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Tuesday, June 28, 2011 H and M Summer Makeup Collection And NOTD

I went into H&M the other day to check out their makeup and they had their new summer makeup collection out. I love the packaging and I am a sucker for inexpensive makeup (and pretty packaging) so, I grabbed two items, the eye quad in Birds of Paradise and the nail polish in Ocean Sand :)


 Birds of Paradise eye quad (approx 30 dirhams)


I thought these shadows were just GORGEOUS and I loved the slight shimmer. Like the other shadows I tested, these are also pretty good for pigment. They came off a little bit powdery, but I'm sure they'll stay put with a good base. I can imagine wearing a wash of the blue or purple with lots of mascara, with a pretty maxidress at night.

H&M nail polish in Ocean Sand (21 Dirhams) Three coats

I just fell in love with this polish in the store. In the bottle, it is a deep gold, almost bronze with a gorgeous shimmer and tiny flecks of glitter. On my nails....not so much. The color is still very pretty, but it's just not as impressive as it is in the bottle. I wore this yesterday, but I think I'm going to take it off today because I just don't like it that much. Hopefully it will grow on me. It is a very pretty color, I just think it wasn't what I was expecting. 

Have you guys tried any of H&M's summer makeup? What do you think of gold polishes?

Monday, June 27, 2011 TAG! Top 10 Award


Delyteful Speaks tagged me in this one. She is super sweet and very considerate. She also write some awesome, very honest reviews so I definitely recommend her blog if you are looking for new products. AND! She lives in Dubai, too! We haven't met up yet, but I sense many, many meet ups to come :)

OK, so the rules for this one are: Link back to the person who tagged you, nominate 10 other bloggers and list your 10 favorite beauty products.

Here are my ten faves! These are the ones that I use regardless of what season it is, or what look I am going for. They are definitely my 'staples' that keep me pretty in the desert! :)


Sephora Professionnel #18 Crease Brush: This is one of my favorite brushes to use on my eyes. It is fluffy, but dense enough to blend beautifully. I've had it for years now and reach for it more than my MAC and Sigma crease brushes.
Urban Decay Primer Potion, Original: No introduction needed. I panic if I am not wearing this under my eye makeup!
Nars Multiple in South Beach: My very first multiple. I love this on it's own and layered under pink or peach blushes. It looks gorgeous underneath Orgasm and gives my cheeks a little more depth. This has lasted me years (bad blogger!) I keep it in my bag when I am out all day, because it is just so easy to wear and really brightens up my face.
 Sabaya Liquid Eyeliner from Mikyaji: This stuff lasts and lasts and lasts. I like the pointed felt end and the liner is sooo dark. It's great for dramatic looks, although I pretty much wear it for everything  :)



 Secret Platinum Protection Deodorant: I've worn this faithfully since highschool. I tend to sweat a lot (don't judge me!) and this helps keep me dry and non-stinky hehe. I have tried so many other deodorants, but I always come back to this one. I stock up when I'm abroad because we don't always get this over here :( The mini ones are great for my gym bag!
Tom Ford Black Orchid EDP: I love this perfume! I first tried it last summer and wear it all the time. It's a bit heavy, but it smells so gorgeous that I will even wear it during the day, in the summer. It's just so sexy and feminine. It kinda reminds me of what Cleopatra would have smelled like :)


(hey kitty cat! ) Pure, Organic, Extra Virgin Coconut Oil: (sorry I lost the label!) I bought this in Manila last year. Coconut oil is one of my favorite things for my body. I apply it straight after my shower and it makes my skin sooo soft! I'll sometimes apply it to my legs if I want a little bit of a sheen. It soaks in really well and is not greasy. I even apply this to my face and around my eyes, sometimes. And it helps heal blemishes! (I know, I was as surprised as you are!) The organic kind is very lightly scented so you don't have to worry about smelling like coconuts all day!


