Quick Tip: Intensify Your Hair Mask

Heat is great for intensifying a hair mask. What I do is apply my mask to towel dried hair, put on a shower cap and then wrap a towel around my head. This traps the heat from your scalp and allows your mask to penetrate better. Sometimes, I will even hit the towel with my blow drier (on a lower heat) for a minute or two for even better results. I usually let the mask sit for about 20-30 minutes, and I do this if I am going to blow dry my hair, or if I don't want to leave the mask on over night.

NOTW, Fiery Red

I've been feeling a little 'blah' this week, and one of the easiest tricks for me to snap out of it is to paint my nails a really bright color.

Enter Love & Beauty By Forever21's Fiery Red nail polish. Fiery red is a great name for this. It's a bright, in-your-face, tomato red.

Essie Base coat+ 3 coats + Sally Hansen top coat
(please excuse my stubby fingernails. I had a bit of biting 'incident' this week) 

I'm not sure this is going to last the whole week, it's already chipping a little.

What shades are you wearing this week?

Love and kisses!

Review: Umberto Giannini Overnight Beauty Moisture Balm

Umberto Giannini Overnight Beauty Moisture Balm, 25 dirhams at Boots

Umberto Giannini Says:
A 'first of it's kind' night cream for the hair.The ultimate good hair day guarantee. Hydration is crucial for healthy looking hair so don't waste the opportunity of some twilight trichology! This light weight balm disappears on the hair and penetrates the hair shaft with hydrating repair. Like your favorite skin cream, once applied the only thing you see is the result.

I say:
I wasn't sure if I should try this or not, I have tried the overnight mask from their Spa Rituals range and it just left my hair feeling really dry and icky in the morning. But, I'm a sucker for pretty packaging and my hair has been really dry lately, plus it was really cheap so I bought it.

Despite the fact that this range is cheaper than the Spa Rituals range, I actually like this a lot more! I applied a tiny bit at night, concentrating on my ends. When I checked it in the morning, my ends felt really soft! I usually wash my hair every 2-3 days, and my hair is so dry that my ends tend to get all unruly by the second day or so. 

I've used the balm for two nights so far and I'm quite pleased with the results. It definitely doesn't provide the same results as a traditional hair mask, but it hydrates much more than my usual leave-in conditioner. And it's nice to not have to reapply leave-in conditioner and redo my hair in the morning! The balm is really thick and not watery at all, so it doesn't ruin my hair style or cause my hair to frizz. 

Even though it's so cheap, it should last a really long time because you only need to use a tiny amount. I will be using this a lot this winter as there isn't as much moisture in the air so my hair tends to dry out more.  

Have any of you tried this product? Are there any other overnight masks that you recommend?

NOT a MAC Haul :(

Mac released their A Tartan Tale collection over here, so I went to check it out. I really wanted a lipstick (I had some spare change left over from the week haha) but none of them looked good on me! I really liked The Faerie Glen and Cut a Caper, based on the swatches I've seen online. Unfortunately, they just looked too light and kind of ashy on me. I was so disappointed. I didn't really feel like I needed any of the shadows or blushes, so I walked out empty handed.

But then I walked into Accessorize and bought some jewelry.

I'm definitely a 'hoop girl', these were big and I like the slightly twisted detail.

How cute is that little crown?

Then I went into Boots and bought a scrub and a tube of Umberto Giannini Overnight Beauty Moisture Balm.

Reviews to be posted in the next few days :)

So I bought all of these for the price of one MAC lipstick (89 dhs, I think). Not too bad, but I really wanted a  LE lipstick. Oh well, the Marcel Wanders collection is coming out soon, maybe I'll find something in that.

Love and kisses!

Free International Shipping For Sigma Brushes

If you are looking to add to your brush collection, you HAVE to try the Sigma Brushes. They are currently taking the beauty world by storm. The brushes are often compared to MAC in terms of their look and quality, but at nearly half the price of MAC brushes.

