Reviews: The Body Shop Wild Argan Oil line, Maybelline Dream Pure BB Cream and Smittens facial cleansing gloves

19 Sep

Early this week The Body Shop launched a hotly anticipated new line – Wild Argan Oil – to help you get your Moroccan hammam on at home. While all the usual suspects are there – a shower gel, body butter and scrub – the range also includes a few interestingly l’il extras, namely a massage soap (R40), a solid oil for your lips (R60), another for your bod and hair (R110) and, of course, the Radiant Oil for body and hair (R220).

Pretty packaging, right?

Pretty packaging, right?

Everything in the line’s infused with hydrating Community Fair Trade argan oil from Morocco and has the same soft, pretty scent. The best way to describe it would be a little nutty with the teensiest dash of something sweet, possibly sugared almonds. Or maybe marzipan. I reckon anyone who appreciates TBS’s Almond or Shea Butter or Brazil Nut line will like this one too.

Going clockwise you're looking at the oil, the solid body oil, the scrub and body butter.

How kak does my pic look by comparison to The Body Shop’s? This is why I hate mixing PR pics with my own. Going clockwise, you’re looking at the oil, the solid body and hair oil, the scrub and body butter.

Of everything I’ve tried, I most like the scrub. It’s one of The Body Shop’s grainier, more effective ones. I also like the oil itself. Being a dry oil, it sinks in fast yet leaves your skin feeling supple with a healthy-looking glow. I’ll definitely be slapping it on legs and arms this summer. I’ve become a bit of a freak for oils lately and have been favouriting them over body lotions which now just seem sad and boring, kind of like the sitcoms we used to watch back in the day when you compare them to the killer TV series being churned out right now. Can you believe how much of your life you wasted watching Three’s Company? Sjoe! And is anyone else counting the days until American Horror Story: Freak Show starts airing on Hulu? Errrmigod!

Moving on… Maybelline’s launched yet another BB – Dream Pure BB cream (R99,95) for oily, spot prone skin. Available in three shades, it contains 2% salicylic acid to help exfoliate deep inside your pores, keeping them clean and clear.

Light on the left and Dark on the right.

Light on the left and Dark on the right; swatches top right and the Dark shade blended into my arm on the bottom right.

Being an oily-combo girl I was keen to give this a bash and found it to be rather nice. As it’s super duper sheer, it’s not going to cover anything, but this means you can go a shade darker than you’d usually choose and use it like a tint. As it’s less ‘creamy’ than Maybelline and Garnier’s other BB’s, you need to apply it on top of another moisturiser so that you’ve got a little ‘slip’ to smooth it around your face, so it’s not really a tinted moisturiser (which, if we’re honest, is what most drug store BB creams are) – its more of an incredibly sheer foundation. I liked that, once on, it stayed put, didn’t oxidise nor encourage any oilies or excessive dewiness. In short, it’s a nice pick for anyone looking for a hint of a tint with added blemish prevention benefits.

Last but not least, let’s talk about Smittens (R100, and more stockists listed on their Facebook page).


How much do we love my super macro close up?

A million years ago I reviewed Jane Iredale’s Magic Mitt and was really impressed. Essentially, it’s a micro fibre mitten that removes every trace of make-up without the need for cleanser due to the way it’s woven which kind of gives your skin an incredibly gentle yet effective microdermabrasion session every time you use it. The only negative I could think of in regards to Jane’s mitt was the price point. Her goodies are great, but they don’t come cheap. So, Ive been thrilled to discover Smittens. They’re pretty much a dupe for the Magic Mitt in that they do the exact same thing but, as they’re proudly South African, they’re almost half the price.