 Sebamed Liquid Face & Body Wash: My dad actually got me hooked on this! I use it as a body wash because it is soap free and PH balanced. It doesn't dry out my skin, but leaves it super clean. I sometimes mix a little baking soda with it for a gentle scrub, when I've been out all day and sweating (see above haha)


Bobbi Brown Cleansing Oil: I love this for removing my makeup. I use two or three squirts and just gently massage it all over my face, and then rinse it off. So easy! And it gets off pretty much everything. It also rinses clean and doesn't make my skin feel greasy.
Hawaiian Tropics Oilfree Faces Sheer Sunscreen SPF 30: My every day sunscreen. Not greasy at all, and it sinks in really well. It's also great to wear under makeup. I'm pretty sure I've mentioned it a few times on this blog hehe :)


Finally, here are the bloggers I'm nominating:
Aisha from Blank Canvas
Simone from Simone Loves Makeup
Nora from Botoxey
Stephanie from Ess-Jay24
Hind from Beauty Agenda

Well, there you go! I can't wait to see everyone's top 10s!! :)


Sunday, June 26, 2011 A Quick Giveaway Update

Hey everyone! Hope you are having/have had a wonderful weekend! :)


I just wanted to let you guys know that, for some reason, blogger won't publish all of the comments on my giveaway post. I can read them all because they show up on my dashboard, but not my blog :(

Anyway, I wanted to make sure that I don't miss out on anyone so I'm going to quickly list the entries I can find. If you are not on the list, but you have already commented, please leave a new comment with your details for me :)

Gilvanilma
Beatriz
 

 
  
Camelia
Michelle
Katherine 
Shannon
Tras El Secreto
Cristine
Paula
Raissa
Batool
Anouk
Melanie
Beautybyroshx
The Peach
Hannah
Rosalina
Zofiana
Stephanie
Rachel
Ki
Ana


And if you haven't entered yet, here's a link! :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011 Hair Rehab

I've always had very thick, strong hair. However, I've recently noticed that I've been losing more and more hairs every time I shower. Normally I'd notice just a few hairs in the shower drain after I wash my hair, but in the past two months, that amount has multiplied. I've noticed that my hairline has really started to thin out.

In a panic, I called my dermatologist. He recommended that I start taking iron supplements. He said to try it for a month, and if there is no difference, we will have to look into topical treatments.

Being the slight drama queen that I am, I requested the topical treatments right away! hehe

Phytocane Revitalizing Shampoo, phyto 9 leave in hair treatment, Gentle Iron 25 mg tablets, Phytocyane thinning hair treatment ampoules (All available at Supercare Pharmacies in the UAE)



I've been instructed to take two iron tablets a day, and I've replaced my regular shampoo with the Phyto one. I massage one bottle of serum onto my scalp, once every 4 or 5 days. The Phyto 9 hair cream is just because my hair has been so dry lately and wanted to try out a new product :)

So, how is it going so far?

I have actually noticed a decrease in the numbers of hairs that I am losing. It hasn't completely stopped or gone back to where it was before, but there is a noticeable difference, even though it's only been a couple of weeks.

My favorite products are the shampoo and the nourishing cream. The shampoo cleans my scalp without drying out my hair too much and I've noticed that my scalp isn't as temperamental as it normally is. The Phyto 9 nourishing cream really makes my hair feel much softer, especially the ends, without making it feel greasy or heavy.

The scalp treatment is OK. It's too early to give a proper review on that. It's very watery and it kind of tingles a little when you first apply it. I guess that also helps because you automatically think 'ah, my scalp is tingling so it must be working!'

As for the iron, I haven't really noticed a change in my energy levels or anything like that. I started to get dark circles around the same time my hair started to shed, which is why I agreed that it might be my iron levels. I have noticed a slight lessening of the dark circles, but nothing super noticable.

Anyway, I'm going to keep using these products for the rest of the month and see how it goes. I'm feeling quite optimistic right now :)

Have any of you used these products? Do you recommend anything else for dealing with hair loss? I am dyeing my hair today. I've avoided it for almost two months because I thought that might have been what was causing my shedding. I don't think that was it, though, and I'm so tired of staring at these roots!! Grrrrr!