And they are offering FREE international shipping for Black Friday today!

Use this code when you are checking out

If you happen to miss today's offer, check out laylam.ae. They sell Sigma brush kits in the UAE, but it's more expensive because of the shipping costs, plus they sell the brushes as a set, not individually. They also sell Coastal Scents, but I haven't calculated the prices yet to see if it works out better to just order them from the states and have them sent over. 

Let me know if you end up ordering some brushes. I'm ordering mine today, I can't wait to try them out!

Have a great weekend!
Love and kisses :)

This Sound Don't Break, Don't Make Me.

This video was filmed here in Dubai! We Have Band played at the Dubai Sound City music festival last year and they used footage for the video to this song. They were really fun, they played two gigs over here that weekend. I left the second one early, but afterwards they headed down to one of my friend's houses for an after party with everyone! I miss all the fun things :(

We Have Band - Honey Trap

A Thanksgiving Gift From Grazia!

I went to pick up some last minute things for our Thanksgiving dinner tonight and decided to pick up the new issue of Grazia Middle East.

This week's issue came with a free scarf from New Look!

I'm not gonna lie, I like free things :)

It wasn't actually a thanksgiving gift, it was to celebrate Grazia Middle East's 5th anniversary. That kind of makes me feel a little old :(

The scarf is really lightweight, which means you can also wear it when the weather starts to warm up. It's a pretty mix of different grays and array of different patterns. 

Here's a really cute way to wear a scarf, from modcloth.

They also have 3 more videos on cute ways to tie various scarves.

I hope everyone is having a great Thanksgiving weekend!!

Love and kisses!

Olivia Palermo Gets Her Own Reality Show

Fans of MTV's The City will remember Olivia as Whitney Port's snotty, but oh-so-well-dressed rival on the show.

Olivia has recently been quoted as saying "I'm currently working on a TV project, my own show". According to gosspicenter.com, her show has yet to be picked up by a network, but based on the networks that might be interested, it seems like it may be a reality show.

Olivia Palermo in a necklace she designed along with jewelry designer Roberta Freymann

Olivia will be following in the footsteps of fellow MTVers, Lauren Conrad, who is currently working on a new reality show revolving around her fashion line (on MTV) and Audrina Patridge, whose reality show was picked up by VH1.

Lauren Conrad and Audrina Patridge at the 2008 VMAs

As a fan of both The Hills and The City, I look forward to seeing what all of these shows have to offer. Here's to a lots of fashion and drama in 2011!

Will you guys be watching any of their shows?

Love and kisses!

Quick Tip: DIY Storage for Headbands and Jewelry

I like to have all of my accesories and jewelry out in the open to make it easier to choose from. Otherwise, I forget what I have and end up wearing the same thing every day.

So I store all of my headbands on a little cork board that I stuck to my wall with that sticky, double sided tape stuff (can't remember the name!) and then use little thumbtacks to hang my headbands on.

I bought my cork boards and clear thumbtacks at Ikea, they were super cheap!
I also organize my longer necklaces the same way.

I actually like to hang my cork boards on my walls (yeah, my bedroom is basically a giant dressing room that happens to have a bed in it!) but this would work great on the inside of a closet, as well.

Love and kisses!

Weigh in 2

OK So I just finished my second week on my 'journey'.

The results are in and I've lost.....

0 pounds.

ARGH!!!! This week was Eid, everyone was home and, as per tradition, everyone kept sending us food baskets with lots of yummy pastries! Seriously, argh!! I did really well on the first few days, and to be fair, I did manage not to over-eat at meals. It was just all of the cheating and the little cookies in between that did me in!

I was talking to a friend today and she was telling me how I picked a really bad time to start trying to lose weight. She does have a point, between Eid, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve it does sort of seem like I'm fighting a losing battle.