For those of you who’ve never heard of or used a micro fibre cleansing mitt before, let me clap your biggest questions. Yes, it does remove make-up, dirt and oil without leaving your face feeling stripped. Yes, it even takes off waterproof mascara. And yes, I know you don’t believe me. You’re sitting there thinking there’s no way my face can be clean or feel clean with just a little water and a fancy cloth but just trust me on this one. These babies really are quite magical. If you’re a jaded beauty junkie who’s seen it all but yet to try one, add a Smittens to your shopping list. Also, if you’ve got a ‘girl who has everything’ in your friendship circle, you can add ‘em to that super short list of things so probably won’t own already and is guaranteed to be impressed with.

Love, love


Trust me when I say you really want a Nederburg Premier food-friendly five-pack

18 Sep

Last week I was thrilled to receive Nederburg Premiere’s new food-friendly five-pack of reds, created to celebrate the run of MasterChef South Africa. Apparently it’s airing every Thursday on M-Net at 7:30pm until 18 December. I say ‘apparently’ ‘cos I’ve got a li’l confession to make…

I’m currently working as a script writer on two TV shows – Hayden Quinn South Africa and Win A Home on SABC 3. I’m also filling in at Top Billing this weekend while their regular dude is away so right now I’m pretty much consumed by TV, TV, TV… But here’s the kicker – I don’t actually own one so I never watch it. In fact, I haven’t even seen the final cut of any of my shows save for the premiere epi of Hayden Quinn. Eeep!

So, ja. I can’t really comment on MasterChef South Africa as I’ve yet to catch it. Still, I do like wine – very, very much – so this press drop totally made my week.

Newest beauty1

Nice one Nederburg… very, very nice….

Each pakkie kkie comes with five Nederburg Winemaster’s Reserve vinos – a Cab Sav, Shiraz, Pinotage, Merlot and Edelrood (a Cab Sav-Merlot Blend) as well as two mooi rooi Le Creuset ramekins. The best bit? The whole shebang is only R300! That’s crazy good value chicas. I mean, for heaven’s sake, the bloody ramekins are worth R150 alone. Nederburg might as well just give their wine away.

Nederburg reckons their Edelrood

Nederburg reckons their Edelrood, which has berry, mocha and vanilla tones, goes well with casseroles so I paired it with my neighbours Thai green curry and threw my famous Peppermint Crisp tart into the mix.

I’m now seriously considering buying two more boxes ‘cos then I’ll have a matching set of six ramekins (and the OCD-riddled part of my psyche can rest at ease) plus ten more bottles of wine to crack open at all the braais and dinner parties I’ll be attending this summer. (Although, if my friends’ partytjies are anything to go by, we’ll easily smash a box in just one sitting.)

Anyway, my point is this – MasterChef fan or not, Nederburg’s new food-friendly five pack is a helluva good deal, whether you’re buying it for yourself or as a gift for someone else.

Love, love


TanOrganic Tan Trilogy ‘try me’ kit review: Their original self-tan and OilArganic dry oil are totally awesome

16 Sep

TanOrganic is a new self-tan line – well, new to SA, anyway, it’s been going strong in Ireland for a while now. It’s claim to fame is the fact that it’s the world’s first and only Eco-certified self-tanning brand and made using 99,6% natural ingredients, some of which are organic. It also promises to offer the perfect fade due to ‘nourishing moisturising qualities’ and doesn’t have that typical, old school self-tan smell.

I was given the Tan Trilogy kit (R599, to try which includes an exfoliating glove, self-tan mitt, TanOrganic self-tan and an Oil Arganic moisturising dry oil.


You can work out which is which by yourself, right?

The very first thing I tried was the oil and I’ve fallen crazy in love – using it regardless of whether I’m attempting to hydrate a self-tan or not. It’s made from an array of natural oils including olive, orange peel, argan, jojoba, avo and what not and sinks into your skin in a flash, leaving it feeling supple and ‘happy’. But the best bit is the smell! To me, it smells like red grapefruit, even though there isn’t any in the mix. In a way, it reminds me a lot of Mama Mio’s clean, citrusy ‘Gravitas’ scent. While I have several dry oils at home, including the Nuxe one French people are always gaaning aan about, this one kicks all their asses.