Tuesday, June 21, 2011 Review: Bourjois 10 Days No Chips Nail Enamel



 Bourjois 10 Days Nail Enamel #13 Soft Pastel Pink and #17 Bougainvillea

 Some very quick, very messy swatches! Three coats of each polish applied to bare nails.


I received a couple of Bourjois new nail polishes when I went to their summer launch last week. I had a chance to wear them over the week and here's my review! :)

Bourjois says:
With an exclusive fortifying formula and angled touch-up brush, 10 days Nail Enamel gives nails perfect colour and hold for up to 10 days, with an invisible touch-up. Nails are twice as strong and chip-resistant with a luminous and subtly pearly finish.

With a pro-silicium formula, nails are twice as resistant and protected with no chips and no breaks. 

I say:
There are a lot of things that impressed me with this polish. First of all, let's talk about the brush.


 The brush is wide, flat and slightly angled. I generally prefer flatter brushes for my polish because it makes it easier for me (personally) to paint my nails. So this was already a plus for me. I didn't really think the angled tip would make much of a difference. I was wrong. The angled brush makes it MUCH easier to paint the corner of my nail beds with just one stroke (instead of the two or three tiny strokes it usually takes me!)

Another thing I like about these polishes is that the cap clicks when it's fully closed. I know this is a minor detail, but I really like this because I tend to get paranoid about closing my polish bottles tightly enough. No more worrying about the polish clumping or drying out :)

These polishes also dry surprisingly quickly. They're dry to the touch within minutes, even without a topcoat. The formula is pretty good, too. You can get good coverage in two coats, but I always use three because I'm anal like that. These polishes are also pretty glossy, and you know how I love my shiny nails!

Now for the big question: Do they live up to the 10 Day claim?

The bottles promise "10 Days No Chips" or "+3 Days minimum". I applied my polish and went about my daily life. I had no chips at all, until I went in the pool two days later. I noticed that one of my fingernails was peeling. I should add though, that as a nail biter, my nails do tend to peel, with or without polish. So, even though I usually get at least a few days wear, nail polish doesn't always last on me like it should. I also didn't notice any difference in the strength of my nails when I used these.

In conclusion, I think these polishes are worth purchasing, even if just for the bottle design and formula. But I wouldn't personally use this polish and expect it to last an entire 10 days without any chips at all (I never do, though!)

There are 12 shades in the current range, but I do believe the new So Laque! range will be launching here soon and they have lots of gorgeous summer brights! Yay! :)

Have you tried these out?


Monday, June 20, 2011 Celebrate Good Times, Come On!

What up, peeps? We are officially a dot-com!!

Welcome to prettyinthedesert.com!

Kool and the Gang - Celebration. I dare you not to bop around to this!! :)

It's been a long ride (a little over a year) and I have finally decided register the domain. Thank you all for your support because without it, I would just be sitting here, typing to myself. (you know it's true haha)
So go get your party on! And kindly adjust your bookmarks as necessary :)
Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a horribly outdated and awful version of the robot to do. Wooo-hooo!


Sunday, June 19, 2011 Happy Father's Day!

Today is father's day and I thought I'd add in a post of my own :)

I was supposed to make a 'throw back' post for Mother's Day, after I saw 25FLondon's. I didn't though, and I'm not sure why. I'm pretty sure I just forgot. I tend to do that.

Moving on.....


 Me and my baba on the day I was born. This picture was actually taken from the scrapbook that my mom made me for my birthday. It's so sweet, I have to share the pictures soon!

True story: I was the first grandchild on both sides of my family. When my dad's family found out that my mom was pregnant, they sent over a suitcase all the way from the UAE (to the states). It was full of pink baby girl clothes! My mom was like 'we don't even know if it's a girl or a boy!' But my grandmother was like 'IT'S A GIRL!' haha I'm pretty sure that suitcase is the sole reason that I became the girlie girl I am today!

