So, in one way, you can say that this post is for my benefit instead of yours :P I shall try to include as many things as possible in this. And, I do get a lot of queries regarding hair care and hair loss so guess, next time, I can simply point to this link :D Ok, let's get started.

Moisturise the hair regularly
As I talked about in my hair diaries, I got cocoa butter for myself last month. I wanted to use it to as a hair mask because last year, the Lush Caca Noir really softened my hair a lot. And, I'm making it a point to not skip on the conditioner ever. 

Get a good hydrating conditioner as well which doesn't weigh the hair down. Ok, I can't recommend anything because I am on the search still but I remember that Biotique Watercress did very well for me so I might just get that.

Weekly hair conditioning is very important but don't forget to do the lighter conditioning every time you wash your hair.

Use good comb
I can't stress this enough coz I know how much the condition of my hair has improved since I switched to the TBS Wooden Comb. It really keeps my hair happy. Or, get any wide-toothed comb for yourself.

Scalp Care
Yes, very important. Try to massage the scalp everyday. That helps with hair growth and is relaxing as well. Also, if you feel your hair is not behaving, I would suggest to go for a hair wash immediately. Don't forget to get a gentle shampoo as it will keep your scalp in a good condition. 

Use satin pillow covers
The cotton ones suck all the moisture from hair and also increase the static in your hair so get the satin pillow covers or silk is even better!!! Make sure that you change the pillow covers regularly too to keep away the bacteria and the oils on the pillow cover from the face.

Oil lightly before washing
Even if you are not big on oiling your hair and I can understand that in summers but it helps a lot. So, to make a compromise, try coating your hair lightly with oil just half hour  to an hour before washing your hair. That really helps. 

These are some of the tips I am following regularly. And, next time, I shall talk about few remedies which were helpful in my hair growth.

Monday, April 9, 2012

How to choose right pair of glasses for your face?

I hope you liked this cartoon :D
So, you wear glasses??? I have been wearing them since around 18 years!!! Wow...sounds like a huge time and I do have a high power also. So, you can say that I have tried on a lot of spectacles from the big rounded ones which used to come in the 90's to the trendier ones which are coming now. 

A frame can make your look or make you look dowdy as well. So, always be careful when you choose your frame and make sure you take someone with you whose taste you well approve of or better, who has a better taste than you :D So, let me share some pointers in choosing the right frame. Ok, before starting, I want to say that since I have round face, I shall be referring to it in the post.

Your face shape
Of course, the most important. You want your glasses to flatter your face shape. Since, we are only talking of round face here, we will take that into consideration. But, I am sure that the pointers I am going to discuss will apply to all shapes. 
Always choose contrasting shape of glasses as compared to your face shape. That give an illusion of different face shape. 
For round face, a square or rectangular with sharp edges instead of blunt edges works really well.

Size of your face or features
The size of your frame should be consistent with the size of your face or your face will look very huge and fat. Also, the size should be consistent with the eye size. If you have small eyes, get a small frame where as for big eyes, make sure, the frame suits well. 
[Source: eyespyoptical.com]
Facial Features
A round face has more rounded features and very few angles or sharpness. So, you want to get a frame which gives an illusion of sharpness to the face. 
Make your features stand out. Get the frame which contrasts with the sharpness or roundedness of features on your face.
Similarly, you want your glasses to contrast with the face length. In a round face, the face is too full, using round frames would make it look even fuller and fat. Where as, getting sharp-edged rectangular or square frames or asymmetrical frames also look good as they highlight the facial features.

Proportions of the frame
You want to check out the width and depth of the frame as well. Proper proportions will highlight the face. 
For round face, a more wider frame with lesser depth is better. A complete square is a big no-no. Similarly, you don't want the arms of the glasses to be thin. Thicker arms draw attention to the upper part of the face. 

Summary of the post
So, before you are choosing your pair of glasses, check out the following:
  • your face shape
  • your features are rounded or sharp
  • length of your face and the width
  • length and width of the frame
Hope this helps you choose nice glasses for yourself next time :)

    Sunday, April 8, 2012

    Omved All Skin Types Ubtan {Product Review}

    Price: Rs 120 for 50 gms

    Ingredients
    moong dal (24%), urad dal (24%), red sandalwood (24%), white sandalwood (24%), turmeric (4%)

    Pros
    - cleanses the face really well
    - acts as an exfoliant and a cleanser both at the same time
    - can be mixed with water, rose water, fruit juices, milk or anything we want to treat our skin to

    Cons
    - I really wish it came in a jar packaging. Make the storage easier otherwise you have to search it for yourself.

    My Experience
    This is brick red in color and smells heavily of red sandalwood. Frankly, I am not a fan of sandalwood fragrance which is a huge con for me. But, its not that huge an obstacle. I have loved using ubtans since long and they are one of the most ancient remedies we all swear by. Its availability in the market just makes it easier for us to get them and not undergo the huge process of making one at home which does involve some work. But, we can always add some of our own ingredients to this product and store it.
    So, how do I use it? I simply wet my face and fingers and take some of the powder on the fingers and apply it lightly on the face and rub it. When needed, scoop more of the powder and use it. Its better for me as I am lazy to mix it in another container but you can always take a table spoon or half and mix it with some liquid to make a paste and apply on the face as a mask. Keep it for two-three minutes and gently scrub it off and wash.