But ja, let’s chat about the self-tan. It’s a runny, bronze tinted fluid that’s a lot like Clarins’ Instant Bronze self-tanning tint. (I love the tint as I’m the type of person who really wants to know if she’s missed a spot.) If you sniff it from the bottle you can pick up a warm, slightly caramel-esque scent but when it’s on your skin it’s odourless and stays that way, regardless of which stage of ‘development’ you’re at.

To show you the colour result, I put two coats on my left arm and one on my right. And nooo, I’m not naked, I’m wearing a bikini, okay? Probably not the cleverest styling solution but I’m too busy and stressed out right now for a re-shoot.

Latest blog shizz2

Right, you’re looking at two coats on the left and one coat on the right. The top shots are in natural light and the bottom are with flash. Clicking on this piccie will enlarge it. Then you can revel in my seriyas whiteness.

As you can see, the colour result is incredibly natural-looking and even, even at two coats which is my favourite way to wear it. It’s been four days since I took these shots and while the single coat patch has faded a tad, the two coat arm looks exactly the same as it did the morning I took off the top coat. I’m trying to think of another self-tanner I’ve used that’s lasted just as long or longer but none are coming to mind.

In all, this is seriously impressive stuff and now, their large bottle of TanOrganic Orginal self-tan (R419), has joined the list of self-tanners I’ll happily spend my own money on*. Nice one TanOrganic! Very, very nice!

Love, love


*FYI, it reads like this in no particular order: Famous Dave’s Gold Edition tanning mousse, Xen-Tan Mousse Intense, St Tropez Self-Tan Bronzing mousse (if I want something a little lighter than the others, it also looks great on your face) and Model Co tan mousse. Clearly, I have a serious thing for mousse…

A closer look at Essie’s new spring nail colours (2014)

15 Sep

When it comes to ‘salon’ nail colours, Essie will always be my favourite. It totally pains me (in the ass) that you can’t buy the brand in Sorbet anymore – just that streaky, overpriced Morgan Taylor kak. Fortunately, you can still snap it up in Clicks and Dis-Chem which I suppose is okay ‘cos I feel like I spend half my life in those two stores anyway.

But ja. Let’s take a look shall we?

From left to right:

From left to right: Truth or Flare, Hide & Go Chic, Fashion Playground, Spin the Bottle and Romper Room.

The above shot is a pretty accurate colour reflection, save for Hide & Go Chic. This shot makes it look like it’s a bright, sunny kinda blue but its actually a bit more medium-to-dark teal-looking, possibly the only colour that actually feels a bit more ‘autumn’ to me.

As for the two paler shades, we all know they’re going to fly off the shelves. Both are ideal for creating clean-looking, nude manis and maybe even a French one if you’re still livin’ it up in the 90s, possibly cruising around in a Ford Fiesta, blaring The Corrs ‘Talk on Corners’ album on repeat…

But ja, getting back to the kleure, let’s talk about the mooiest of them all – Fashion Playground. When I first saw it I was all ‘Oh really? Mint Candy Apple all over again, eh?’ and my feelings could best be described as ‘meh’. And then I slicked it on – a lot. It’s one of those shades that needs a good four coats to get where you want it to be but it’s totally worth the schlep – and then I was all ‘Ooooh! You and me are going to BBFs fo life, yo!’

Pretty, pretty!

Lovely, ne? For the record, Mint Candy Apple is more on the blue side, while Fashion Playground is more pistachio.

Every time I wear this colour, it attracts compliments like bees to honey and gives me that whole ‘fresh, spring has totally sprung’ feeling – just two reasons to love it. Also, I like that all it needs is a slick of Rimmel’s Nail Nurse top coat and BOOM – it wears like iron.

Want, want, want? Like I said, you’ll find these babies in Clicks an Dis-Chem going for R110 a pop.