My little brother, my mom and me. Check out my hurr! It's still pretty much the same hahah *tosses hair from side to side* 


Happy Father's Day Everyone!! I don't even want to think where I'd be without all of the love and support that I get from both of my parents. Make sure you call/hug your parents and tell them how much you love them! 

 

How to Get Naked (And Not Get Arrested)

As you probably already know, Urban Decay has relaunched in the gulf! Yay!!! *happy dance* I will no longer need to beg anyone going overseas for my beloved primer potion!!

Urban Decay products are now available at Sephora in Mall of the Emirates and Dubai Mall. They have launched the full range and...wait for it......

The Naked Palette is here!! *gasp* This is pretty much a product that needs no introduction. So, all I'm going to say is head down to the mall NOW. Thank you Urban Decay, for choosing to launch when I am saving for vacation. *grrrr*

available at Sephora Mall of the Emirates and Dubai Mall, 220 dirhams


They also have some of the gorgeous 24/7 eye (and lip) pencils. I haven't tried these yet, but my friend Aisha has and she pretty much swears by them. I really trust her opinions when it comes to make up so her mini-review is enough to tempt me! :)

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencils in Oil Slick and Binge 88 dirhams each


And finally....dun dun dun....ohmigosh, I love these. Seriously. As my grandmother says, these primers make my 'heart go pitter patter'. I always tell people that if you put these on under your makeup, you can dance all night, cry all night, sweat all night, throw up all night and pass out, then wake up in the morning without a smudge. For realsies.


Primer potions, 88 dirhams each

Bloggers and makeup lovers have spoken and Urban Decay has graciously listened. Primer Potions are now available in squeeze tubes, to prevent wasting product! Yay!!! I had a really quick look at the stand last weekend, and I definitely saw the different types of Primer Potion, but I'm not 100% sure whether they were in the squeeze tubes or 'vintage' bottles. I'm heading there again soon so I'll take more pictures and let you guys know. 

Have any of you already grabbed up some Urban Decay goodies? Are you as excited as I am to have them back in the region? :)


Wednesday, June 15, 2011 Pretty at...The Bourjois Summer Launch

A few days ago, I went to the launch for some of Bourjois's summer products. I went with the oh-so-awesome Simone, from Simone Loves Makeup. Love that lady, she's so funny! And we managed to squeeze in some political discussions, too. Who says beauty blogger's can't get serious?

The event was held at Bo House, a Bohemian themed cafe/restaurant at Jumeirah Beach Residence. I didn't even manage to try out the food because I was so obsessed with the yummy drinks!!

This event launched two new product ranges, the Trio Smoky Eyes palettes and the 10 Days Nail Enamel range. The trios are "inspired by the timeless Bourjois Little Round Pots and offer a range of 3 complementary colors for smoky eye effects". The nail polishes have "an exclusive fortifying formula and angled touch-up brush." They also promise to give "perfect color and hold for up to 10 days".


 The fashion shades were my favorites. I love the bright colors. I totally wanted to steal those shoes!!! hehe

Classic Shades, gorgeous neutrals that are perfect for special occasions or any time of the year.

A 'sexy phone' (for those of you who watch Modern Family hehe)

 The eyeshadow catwalk. It took me forever to realize that the colors on the catwalk coordinated with the shadow palettes!

Gorgeous greens in the Vert Trendy palette
 The Gold Smoking Palette. I love the gold in it for a dramatic, summery smokey eye.

 
The palettes are small enough to fit in your palm or clutch! :)



Everything was so cute!!
I had my nails painted in #16, Coral pink. So pretty and summery. And honestly, has not chipped since the application!

Yummy!!

I had such a lovely time. And it was nice to meet some other bloggers, as well. We were given a goodie bag with some of the products to try out and I will swatch and review them as soon as I can! Have any of you tried these products yet?

