Growth Amongst the Concrete Part II

 

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Namaste,

I hope that you enjoyed the photoshoot.

Although this is part II of the Growth Amongst the Concrete series, the whole idea actually stemmed from this particular post- a cruelty free makeup photoshoot.

There is so much more to the application of makeup than we realise. Of course, it is a superficial ritual which we perform, with which our appearance is altered, according to the application that we choose. However,  I believe , makeup is tantamount to choice. Not only do we choose a particular guise with each application of makeup, but the actual makeup we choose to wear is significant within itself.

Makeup does not only have the capacity to empower its wearer through the confidence that it lends, it also gives its wearer the opportunity to empower their environment. By making the conscious decision to only purchase and wear cruelty free makeup, you are empowering the voiceless who have suffered in many labs for multiple cosmetic conglomerates.

As the saying goes, “beauty is what beauty does”. The foundation of every choice we make is consciousness. On the surface level, our ego comes first, our appearance is a priority. However, allowing for that choice to go deeper than our ego, allowing for something as seemingly superficial as makeup to empower, that is the deepest level of consciousness.

The best part  it that it is actually achievable! Every ounce of makeup worn by these models is cruelty free.

Enjoy!

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Model: Jade Scott of Sync Models (@its_jade_scott)

Makeup by: Amy Aronowitz (@amzam)

Photographed by: Ricky Want (@picture_rick)

Foundation: BH Cosmetics Foundation & Concealer 10 Color Palette 1

Bronzer: Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer in Chocolate

Blush: By Terry Sun Designer Palette in 4 Savannah Love

Highlighter: Charlotte Tilbury, Sun Light from Film Star Bronze & Glow Palette and 3INA The Highlighter in 200

Eyeshadow: Tarte Tartellette In Bloom Palette

Brows: Too Faced Natural Matte Palette and set with Essence Lash and Brow Gel in Transparent

Lashes: Eyelure Volume in 101 finished with Essence Lash Princess

Lips: Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops in Rose Gold

Powder: LA Girl HD Pro Setting Powder in Translucent

Set with:  Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

 

IMG_5403Photographed by: Ricky Want

Makeup: all as above

Lips: Huda Liquid Matte in Heartbreaker (from Liquid Matte Minis Red Edition)

 

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Model: Thabisile Zwane of Sync Models (goldensyrup_ntha)

Makeup: Jess Shub (@jessheartspugs)

Photographed by: Ricky Want

Foundation: BH Cosmetics Foundation & Concealer 10 Color Palette 2

Contour: Winky Lux Eyeshadow in Boots and Peanut Butter

Highlighter: Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops in Rose Gold and 3INA The Highlighter in 200

Eyeshadow: Huda Beauty Textured Shadows Palette Rose Gold Edition and 3INA The Highlighter in 200

Brows: Winky Lux Eyeshadow in Boots and set with Essence Lash and Brow Gel in Transparent

Lashes: Eyelure Volume 107 Lashes finished with Essence Lash Princess

Lips: Colour Pop Ultra Satin Lip in Panda

Powder: LA Girl HD Pro Setting Powder in Translucent

Set with:  Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

 

 

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Makeup: As above

Lips: Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Celebrity Skin

 

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Model: Noncendo Zondi (@unoncedo)

Makeup: Jess Shub

Photographed by: Ricky Want

Foundation: BH Cosmetics Foundation & Concealer 10 Color Palette 2

Contour: Winky Lux Eyeshadow in Boots and Peanut Butter

Highlighter: Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops in Rose Gold, 3INA The Highlighter in 200 and #Blessed from Huda Beauty Textured Shadows Palette Rose Gold Edition

Eyeshadow: Huda Beauty Textured Shadows Palette Rose Gold Edition and 3INA The Highlighter in 200

Brows: Winky Lux Eyeshadow in Boots and set with Essence Lash and Brow Gel in Transparent

Lashes: Eyelure Volume 107 Lashes finished with Essence Lash Princess

Lips: Too Faced Melted Matte Longwear Lipstick in Violet

Powder: LA Girl HD Pro Setting Powder in Translucent

Set with:  Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

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Photographed by: Ricky Want

Makeup: As above

Lips: Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick in Celebrity Skin and Cover FX Custom Enhancer Drops in Rose Gold

 

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Model: Harriet Brooks Francis of Sync Models (@harrietbf

Makeup: Amy Aronowitz

Photographed by: Ricky Want

Foundation: BH Cosmetics Foundation & Concealer 10 Color Palette 1

Bronzer: Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer in Chocolate

Blush: Prime from Charlotte Tilbury The Vintage Vamp Luxury Palette

Highlighter: Charlotte Tilbury, Sun Light from Film Star Bronze & Glow Palette and 3INA The Highlighter in 200