But then today, I read something over at Lindsey's blog Football, Faith and Flying. She said "Nobody wants to wake up on New Year's Day knowing they could have been 20 pounds lighter, but instead they are 25 pounds heavier." 

And she's totally right. I could easily give this up, but I know that the only person it would disappoint is me. And if I give in to the holidays, I am only going to make things harder. How many times have I given up at the beginning of the year and beaten myself up when summer came around? When I SHOULD have been wearing my little dresses and showing off my legs, but instead I stuck with floor length maxis to hide my giant calves? 

So this week I'm just going to try extra hard. Thanksgiving is just one (absolutely glorious) day.  I don't want to mess everything up for one day. I did that this week and that was the last time it will happen.  Losing weight isn't easy. You have to put an effort into it. Thanksgiving and Christmas come along every year. There's no need for me to eat like there's no tomorrow. It will be really hard, but I think I can do it!

This week's UPs:
I worked out twice (two more than last week yay!)
Bought new running shoes (can't wait to try them out tomorrow morning!)
My new Reebok Runtones. Yes, I gave into the fad. They were actually the most comfortable pair I tried on! They were so bouncy!
I also found these cute headphones at Daiso (the Japanese Hypermarket where you can find practically everything!) My headphones always pop out of my ears when I run, hopefully these will help.

I didn't gain any weight, surprisingly.

This week's Downs:
I didn't lose any weight so I have to work super hard to make up for it.
I cheated. A lot. Damn those delicious cookies!
I didn't eat very well either. I kept waking up at noon and would skip breakfast and head straight into lunch.

Well, there you have it. My second week. It feels like I have so much longer to go! 

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend.

Love and kisses!

Face of the Day+ My New Hair!

I love seeing everyone's FOTD posts, and so I thought that I would start my own.It's nothing fancy at all, just a very simple look that I wore for running errands this morning.

I also wanted to show you guys my new hair color! The blonde was just too high maintenance, plus it was getting too light so I toned it down a few shades.

Yeah, not quite sure what is going on with my mouth in this one...The only photo where flash turned on and  you can see that the highlights are still there, it looks a bit lighter in the front. 
A picture of the blonde for reference, unfortunately I don't have that many good pictures of the color and for some reason it looks a little green here!

I only used a rinse so hopefully the dark color will wash out in a few weeks and I can add a little red to it for Christmas!

My makeup is super simple.
Eyes: Mac's Satin Taupe on my lids, liquid liner, L'oreal Lash Renewal mascara.
Face: Stila Sheer Color Tinted Moisturizer in Warm, Bobbi Brown Concealer - Honey, MAC Select sheer Loose Powder NC40, Mac Refined Beyond Bronze Bronzer
Lips: MAC lip conditioner, Petting Pink

Well, there's my very first FOTD!! What do you guys think?

Nails of the Week

It has recently come to my attention that I may have a slight problem when it comes to buying nail polish. I love having my nails done and I feel somewhat 'ungroomed' if they aren't polished.

I know that my collection is still 'small' compared to other bloggers, and I'm still not in the big leagues as I do not own a Chanel polish (yet). But it is a lot because I still haven't worn most of them.

So here's my new polish challenge.. I'm not going to buy any more nail polish (unless it's Limited Edition, hey a girl can only have so much self control!) until I have worn every single one of these. I think that's reasonable enough.

Here is this week's polish:

Premier Dame by Nailstation, Essie Base coat + 2 coats of polish + Sally Hansen Top coat

This was actually a gift from my friend Felicia, who is well aware of my addiction. It's a beautiful dark eggplant purple. Very pretty, although it's been two days and it seems to be chipping slightly at the tips. Other than that, I just love the color. It works really well with neutral tones and feels like a grown-up alternative to black polish.

What colors are you guys wearing this week?

Love and kisses!

Brush Wash Day!

Everyone has been off this week for Eid al Adha. So my parents have taken this opportunity to clean and redecorate the house from floor to ceiling.