PS. Please answer my poll on the top right corner of the page. I'm slightly concerned that I use too many pictures in my blog posts and would love to hear what you think! Thank you so much!! :)

 

Summer Beauty Series - Sun protection

This is the first part on my series on Summer Beauty. Being from Dubai has meant that I have had to endure super hot summers my entire life. The only good thing about this is that it's made me a sort of self-taught expert on 'Summer Beauty' ie 'How to Avoid a Complete Beauty Meltdown When It Gets Hot'.

Let's get started, shall we?

My favorite sunprotection products

Wearing sunscreen is probably one of the best things you can do for your skin. Remember that prevention is always better than a cure, this is especially true when it comes to your skin. Sunscreen can protect your skin from ultra violet rays and prevent hyperpigmentation (dark spots), wrinkles and thickening of the skin. Repeatedly exposing your unprotected skin to the sun can also increase your chances of skin cancer.


Did you know that a higher SPF might not be worth the money? SPF 30 blocks out 97% of the sun's rays and SPF 50 blocks out 98%. Even a sunscreen with a SPF of 100 will not block out 100% of UV rays, despite the fact that they are usually marketed as such and cost a lot more!


A lot of people think that they don't need to wear sunscreen because they have darker skin and don't burn as easily as people with lighter skin. The truth is that darker skin is at a lower risk for skin cancer. However, the type of melonomas (skin tumors) on people with darker skin tend go undetected for a longer. Which means that the cancer usually has a chance to progress further before it is detected and treated. This makes the cancer even more dangerous.

So, in conclusion....WEAR SUNSCREEN.

I know how hard it is to wear it, especially during the summer because a lot of sunscreens are greasy and heavy. It can also make your makeup look blotchy and shiny.

Here is a list of some of my favorite sunscreens that seem to work pretty well in the heat:

Banana Boat Kids UVA & UVB SPF 50:
I usually wear this on my "delicate areas" when I go to the beach. It's a little bit too heavy for my face, so I apply it to my shoulders, chest, knees, feet and tummy. It is a little bit sticky, but it gets the job done and I haven't ever burned when wearing this. Note: The FDA has finally updated it's regulations for sunscreen. Please read more about that on their website.

Hawaiian Tropic Oilfree Faces SPF 30:
This is my favorite. It is available at supermarkets and such a bargain. I usually wear this every day. It is very light and almost sinks into your skin as soon as you apply it. It can easily be worn under makeup and there is no white cast at all.

Eucerin Sun Fluid Mattifying Face Protection SPF 30:
I bought this a couple of weeks ago because I was wanted to try something new. This one is suprisingly good! It's one of those 'liquid' sunscreens so it's very light. It does not give a white cast or those annoying 'sweat beads'. It soaks in nicely and does dry to a matte(ish) finish. I went to the souq last week and was outside all day. I didn't burn or tan at all, and I was sweating like a mofo! Very impressive.

Nivea Sun Invisible Protection SPF 30
I bought this one when I was on vacation last year. It's not a traditional oil spray and I appreciate the fact that it is not in an aerosol can. This sunscreen is great to apply on bigger areas of your body (like your legs, arm and back). It is very light and I hardly feel it when I am wearing it. The smaller size makes it easy to pop in your beach bag. The only thing I'm not too fond of is the smell. It smells a teensy bit like hairspray. I've gotten used to the smell though, and always apply it if I'm heading to the beach or pool :)

Sephora Sun Velvet Sunscreen Spray SPF 20
I got this one at an event and I love it. One thing about Sephora is that they know how to make products that smell nice! This one smells gorgeous! It doesn't have a traditional beach smell, but it does have a distinct monoi oil scent. I haven't worn this to the beach because it is a little heavier than the Nivea one. But I have worn this to my outdoor yoga class and it worked wonderfully.