Eyeshadow: Charlotte Tilbury The Vintage Vamp Luxury Palette and Huda Beauty Textured Shadows Palette Rose Gold Edition

Eyeliner: NYX Extreme Shine Eyeliner in Glitzy Gold

Brows: Too Faced Natural Matte Palette and set with Essence Lash and Brow Gel in Transparent

Lashes: Eyelure Volume in 101 finished with Essence Lash Princess

Lips:Charlotte Tilbury, Sun Light from Film Star Bronze & Glow Palette

Powder: LA Girl HD Pro Setting Powder in Translucent

Set with:  Urban Decay All Nighter Long Lasting Makeup Setting Spray

 

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Photographed by: Ricky Want

Makeup: as above

Lips: Colour Pop Ultra Matte Lip in Dr.M

 

To being conscious and chic….

Shari

xxx

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Growth Amongst the Concrete

 

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Namaste,

Today I want to chat about growth.  This concept is very subjective by nature and therefore is only measurable by the individual him/herself. While the ultimate end goal of one’s growth may differ from person to person, one cannot deny that the whole notion is one of self indulgence.

The significance of self indulgence in this sense is actually rather complex and should not be confused with that of selfishness. Often when one conceptualises this, ideas of hard work, dedication, determination and so forth come to mind. My question is, at what cost? I believe that a great challenge that we all experience at some point in our lives is in finding the harmony and balance between self love and kindness and the lengths we take each day to achieve this ultimate idealised growth. Whilst growth is fundamental to achieving the self actualisation we strive towards, sometimes the precendence that we place on it, naturally means that other aspects of life will tend to suffer.We live a  “hustle and grind” lifestyle and sometimes the tunnel vision towards our goals means we forget to think holistically.

The point of this shoot is to  highlight that there is beauty in every crevice of life and while it is important to focus inward, it is equally important to look up and appreciate the external. This is my vision of  growth amongst the concrete. Behind every decision- the beauty of the setting, the models, the clothing and the makeup there was consciousness. Every product and item of clothing were carefully considered ethical choices , each in their own right.

 

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Model: Thabisile Zwane of Sync Models (@goldensyrup_ntha)

Makeup: Jess Shub (Facebook: Makeup by Jess)

Vest: Ester at Le Perline (@le_perline)

Skirt: Anyplace at Le Perline

Shoes: Footwork (@footwork_za)

Earrings: Inkaturah (@inkaturah)

Photographed by: Eddie (@thebeesource), edited by Ricky Want (@picture_rick)

 

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(Left) Model: Harriet Brooks-Francis of Sync Models (@harrietbf)

Makeup: Amy Aronowitz (@amzam)

Crop top: EXJ at Le Perline

Pants: Le Perline

Shoes: Footwork

Photographed by: Ricky Want (@picture_rick)

 

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Model: Jade Scott of Sync Models (@its_jade_scott)

Top: Please at Le Perline

Pants: Le Perline

Shoes: Footwork

Makeup: Amy

Photographed by: Eddie, edited by Ricky

IMG_5378.jpgChoker: Inkaturah

Photographed by: Ricky

 

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Jumpsuit: Rinascimento at Le Perline

Makeup: Amy

Shoes: Footwork

Choker: Inkaturah

Photographed by: Ricky

 

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Sunglasses: Mykita (Stylist’s own)

Photographed by: Ricky Want

 

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Two piece outfit: EXJ at Le Perline

Makeup: Amy

Sunglasses: Models own

Shoes: Footwork

Earrings: Inkaturah

Photographed by: Eddie, edited by Ricky

 

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Makeup:  Jess

Top: Anyplace at Le Perline

Skirt: Rina at Le Perline

Earrings: Inkaturah

Shoes: Footwork

Earrings: Inkaturah

Photographed by: Eddie, edited by Ricky

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Photographed by: Ricky Want
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Photographed by: Ricky Want

 

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Model: Noncendo Zondi (@Unoncendo)

Makeup: Jess

Crop Top: Rinascimento at Le Perline

Skirt: Any Place at Le Perline

Shoes: Footwork

Photographed by:  Eddie, edited by Ricky

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Photographed by Eddie, edited by Ricky

 

 

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Makeup:Amy

Striped top: Risac at Le Perline

Pants: Any Place at Le Perline:

Shoes: Footwork

Necklace: Inkaturah

Photographed by Ricky

 

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Photographed by Ricky Want

 

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(Harriet) Dress: Rinascimento at Tali Romberg

