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Saturday, 15 September 2018

Online Shopping ft. Ajio Part 1

9/15/2018 0 Comments
Hello lovelies!

We all love shopping online, don't we? Chilling at home in your nighties, swiping up and down on your fave website, comparing prices, getting a good bargain - all of this without even having to set foot outside of your home can be quite fun for some of us! While there are those who are skeptical about making purchases without trying it on and prefer shopping the traditional way, there are also some of us who love good deals. I have been shopping online (and offline of course!) ever since it was introduced in India. My first purchase was a pair of red heels from a random shoe store that surprisingly was legit and did deliver on time! I am already quite a shopaholic and you won't be surprised to know that I'm also an online shopping junkie.

A friend from work introduced me to Ajio sometime early this year and just before I moved here I went a bit crazy and picked up not one, not two, bit five dresses/kurtis! Ajio definitely has stolen a lot of hearts all over India and although, back then it wasn't all that popular, I still did put all my faith in Ajio and I sure as hell was not disappointed! But then again, we all have had our fair share of bad experiences with online shopping - it's usually a hit or miss kind of a situation. So here are a couple of things you need to know before you become a pro online shopper!

  • With popular websites like Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra etc., the chances of having a bad user experience are very rare. You can almost always trust them to deliver on time or before time and they usually have a good collection of products. And even if they do mess up, they have a very helpful customer care team with a very effective return and refund policy.
  • Brands do matter when you shop online and it's always a great idea to pick up stuff from brands you've heard of and used before rather than buy something random just because the picture looks appealing! And trust me, even with reputed brands, I have received defective or smelly products. That's why it's good to shop from websites with a good return policy. 
  • Don't get fooled by the images uploaded. Most of the times the product is nowhere close to what it looks like in the images on the website. 

  • The best case scenario, at least for me, is when I spot a product in the store and find the same one online for nearly half the price. Yes, that has happened to me a couple of times! So before buying something in a store, pull your phone out and check for the price online.
  • If you like staying up to date with the current trends, then you probably won't find too much of a price difference with clothes you find in stores and the same ones online. But if you don't mind wearing something that was in trend a couple of months ago and aren't available in stores, then you should pick 'em up online and expect massive discounts.
  • SALE - definitely my fave four letter word! Wait for the end of season sale and you won't be disappointed with the deals you get!
  •  When you are looking at a certain piece online, it's best to just buy it then and there rather than wait for the price to drop. The analytics engines of most good websites observe your shopping patterns and the moment a product gets a lot of views, the prices tend to increase. 
  • With online shopping, you need to be very patient. The shipping takes a while and if you feel the need to return a product, it takes some more time - so buying gifts or things you need urgently is a big no! 
  • Read reviews of products before you purchase them. When you absolutely hate something, the first thing you do is write a bad review. And if you spot more than two bad but logical reviews, then it's best not to buy the product.

So with all of that being said, let's talk about my outfit. I had no idea what one could wear to work in Sydney before I got here, so I went on a bit of an Ajio bender. I can't remember the prices - but I think I spent around 2500 INR for 5 dresses (which means this is a 5 part series, so brace yourselves! :p) and I was pretty happy with the quality. Kurti dresses have become so popular and literally anybody of any size, shape, age can pull it off. I loved the pattern on this one and realized I can also just wear it as a summer dress in Sydney. I paired it up with my Steve Madden boots to make it look edgy. 

So, what's your take on online shopping? Do let me know in the comments section below!

Hand On The Hip

Saturday, 8 September 2018

Simple ways to get rid of dandruff

9/08/2018 0 Comments
Hello everyone!

The term "dandruff" makes almost all of us cringe. Nobody wants to feel embarrassed at work or be too conscious to wear black. While the cause for dandruff can be literally anything, from a skin disease to just dry skin to climatic to stress, there are multiple ways to get rid of it too. Since I faced the worst kind of dandruff attack earlier this month, it inspired me to educate you folks about the same and talk about my experience. This is deffo not a sponsored post (although I do wish Head and Shoulders does take a look at this and hire me as their brand ambassador =D Too ambitious?) and I really want you guys to know that you're not alone!