I hope you guys enjoyed this post! Sorry it was a little long, but sun protection is something I take very seriously. I'm pretty sure that if you're one of my friends, I have at one time barked 'PUT ON SOME SUNCREEN' at you. And I am sorry. But wrinkles and skin cancer are not fun!! hehe :)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 Artist of the Week: Alison Mosshart



Alison Mosshart is one of my favorites. In my personal opinion, she's one of the ultimate rocker chicks of the moment. I think she's incredibly talented, gorgeous and has an amazing sense of style. Her look screams superstar, but always in a sort of 'I really don't care' kind of way. She always looks like she's just wearing something that was comfortable. She's never too styled and just lets her long, dark hair make the statement for her. That statement being 'I'm the coolest girl in the room'.

Alison is best known for being half of The Kills. She is also part of Jack White's 'Super Group', the Dead Weather.


The Kills - Tape Song


The Dead Weather - Bone House


*sigh* So, how many ritual sacrifices do you think I would need to perform to be as cool as she is? You know, just for curiosity's sake...


Monday, June 13, 2011 Orange You Glad I Didn't Say Banana?

(That was one of my favorite jokes as a child!)

 Illamasqua Gamma, Dashing Diva Heel-arious (I think!), Color Makeup #25, H&M Sunset Dreams, Bourjois #11, Essie Capri 


Orange is absolutely one of my favorite colors this summer (and maybe this year!). I'm trying to incorporate as much of it into my wardrobe as possible. It's a little hard because I have a slight aversion to clothing that is not a neutral color. I'm easing my way into it, starting with my nails. These are some of my favorite orange polishes and I'm sure I'll be getting a lot of use out of them in the next few months!


Review: Twisted Sista Curl Spray and Activator

Twisted Sista Curl Activator and 30 Second Curl Spray
 (Available and Spinneys)


Twisted Sista is a hair care range hailing from London. It is made specifically for curly hair, and the tagline includes 'celebrating curls, farewell to frizz, we pump up the volume'.

I was excited to find this in my local supermarket because I was looking for ways to limit using heat on my hair. I needed products that would allow me to airdry my hair and wear my natural curls out. 

I try to avoid alcohol based hair products because my hair is already so dry. Paraffinum liquidum (petroleum based mineral oil) and glycerine are main ingredients in both products. Mineral oil is another thing I try to avoid in my beauty products in general, but my hair had gotten so dry that I was willing to try it out!  Glycerine is a humectant, which means it attracts moisture.

So, based on that, one would think that these would be great for conditioning my curls and keeping them frizz free!

WRONG!! These products seemed to be a little bit of a contradiction for me. I found both of them to be too heavy for my hair. They left a somewhat greasy film on my strands and made my hair feel tacky. However, at the same time, I found that they made my hair feel drier. This might actually be due to the mineral oil (a big reason why I avoid it, and should never go against my intuition!) I found that an hour or two after using them, my hair became very frizzy and dry, with an almost matte texture. Not sexy.

I'm disappointed because I feel like these products could have worked better. The packaging is cute and simple. The smell is refreshing and not too heavy. Both of them contain UV filters and antioxidants, and they have not been tested on animals. These could have been great products, but they didn't work for me. Luckily, they were very inexpensive so I don't mind too much. 

Have you tried these products? Do you have any suggestions on products I can use for my curly hair? Right now, I'm back to using my 'cocktail' of products, which I will post about soon :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011 My Bloggiversary Giveaway - 1!! Summer Treats!

 This giveaway is now closed.

Pretty in the Desert turns one on the 14th of June!! :) I can't believe it's been a year already!! To celebrate, I wanted to hold one big(ish) giveaway, but I decided to break it up into a few smaller giveaways. I just hate that I can only have one winner, and this way I can have more than just one! :)


The items that are up for grabs.


For the first giveaway, you could win:

A set of four mini nail polishes from H&M. 

 These H&M polishes are all very bright and summery! Plus, the small size makes them great to stuff in your purse or suitcase. I know some of you have said that you don't get H & M makeup in your country (we only just got it over here!) so it's also a great opportunity to try some of their stuff out :)


 H&M Lip Balm in Fresh Mint

How pretty is this pot? I just loved the way it looked and it's mint flavored as well! Great for hot summer days (and warm summer nights when you're looking to pucker up, you saucy minxes!)