Makeup: Amy

(Thabisile) Dress: Jus d’Orange at Tali Romberg

Earrings: Inkaturah

Makeup: Jess

Photographed by: Ricky

 

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Makeup: Jess

Crochet top: Lacomy at Tali Romberg

Pants: Le Perline

Choker: Inkaturah

Shoes:Footwork

Photographed by: Ricky

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Photographed by Ricky Want

IMG_5424.png(Left) Dale Schmidt of Sync Models (@daleschmidt10)

All clothing: Dressed and designed by MR. By Michaela Ovadia (@michaelarebecca)

Shoes: Models own

Photographed by: Ricky Want

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Photographed by Ricky Want

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All clothing: Dressed and designed by MR. By Michaela Ovadia

Photographed by Ricky Want

 

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Photographed by Ricky Want

 

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Model: Shaun Goldberg (@shaunashley_)

All clothing: Dressed and designed by MR. By Michaela Ovadia

Photographed by: Ricky

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Photographed by Ricky Want

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All clothing: Dressed and designed by MR. By Michaela Ovadia

Photographed by: Ricky

 

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Photographed by  Ricky Want

Sponsors:

Le Perline

Dezzi and Barbara started Le Perline from home 20 years ago. They import all their clothing from Italy. They travel there twice a year and hand pick the latest fashions themselves. They now have a store in Senderwood and offer free services for dressing ladies and helping them with their wardrobes.

Contact Dezzi: 073 709 7644 or Barbara: 083 450 3127

15 Chaucer Avenue, Senderwood Shopping Centre

Tali Romberg

Tali studied fashion. She started off working in factories and then for various designers for many years. She has manufactured her own ranges. 8 years ago she started importing her clothing from Paris and Italy. Because of her trained eye in fashion, she is always finding good quality, well fitted clothing with an edge.

Call her for an appointment: 0828513927

Michaela Rebecca

Landforms is an organic menswear autumn/ winter collection designed for the metrosexual male who is conscious both about his appearance and the environment. The collection is inspired by the curved, natural, flowing lines of topography. The loose fitting, oversized silhouettes are inspired by daring Japanese street style and take the form of nature’s contours and mountain shapes with the use of raw and jagged edges. Dusty tones of browns, pinks and greys and the use of 100% natural fibres create an overall earthy feel. With sustainability being a growing phenomenon in the fashion industry, different methods of sustainability were implemented throughout the collection. These methods and approaches include the use of organic fabrics, local sourcing, eco-conscious production, donation and recycling of waste and garment after-care recommendations to continue a sustainable lifestyle.

Portfolio available at M.R Portfolio

Inkaturah

Inkaturah = In essence
The brand name is derived from Katurah, my
second name, which means perfume. The analogy of a person’s scent to their character is often used, and so Inkaturah is when one is within their essence.

Each statement piece gives the wearer an opportunity to express themselves and is designed to be a miniature piece of art.

Designed with a layering technique, drawn from my architectural background and combined with my creative spirit and love of colour and materials.

The pieces are a combination of various geometres made from Wood, glass beads, brass, copper and fabric.

each piece has a unique story to tell and is representative of African Luxe: elegance and quality in African Design.

 

Footwork

Find their shoes at The Showroom, Woodmead Valuemart, Shop S, Upper Level. — at Woodmead Value Mart or online at The Showroom Online

 

Special thanks and mention to:

Stacey Samiya! (inspace_stace) 

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My badass sidekick, thank you for helping me with the styling. Without your creative eye, my vision of this shoot would never have come to life. Moreover, thank you for your cool and collected mind. Many a crises were avoided and averted thanks to your zen attitude.  I can’t wait for many future projects with you, you talented human!

Quorum Properties 

Thank you for allowing us to shoot on your beautiful rooftop of the Work + Art building in New Doornfontein. A special mention to the artist behind the sculpture that appears in many of the photographs, Jake Singer (@jakemichaelsinger)

A huge thank you goes out to all those that sponsored the clothing, jewelry and shoes.

Lastly, my whole heart is filled to the brim with gratitude to the models,  photographers and makeup artists for your patience, professionalism and for generally making the whole atmosphere on set a fun one!

Keep an eye out for the next blog post, which will be uploaded in two weeks time, for a detailed breakdown on all the cruelty free makeup used in this shoot!

 

Let that beauty seep through the cracks.

Until next time,

Shari

x

 

Empresses of Egoli

 

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Namaste!

Firstly, allow me to apologise for being a day late publishing this blog post. I promise I have a legitimate reason….

Meet Enzo.