I'm doing my part by cleaning out my closets and reorganizing everything. Yesterday, I cleaned out my closet and got rid of all the clothes that I don't wear so that we can give them away. I think I have like 3 or 4 boxes already! Today I am conquering my makeup and jewelry. I just finished washing my brushes (and am slightly procrastinating about doing the rest, hence this post!)

I usually make a proper brush cleanser with shampoo, disinfectant and leave in conditioner. I was a bit lazy today, I just used my tea tree shampoo because it is gentle and tea tree oil is also has natural antibacterial properties.

I dry them on a towel in my sink. That way, they lie mostly flat, but at a tiny incline so that water doesn't get into the barrels. I use a dark towel in case there are any traces of makeup left, it's the same towel I use when I dye my hair, hence the dye stains hehe

I can't wait till they are all dry. I love freshly washed, fluffy, soft brushes! *mental note: find cat and snuggle with him*

What have you guys gotten up to this week? I hope everyone has had a lovely Eid!

Love and kisses!

Forever 21 Sales Make Me Happy

I went to Mirdif City Center today to meet a friend for coffee and exchange some shoes that I bought last week. I found a really cute pair of sandals at New Look, but when I got home I realized that they were two different sizes! Luckily, the guys at New Look were super sweet and helpful about it. They gave me the right ones and sent me on my merry little way.

Then we went down to Forever 21, which was on sale. I didn't want to spend too much time in there, and I'm trying not to buy lots of clothes right now, so I just bought some jewelry.

Anyone who knows me well enough will know that I love rings. I'm kind of obsessed with them. I especially love big ones, so I was really excited when I spotted these ones:

I thought they were soo pretty and they looked much more expensive than Forever 21!

They were on sale for....15 dirhams a piece! Yay!

 I also bought this necklace because it was too cute and too cheap to pass up (10 dirhams!)
Just a little every -day-statement necklace to wear with dresses or jeans and a ponytail.

Finally, we stopped at the Face Shop and I bought this pretty maroon/burgundy polish with tiny glittery flecks in it.
Very fall and festive. 

Well, that's my teeny, tiny little mini-haul for today! :)

Love and kisses! 

DIY Beaded Knot Statement Necklace

Here's a really easy necklace that I made this week. I was inspired by this one:
I'm pretty sure this one's by Anthropologie, but I'm not 100% certain.

I had some leftover sparkly beads from last Christmas, but they weren't enough on their own so I added little beads in between the big ones. 

 I strung the beads onto two pieces of jewelry wire and made loops at the end (for the clasps)

Then I just looped them over each other to create the knot

I attached a little bit of chain in the back and a small clasp.

I couldn't get my knot as big as in the original picture, but I gave myself an 'A' for effort. Anyway, a girl can never have enough sparkles in her wardrobe! I think this would be cute with a LBD and a blazer.

Love and kisses!

My New Favorite Nail Polish!

Introducing my go to polish for this autumn/winter.

Earthly Harmony. Part of MAC's Trend F/W 2010 Limited Edition Collection

I actually had to go to two stores to find this shade. I found it while browsing my local MAC and fell in love. They were completely sold out, so the hunt was on! 

The official description is "Muted Taupe (Frost)". It's a gorgeous 'greige' shade with teeny tiny flecks of gold to give it  a warm sheen. The gold flecks do show up in the bottle more than on my nails, but the actual color of the polish is so pretty that I don't really care. 

 With Flash
Without Flash

This is such a pretty neutral shade. It goes really well with all of fall/winter's darker colors and I know that I will probably be wearing it loads next spring as well. I'm actually going to hunt down another bottle because I love it so much. 

I have found that this wears really well, especially for MAC polish. With a base coat and top coat, I can get at least 4-5 days before it starts to chip. The only thing is that I noticed the polish is really creamy, so I'm worried that it may start to thicken soon. Just another reason to stock up on multiple bottles!

What are your favorite winter polish shades?