Well, if you have been up to date with my earlier posts, you'd know that I recently moved to Sydney and started working quite recently. Since the only move in my life before has been from Mangalore to Manipal to Bangalore, I had not experienced living in a different country for more than a couple of weeks. Well, Mangalore and Manipal are coastal towns and while most visitors might find the weather annoying and sweaty, for someone like me who's been born and brought up there, it's paradise for my skin and hair. I experienced my first pimple when I was 22 ish and had moved to Bangalore! Yeah, that's how awesome the weather as well as the water in Western Ghats actually is! I spent around five years in Bangalore after college and it took a toll on my skin and majorly on my hair. Somehow, after experimenting with a bunch of hair care products, I managed to bring it to a state where it was under control to some extent. I realized that shampoos alone aren't enough and they work differently in different weather and water conditions. I'd use only specific shampoos that would keep my scalp moist in Bangalore since the weather was quite dry and use whatever I wanted to in Mangalore because it's not as harmful. But alas, the week I moved to Sydney, I experienced the unexpected!

The shampoo that works best for me (Pantene) turned out to be my worst enemy! Now I don't know if it was the harshness of the winter or the heat of the water I used or the shampoo itself or work related stress, my scalp exploded! I was shedding tons of white particles off my head all day long! I These particles then flew across and landed on my face causing acne. I had trouble focusing on work, I was always scratching my head and I felt grotesque! Finally, I resorted to certain measures that helped me clean my scalp in no time!

  • I picked up a very expensive bottle of Head and Shoulders shampoo. This has been known to be a lifesaver when it comes to dandruff and it never disappoints! I made sure to use this every other day till my scalp was clear! Clinic Plus and Clinic All Clear are some other options you can try, but H&S is globally available and recognized. 
  • I changed my pillow case and bed spread immediately. Dirty sheets can dirty your scalp and cause your skin to get irritated. I am going to try and ensure that I change my sheets at least once a month!
  • I also cleaned all my hair brushes and combs with hot water and some shampoo. 
  • I try to wash my hair as frequently as possible. They say it's not a healthy option to wash your hair everyday, but it's way better than going to bed with a dirty scalp. So if you work out everyday, it's best to wash it everyday too.
  • I am suspecting that using a dry shampoo could have also played a part in this ordeal. Hence, I have decided that I am going to wash it off the same day I use it or probably not use it at all.
  • Your diet also plays a role, but there weren't too many changes with respect to that in my life, so I don't know. I should probably try drinking a lot of water, maybe?
  • I was so annoyed at work, constantly checking my shoulder and running to the ladies room. If you are extremely uncomfortable, avoid wearing black and tie up your hair in a bun on days it gets uncontrollable.  
  • If it doesn't go with H&S, then pick up a strong ketoconazole shampoo or something that a dermatologist would recommend. I try to stay far away from this because I tend to lose most of my hair with these shampoos! It's better to have some hair with dandruff than no hair at all, right? :D
  • Regular hair treatments, hair spa, application of henna can be a great way to nourish your scalp! I tried this hair mask from Coco and Eve and it really helped me get that shine.
  • Try staying away from chemicals! These new shampoos in the market like SP, Tresseme, Schwarzkopf etc. are not at all advisable if you already have a dry or damaged scalp.
  • Natural remedies like lemon, curd, neem etc. seem to work wonders - will probably try them next time! Hopefully, there won't be a next time! :p
  • In order to avoid dandruff from causing acne on your face, it's a fantastic idea to do everything you can to keep your hair away from your face - messy buns, head bands, turbans - whatever it takes!

The key is to not worry too much. It's absolutely normal to go through a dandruff overdose phase and it's not the end of the world! 

Hand On The Hip

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

L'Oreal Paris Infallible Lip Gloss - yay or nay?