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He is our hand reared rescue pup. Although from very humble beginnings, he has decided that MacBook Pro laptops are his new chew toy of preference. As a result, I have a cracked screen and a laptop in repairs for the next 2 weeks.

But, fear not! I am committed to the spread of a conscious culture and therefore my bi-weekly blog posts will be halted no longer.

This week’s blog post has been in the works for quite some time and is one that I have been itching to share.

Have you ever been conscious enough of your surroundings to acknowledge every single person who crosses your path? I am not referring to merely noticing a person, but to actually being cognizant of the fact that every single person has their own story, their own hardships and traumas and also their own ambitions and achievements. We often get so caught up in the every day “grind” and feel as if others are obstructing our path but fail to stop and appreciate THEIR own personal paths.

Being the feminist that I am, I decided that I would like to create a sistership of sorts by acknowledging the lives of women whose paths I happened to cross and getting a sense of their feelings about womanhood and their personal ambitions for the sex.

I have decided to call this post Empresses of Egoli, not just for it’s alliteration appeal but also because every single one of these women ran their own empire on some level.

 

Meet our Empresses!

 

Sonia

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Hairstylist from Mozambique.

 I like making women feel beautiful!

 

Cindy

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Owner of a potato shop in Jeppe

 

 I don’t want to lie, I’m happy! I want to grow more each and every day

Farirai 

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Retired model, currently working as a makeup artist (but still working it!)

 

As the saying goes, ‘what a man can do, a woman can do better’, but we always let the man win because we have always been brought up to believe it’s a man’s world. In the coming years, I believe that there is hope for women, emancipated, independent single women, black, white, Indian, whatever. We are capable of leading. We don’t need to necessarily undermine men and say ‘men are trash’ and whatever. Lets push to be successful, let’s not be aggressive

 

Thandie, Kea and Mildred

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(From left to right) Kea (portfolio manager), Mildred (Bookkeeper), Thandie (portfolio manager) of Quorum Properties

Mildred: I think women should be given more opportunities in the executive functions. I feel like there are not enough women CEOs and chairmen of companies. It’s always very male dominant, you never really find women on top. I think we can change it but I think we also need support from everyone around us because if no one is willing to change certain things, we’re always going to be stuck in the same place. We need to change the mindset of us and everyone around us

Unfortunately we weren’t able to catch this beautiful lady’s name because of a language barrier. A lady from the store next door had to translate for us but still, the communication was difficult.

 

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Sells peanuts around Jeppe. Her baby is due in December

I want to see women being well treated

 

Neo

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Freelance graphic designer

 I’d like to see women stand up for themselves more. We know the work place is still very male dominated, unfortunately. Even with the small stuff, just stand up for yourself and don’t be shy about your achievements. Be strong!

Zahra

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“I’d like to see a vision of womanhood that sees us being able to understand that there are very many ways to be a woman and that there are different struggles that make up different experiences of womanhood. I think within all of those struggles- no fear, no danger. Whether you’re a queer woman, a woman of colour, a working class woman, there should be no fear and no danger.

 

As with all of my posts, I would like this to be of an empowering nature rather than one of victimisation. These women have all experienced their own personal type of womanhood. Having been from different struggles, their stories and positions vary. However, they are starting their own revolution for the empowerment of woman, whether it may be by owning a small business or studying towards a career.

The starting point is there but the end point goes beyond the stars. Let’s soar.

Until next time,

Shari

 

Photography by the incredible Tessa Barlin @tessabarlin_wildlife

Bunny Lovin’ Beauty

Screen Shot 2017-10-02 at 12.33.38 PM.pngNamaste,

I have decided that I am going to be uploading every two weeks from now on. I would like the extra time to put out the most smashing and inspiring blog posts, which takes more time than I had initially anticipated. You know- quality over quantity and all that.

Today, we are talking beauty!

I am an absolute avid cosmetic and makeup collector (and hoarder), the more I see the more I need. Following beauty gurus on Instagram and Youtube certainly doesn’t help with the addiction.

To my advantage (or disadvantage-sorry purse!) the choices of cruelty free companies have exploded as people have started to become a lot more conscious about the process which goes on behind the makeup/ cosmetic production.

I personally don’t agree with the whole PETA-esque approach of  guilting readers into purchasing cruelty free products through graphic and grotesque imagery of animals in laboratories. My approach is to show you the myriad of options, to show you that it is possible to have clear and glowing skin, soft and shiny locks, popping cheekbones, on fleek brows and all the like, whilst still maintaining a cruelty free lifestyle.

From time to time, I will be uploading a few of my favourite products. These are well used and loved products which means that I can truly provide you with an honest review!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on any of these products or if you have any cruelty free holy grails that you can recommend.