Love and kisses!

DIY Hair Donut / Big Buns for Cheaters

I am so in love with this year's big topknot/ballerina bun trend. They look really chic and are also a great, last minute way to put up dirty hair and still look polished.
Lauren Conrad's big bun

 Unfortunately, my hair is a bit on the shorter side so my buns always look a little..deflated.

I came across this post at Glamour magazine's beauty blog, and decided to make my own hair donut. A donut is basically a little round pillow that you use under your hair to make your bun look bigger. I used the leftover 'stuffing' that was used in my updo for my friend's wedding and a pair of old nylons. The whole process took me about 15 minutes and I'm really happy with the results!

Here's how I did it:

I used old nylons, and the net. Yes, it was a giant updo! I also used scissors, a needle and thread and snap buttons (I think that's what they are called!)

Step one: cut off one of the feet of the nylons. Make sure that it is bigger than the circumference of your ponytail.

Step two: stuff it! *insert dirty joke here* I used the netting because I already had some. You can use anything that you have lying around, even the rest of the nylons. I didn't make mine too thick because my hair is shorter and I need to be able to cover the donut. 

Step three: Sew the snaps onto both ends of the donut. (This is what it looked like when I snapped them together)

Tada! Just place the donut around your ponytail and snap it together. Then take the ends of your hair and pin them under the donut, making sure to conceal it. 

Well, there ya have it. A super easy project that I'm sure will be a total lifesaver for me this holiday season.

Hope you guys enjoyed this! I hope the instructions were clear, this is my first real tutorial! Let me know if you decide to make one.

Love and kisses!

A Falling Star Fell From Your Heart

It's been so cloudy lately. It's actually very pretty. I love Dubai in the winter. The weather is gorgeous, the skies are blue and everything just seems really calm. I know a lot of people say that you need snow to make a real Christmas, but everything's starting to feel really Christmas-y to this Dubaian! I'm ready to get out my tights and scarves :)

This is one of my favorite winter songs. It just screams winter to me. Perhaps the video has a little to do with it, but every time I hear this song it just makes me want to curl up under the stars with a giant mug of hot chocolate...and a special someone.

Florence + the Machine, Cosmic Love

And here's a gorgeous acoustic version:

Hope everyone is having a beautiful weekend. 

Love and kisses!

Red Is the New Black

At least with hair color, that is!

Celebs are loving red hair at the moment, and women all over the world are quickly following suit.

 Rihanna and her Ronald Mcdonald hair
Cheryl Cole and her deep mahogany hair. She used L'oreal Castings in #550 and is probably responsible for their biggest bump in sales ever!
Emma Stone. One of my biggest girl crushes right now. Hard to believe she's a natural blonde!

Red hair is becoming one of the most requested hair colors these days. 

So what's the big draw about red hair? Well, for starters, red is super sexy. It's wild and unpredictable. Today's modern reds are much deeper and brighter. They make more of a 'look at me' statement. Red hair also provides a great way to warm up fall's color palette and keep things spicy. Even my friend Aisha has been bitten by the bug!

I'm even thinking of dying my hair red myself. The blonde is just really high maintenance for me, but I've only had it for a couple months so I'll probably wait until after the holidays to try it out.

Have any of you gone red? What do you guys think of the trend?

Love and kisses!

Well, Hello There!

I haven't posted anything in a while and I'm so sorry! I've been super busy with my friend's wedding and haven't had any time to blog. The wedding was GORGEOUS and I promise that I will post photos very soon.

Here's a quick picture of the henna I did for the wedding.

I bought a tube at one of the salons here and it took me about 15 minutes to finish the whole thing. I found some inspiration pictures online and free-handed the rest. I only managed to have enough time to finish the one hand though :(
Don't worry, I didn't actually wear purple polish to the wedding. I wore a pretty, shimmery nude shade that didn't clash with my dress!

Hope everyone is well!

Love and kisses!