    It cleanses really well as all the ubtans do and the green gram dal is amazing at that. It is supposed to be helpful for tanning as well but since I have used the product on and off and not very regularly, I did not see any of those effects. The skin does glow and look supple and hydrated afterward which is something I really like. So, overall, the product does look interesting. It does last long enough but I guess it is a bit expensive for the quantity.

    PS: Product sent by brand.
    PS1: I have used the photos with prior permission from Tapaswini's blog "Beauty through my eyes". And, do check out her review of the same product :)

    Other products from Omved:

    Saturday, April 7, 2012

    Yipppeeeeeeee!!!

    Ok, so I was just pondering on what I would write for this weekend. I had thought that putting up a gossip post would be easier but seriously, you really have to work out a theme for that too. Can you imagine how hard blogging can be sometimes ;D 

    So, there comes a mail which made my face lit up like a thousand watts bulb. So, I won the Kiehl's giveaway at Ankita's blog and it made me go yipeeeeee :) I have so wanted to try Kiehl's since ages and couldn't buy them because of lack of stores earlier and then, I couldn't go shopping whenever I was in Delhi but now, I have a super nice excuse. 

    And, I do have a huge shopping list. Thrift shopping, Delhi is famous for that and I so wanna do it. And, if everything goes well, the shopping list is just gonna go bigger :D Yeah, I will reveal the details in good time. And, so, what are you gonna do this weekend????

    Friday, April 6, 2012

    Keisha Cosmetics Vitamin E Range {Product Review}

    Cleansing Toner
    Just like the cocoa butter range, the toner is hydrating and is entirely like water. But, it has "Alcohol" as the second ingredient. The toner looks more like an astringent and is a little bluish in color. It has Vitamin E but its not natural vitamin E. 

    Perfect Glow Serum
    It is a white colored serum and is light in consistency. It spreads easily on the skin and lightens up the skin immediately but not as much as the Cocoa butter range. Its more on the moisturizing side than the skin lightening which is good for me. And, it is perfect for use in summers.

    Perfect Glow Cream
    It is again a little thick but less thicker than the Cocoa Butter Range and can be used on the body too. It keeps the skin nicely moisturized and hydrated.  But, has "Dimethicone" in it.

    Perfect Glow Glycerin
    It is a little blue in color just like the toner and can be used in various ways like I have said in the Cocoa Butter post. It is not as heavy as the Cocoa Butter range but is equally moisturizing and keeps the skin soft and dewy as opposed to glowing.

    Perfect Glow Body Milk
    Since I recieved the sample, I can't say much about it. But, it has "Dimethicone" which does bother me. 

    Massage Oil
    It has "Cyclomethicone" but its first ingredient is "Sunflower Oil" which is really good for skin. The oil spreads easily on the skin and is not sticky at all. It gets washed off easily too so no pains there. And, it does make the skin glow.

    Perfect Glow Soap
    The first reaction when I saw the soap was that it is so huge!! How am I ever gonna complete it? But, it is a nice soap and lathers well and cleanses the skin well. It doesn't really stretch out the skin and leave it dry.

    Overall Experience
    I have noticed that all the product ranges of Keisha have almost same ingredients except for the core which changes according to their range - Cocoa Butter, Vitamin E, Vitamin C and Carrot. And, the reason why I am reviewing the entire range together is because all of these are complimentary with each other and have the same ingredients in more or less a different order.

    Availability

    PS: Product sent by the brand.

    Also read: 

    Blog Banner

    Hey Everyone!!! 
    I finally made the blog banner today. I have been trying to do it since ages but I wasn't really satisfied and I like what I did today. So, displaying the new banner and do let me know if you like it or you would prefer some changes!!! 
    Thanks a lot, guys gals :)
    Love,
    Swati

    Thursday, April 5, 2012

    Brown Rice vs White Rice {Health}

    [Source: hindu.com]
    Which rice do you like: Brown or White? Two years back, when I actually came across brown rice, I had done some digging up on its benefits which you can read here. Since then, I have had brown rice on and off with the white rice. And, in the starting, I did really find it a little weird in taste and texture but slowly I got used to it and now I actually prefer brown over white.

    What's Brown Rice?
    For those who never had brown rice, it is the least processed rice and is brown in color. The reason is that the cover of the rice which is a fibre is not removed. That ensures that all its nutritional value is preserved when compared to white rice.

    White rice undergoes a lot of processing and polishing which removes majority of its nutritional value and instead makes it harmful for consumption. Look at the figure for the comparison.

    White Rice leads to Diabetes
    “Higher consumption of white rice is associated with a significantly increased risk of Type 2 diabetes, especially in Asian (China and Japan) populations,” wrote the authors from the Harvard School of Public Health, Boston. White rice primarily contains starch, as the polishing removes most of the nutrients found in the bran such as insoluble fibre, magnesium, vitamins, and lignans (a group of chemical compounds acting as antioxidants). Insoluble fibre and magnesium, for instance, have been found to lower the risk of Type II diabetes. Unlike brown rice, polished rice has a high glycaemic index (an indicator of glucose-raising effect of a food) and is a major contributor of dietary glycaemic load. Higher dietary glycaemic load is generally associated with the increased risk of diabetes. Hence, the harmful effects of polishing are two-pronged — it removes the nutrients that would cut the risk of diabetes and at the same time pushes up the glycaemic index, thus increasing the risk of the disease. [Source]
    So, do you like your rice white or brown?
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