 A purple money purse

 I thought the little money purse would be so cute to take to a festival or on holiday. It has a little thing at the top, so you can loop through a chain or some ribbon and wear it around your neck. I thought it would be great because you won't have to dig in your bag for your money. (Make sure you tuck it inside your shirt if you are somewhere busy, so people don't try to steal all your money!!)


 Nubar nail art pen - Gold Frost, Daiso nail art pen - Silver

These nail art pens are great for adding detail to your nail designs. They have a subtle shimmer in them, and would work so well against summer's neon polish shades :)


Giveaway Rules:
You must be a follower of the blog. 
You can follow the blog through GFC, Facebook or Bloglovin'.
You will get one entry for each way that you follow PITD. That means you will get three entries if you follow via all three :)

This giveaway is open internationally, but please get your parent's permission if you are under the age of 18.

To enter, just leave a comment here on the post, letting me know that you would like to win the stuff, and make sure you let me know how you are following the blog. 

The giveaway will end on the 1st of July and the winner will be announced shortly after that :)

Bonus entry: put a picture of the giveaway on your sidebar and link back to this page! :)


Good luck my little butterflies!! (hahaha, I don't know why I said that, sorry!)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011 My Hair Over The Years

My hair and I haven't been best friends lately (details in upcoming post!) but I still love it! Nora from Botoxey just made a post about her hair, and she said she wanted to see the different colors I've had so here ya go! :)

 Just some of the different hairstyles I've worn over the past three years. 
There are lots more, but I will save those for another time :)


My hair is not the easiest to take care of. Being mixed (black and Japanese) has offered me a lot of versatility when it comes to my hair and my looks. My natural hair is curly, but it's more like springy waves than curls, as you can see in the picture on the bottom right. I was blessed with strong hair that can withstand a lot of torture! My hair is also great because, with a little help, it can really hold a style (most of the time!) It's also pretty easy to straighten, and will stay straight until I wash it.

However, wearing my natural curls can be a bit of a hassle. They tend to drop quickly and straighten out if I touch them :( I also have to deal with a lot of the issues that come along with curly hair. Mainly dryness and frizziness! Obviously, living in this climate isn't doing me any favors!

I like to play around with color a lot, too. In the past three years alone, I've been various shades of blonde, brown, black and red! I wore extensions for a while, too but couldn't find any decent pictures of that!

Two summers ago, I had Japanese Straightening done on my hair. It was great because my hair was straight all the time, and it really cut down on my styling time. But I really missed my curls and my volume! You know us Dubai Girls, we like everything BIGGER!! hehehe :)

Do any of you share my love of 'instant gratification' via hairstyles? :)


Sunday, June 5, 2011 H and M Makeup

H & M launched their makeup collection over here last month. I went down to their store at Mall of the Emirates to check it out.

I was surprised by how many products there were! Eye shadow palettes for 36 dirhams, nail polish for 21 dirhams, blush and bronzers for 21 dirhams...it was kind of insane!

I only grabbed a few pieces:

H&M Nail polish - U Must Have This, Blusher - #15 Bronze, Nail Polish - Dust and Diaminds (21 dirhams each)

 The nail polish

H&M Blush - Bronze

I have to say that I'm really impressed with the quality of the products. The nail polishes are probably thick enough to only need one coat, but I apply two anyway. I swatched the eye shadows in the store and they were surprisingly pigmented. I'm not sure why exactly I didn't buy the eye shadows palettes.

The blush selection wasn't as big as the polish selection, but they had a few pretty shades. This one doesn't really look it, but it's very glowy and shimmery. It'll be a great all over color for me when I want a 'no makeup' look!

Have you guys tried H&M's makeup? Any suggestions on what I should get next?