9/05/2018 0 Comments
Hello peeps!

If there's one make-up product that I apply every single day without fail, it is a lipstick or a lip gloss. When you're running late and want to look fresh, a lip product is all you need to get that made-up look. When you don't have enough room in your purse and want to have some make-up handy in case you plan on going out after work, a lipstick is absolutely that go-to product you need. When your hormones are acting up causing too much acne (kinda like my situation right now!) and you need to cut down on make-up.... well, a lipstick is your best friend! Our mothers, even grandmothers swear by it and lipsticks might probably be the only make-up product they own. Last month I was out shopping at Central with my sister-in-law, trying out some lippies for her and I came across the L'Oreal Paris Infallible Lip Gloss that just blew my mind, quite instantly!

That brings me to the million dollar question - How do I know what lipstick I should buy? I have been a lipstick consultant (sounds like a fancy profession, doesn't it? :p) for a lot of my family members (proudly showing off :p) and while picking out a lipstick, here are some of the things I consider -

  • The shade : The shade needs to compliment your skin tone. I have noticed that nude shades don't suit me well and brighter shades like blush, violet, tomato red etc. make me look less dull. There's no hard and fast rule here and it's mostly trial and error. This particular shade called 'Aphrodite Kiss' looked fabulous on my sister-in-law as well. So, make sure you try it out before you make a purchase.
  • The brand : When it comes to make-up, it's best not to experiment too much. Try to stick to brands that have been in the market for a long time and read a lot of reviews on the internet (especially HOTH reviews :p) before you buy something. Some brands that never disappoint are Lakme, MAC, L'Oreal, Bobbi Brown, Maybelline, Revlon.
  • The feel : In contrast to my earlier statement, just because a lipstick belongs to a reputed brand need not necessarily make it the best product for your lips. Some lippies are not meant for dry lips and you might end up with chapped lips. Do pick out something that is hydrating enough and leaves the skin of your lips moist and glowing.
  • The texture : Matte or glossy? That's yet another concern that most people seem to have. I have definitely been a big fan of glossy lipsticks back in the day when I was a teenager, but lately I have been collecting matte lipsticks. It's entirely your choice, but a matte lipstick suits pretty much everyone! 
  • The duration : If you want your lipstick to last all day long, then you should opt for highly pigmented shades and brands. I could do a whole other post on this topic. But for someone like me, I prefer a lipstick that fades away on its own because it's not very healthy to use deeply pigmented make-up products. To be on the safer side, prep your lips with a lip primer before using these shades.
  • The price : Now the price entirely depends on how much you are willing to spend. The more you spend, the better your lipstick quality would turn out to be and they tend to last longer as well. That being said, there are some drugstore brands that are pretty amazing as well. 

Now let's get back to the review. Considering all these factors, I got the lipstick of my dreams for about 799 INR and it was the best decision ever made! Also, the fact that lipsticks are super versatile makes it even more desirable. I almost, always only carry a lipstick (kinda lazy that way!) in my purse and use it on my eye and cheeks as well. Over here, I have used one product as a lipstick, eye shadow and blush. What do you think?

Here are some things I liked about this product (and there's not a single con, trust me! Also, this is not even a sponsored post :p) -
  • The texture is pretty amazing! It's not too drying like most matte glosses or lipsticks are. 
  • The color I chose is one of my fave shades for a lipstick and I honestly think it suits almost all skin tones.
  • The bottle has enough content to last a really long time and I guess that's why the pricing is justified. 
  • It comes with an easy-to-use wand and application of the product is ridiculously easy.
  • As I mentioned earlier, the product is multi-purpose and doesn't really smudge, so it's works fabulously well as an eye shadow or a blush.

Overall, this product gets a 4.9/5 for me (the 0.1 has been deducted for the price considering I promote affordable fashion and beauty :p) and I would recommend this to everyone who wants to try out a new product. And for those of you who don't have a single clue about lipsticks, you know where to find me! :)

Hand On The Hip