Love, love


Oh yeah! Forever 21 finally opens in Canal Walk in Cape Town

11 Sep

Last night, after months and months of anticipation, I finally got to shop up a storm at the media launch Forever 21, the US fashion mega-chain that’s finally opening this Saturday in Canal Walk.

Forever21 launch Canal Walk Cape Town

Hashtag happy place! (FYI, clicking on my piccies will make them larger.)

Judging by all the questions that were fired at me via twitter and Instagram last night, there are things you girls want to know, so let’s jump right in with the big three.

So, just what exactly is in store?

Lots and lots of lekker ladies clothing, accessories, undies, swimwear, gymwear and shoes. Forever 21 do have a line for men, but it’s not available in SA. Neither is their plus size collection.

You should also know that the store is massive. Like huuuuge. Setting foot inside is like stepping into a Twilight Zone o’ Awesome in that you’ll easily lose an hour of your life before stumbling out with a mountain of yellow bags, muttering things like ‘Maybe I should’ve taken the silver one too…’ and ‘Who cares if I can’t buy groceries this week. These pretty li’l handsakkies are forever…’

That necklace was around R150, the mini Chanel-style sakkies are R249 and that anchor bracelet was just R15!

That necklace was around R150, the mini Chanel-style sakkies are R249 and that anchor bracelet was just R15!

The question on everybody’s lips – what are the prices like?

I was very flattered to be asked to get a pre-launch preview of a selection of clothes before the launch to create an outfit to show off on my blog. Sadly, this invite came at a time when I was almost paralysed by work so I wasn’t able to take the PRs up on it. Still, I envy-stalked the other girls who had and got super nervy when I looked at the prices some had listed on their blogs. R600 for a pair of shorts? R250 for a hat?

For those who don’t know, Forever21 is the Mr Price of America. If you shop their US store online as I’ve done in the past, you’ll know you can snap up a necklace for a dollar and a pair of jeans for seven. Their stuff is cheap as chips. So, like I said, when I saw those initial price points, I was super disappointed.

However, once I got in store, I quickly realised that yes, they do have a few things that I feel cost more than they’re worth but, for the most part, its bargains freakin’ galore, baby! We’re talking jeans for R150… cute li’l bracelets for R15 (!) and flirty summer dresses for R170. Quality-wise, I’d describe the brand as being superior to Mr P and mostly on par with Cotton On.

I think the kaftan/kimono thing-y was around R350,

I think the kaftan/kimono thing-y was around R350, not sure about the jumpsuit, the vest was about R170 and the shirt was R270.

In short, I now could never visit Canal Walk without making the store my number one stop and I don’t see myself ever leaving without making a purchase or three. I must’ve spent a good twenty minutes in just the accessory section alone! Also, as their stuff is pretty current (i.e. not last season’s stock), when it comes to the more expensive items, you could always compare the price of what’s here with what’s in their online store and snap up whatever costs less via the latter.

When does it open in Jozi?

Honestly, I really don’t know and it seems like neither does anyone else. At present, there aren’t any plans for a store to open anywhere else in South Africa but, if the Cape Town store turns out to be a pot of gold (and I’m sure it will), I’m quite sure they’d open up elsewhere. But ja, for now, us Slaapstadders have another reason besides our mountain for mense to want to come visit.

All these shoes were in the R400 - R500 zone.

All these shoes were in the R400 – R500 zone. The brushes and make-up bags where both just under R50 each.

So, if you want to check out the store yourself, know that it officially opens to the public this Saturday and they’ll be giving away gifts to the first 300 shoppers so get there early ‘cos I expect it’ll be a total mal huis. Alternatively, give it a week for the hype to die down a little (remember the crazy queues when Burger King opened in town?) but then still make a point of going early. Much like everyone’s favourite 24-hour Woolies Engen on Orange street, this is one of those stores that’s always going to pump.

Love, love



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