Thursday, June 2, 2011 17 Mini-Haul

A few weeks ago (yes, I am very bad at blogging on time), I went into Boots and they were having a 2 for 3 deal on their 17 makeup. I have read so many reviews about the Mirror Shine lipsticks and decided to try some out. Plus, 50 dirhams for three items of makeup is pretty hard to pass up!

They didn't have the ones I wanted, but here's what I ended up with:


Va VA Voom Mascara - Electric Blue, Shine One Lipstick - Watermelon Crush, Mirror Shine Lipstick - Flirtini

17 Va Va Voom mascara, Electric Blue

How pretty is this blue?? I've been looking for a blue mascara ever since my friend Drina tried on the one that came with MAC's Wonder Woman collection. The color was so pretty against her brown eyes and the effect was much more subtle than we expected it to be. I haven't worn this yet (because I am a wuss!) but I'm going to try and wear it this weekend and will post pictures.

 
17 Mirror Shine lipstick - Flirtini, 17 Shine On Lipstick - Watermelon Crush

These lipsticks were my favorite colors of the bunch. I didn't test Watermelon Crush and I was expecting it to be a little more pink/watermelony. It's a pretty, shimmery peach that almost looks nude on my lips.

Flirtini caused a bit of a hassle for me. I bought one that still had the tape around it, but when I got home the tape felt a little loose and I thought someone may have already opened it. It didn't look like it had been tested, but I didn't want to risk anything so I started to scrape it before I soaked it in alcohol to disinfect it. And then it broke :( I might just melt it down and put it in a little tub.

Swatches: Flirtini, Watermelon Crush


We don't have a very big selection of 17 makeup over here. It's mainly the lipsticks and mascaras. There are still a few more of the Mirror Shines that I want to try out. Have you guys tried any of these? Any suggestions for what I should try? What about blue or colored mascara? Has anyone been wearing any recently?

Yay for the weekend!!!


May Loves

I can't believe the year is already half way through!! I still feel like it was just New Year's Eve...then I go outside and think 'Freak me, it's HOT' and I remember it's June.

In an effort to be a more efficient blogger, here are my May favorites, right on time! 

 Virgin Coconut Conditioner, 17 Wild Curls mascara, Nivea Mattifying Day Care cream, Essie Good to Go top coat, Secret Platinum Protection deodorant, Illamasqua Glint & Writhe Bronzing Duo 

 

I bought this conditioner in Manila last year. It's got pure coconut oil in it and it really makes my hair soft. I've been using it as a leave-in conditioner and loving it! 
It's summer now and starting to get very, very hot and humid over here (averaging 38 degrees) It's time to switch to my super-strength deodorant. I've used Secret almost religiously since high school. The Platinum Protection range is my summer favorite. Unfortunately, it can be hard to find here so I have to stock up when I see it!


I bought the Nivea Mattifying Day Care Cream because my skin was dry, but not as dry as it was a few months ago. This doesn't make me break out, despite being thicker than I anticipated. It has an SPF of 8 (I believe) but I don't like relying on sun protection that is mixed in with creams or makeup, so I apply my regular SPF 30 on top of it. I'm not too sure of the mattifying effects, but this doesn't make my face any shinier than usual.


17 Wild Curls Mascara is super cheap (25 dirhams at Boots) and it does a great job. It doesn't provide the most dramatic results, but it really defines my lashes. I can't say much about 'curls' part because I didn't notice that my lashes were curlier than usual, but it does lengthen them quite well and doesn't smudge.


Essie Good to Go quick drying top coat has been a life saver for me. It smoothes out any brush marks on my nails and helps my nails dry super quickly. I love using this because I can paint my nails right before I leave the house and they'll be dry to the touch by the time I'm out the door.Which is great if you have time-management issues like I do!


I've been using this bronzer duo a lot, recently. It's great for day time because there aren't any glitter flecks in it, so you just get a gorgeous, shimmery glow. The bronzer is just dark enough to really bring out my tan and it is very long lasting as well. I don't have to worry about sweating through it, which is surprising for a bronzing powder!


What were your favorite products last month? :)