Without further ado, let’s get to it!

 

My Cruelty Free Favourites

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Perfume

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Diptyque Eu Duelle Eau de Toilette

For me, perfumes were one of the hardest things to let go of when I decided to switch to using only cruelty free products.

When walking through department stores or duty free at the airport; the floral, spicy, woody scents envelop me into a cloud which almost has the hypnotic power to convince me to forget about my cruelty free ways and just buy that sexy smelling nectar.

Luckily, there are more and more cruelty free options which are making this whole scent scenario a whole lot easier for me.

Diptyque is a Parisian perfumer specialising in luxury home fragrances, candles and body care. They have a wide collection of scents to suit different tastes, but for me, Eau Duelle was by far the most complex. Woody, spicy, sexy and sweet all at the same time.

Diptyque describes Eu Duelle as a perfume full of contrast. An intriguing infusion of idle Bourbon vanilla, awakened by the woody, animalistic scent of rockrose and ambroxan.

I always get compliments on this one. I’ve even been told that it smells like sexy Creme Soda 😉

Who needs a green ambulance now?

$90.00 50 ml
$130.00 100ml

(Available at Luminance, Hyde Park)

 

Hair Care

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Davines NouNou Hair Mask

Davines, as a brand, is one that I really admire. Not only are all their products cruelty free (including their in-salon colour), they practice and preach sustainable beauty. For them, sustainability deals with the responsibility they owe to themselves, the people with which they work, their customers, and the world in which they live and operate.

The best part, their products are top notch, world class, amazingness.

I have to say, a product which really shows results consistently, is the NouNou Hair Mask. A nourishing repair mask for highly processed and brittle hair.

I have been bleaching my hair for many years now and heat style it every other day. My hair cries for some TLC and NouNou does just the job.

Although it is a mask, I use it as my daily conditioner. As I rinse this out, my hair already feels like butter. The results just get better as my hair begins to dry. It leaves me with soft, shiny, manageable and smooth locks!

R395/ $34

(Available at all Carlton Hair Salons)

 

 

Skin Care

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The Body Shop Oils of Life Facial Oil

Although The Body Shop is owned by L’oreal which is renowned for its animal testing, The Body Shop has always stuck to its ethics in this regard. Most of their ingredients are fare trade and are focused on enriching our planet, enriching their products and enriching the people behind the products. You can only feel proud when making a purchase there.

(Ps: they are running a petition against animal testing in store, next time you pop past, sign your name.)

People are often afraid of including oil in their facial care regimen with the concern that it will make oily skin oilier and therefore cause acne or pimples. This is actually a myth, if you nourish your skin with high quality oils, your sebaceous glands will be less likely to secrete additional oils!

My skin is particularly dry, especially over the winter months. I apply this oil at night after toning and before moisturising. It feels luxurious and is extremely nourishing without causing breakouts.

R290

(Available at The Body Shop stores and selected Clicks nationwide)

 

Makeup

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Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops in Rose Gold

Two of my favourite things: a popping highlight and rose gold.

The Cover Fx Custom Enhancer Drops give me both. SOLD.

These drops are customisable, which means they can be used in various ways to give you the desired look you are after. You can mix them into your foundation to give you a sun kissed glow or apply it to the high points of your face for a more buildable highlight. I find that the best way to apply it is by blending it with a damp Beauty Blender sponge. You are left with a rose gold, liquid metalic finish which somehow looks natural. Magic? I think so.

$42 at Sephora. Also available at musebeauty.co.za for R890

 

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Korres Lip Butter in Pomegranate

Korres is another clean and natural brand which means great joy along with your purchase of their products.  Their philosophy is to develop products which are friendly to the skin but also to the environment.

This lip butter is dual purpose. A mixture of shea butter and rice wax offers deep hydration while providing colour and shine. The perfect handbag product!

A quick tip, if you are really in a pinch, you can even use this as a blush!

$12

(Available from Sephora and Korres online)

 

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Tarte Tartelette in Bloom Palette 

If I wasn’t such a makeup hoarder, this would be all the eyshadow I would ever need.

This is the perfect neutral palette with both shimmers and mattes. The lighter shades make this the perfect everyday palette while the darker colours means that you can jazz up your eyeshadow for evening looks.

The pigmentation is out of this world, a tap of your brush into the pan gives great colour pay off. These shadows have a buttery texture and blend like a dream.

$46

(Available at Sephora and musebeauty.co.za for R950)

 

Body Care

 

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Petal Fresh Body Butter in Guava Nectar

To be honest, I had never heard of Petal Fresh before. I came across this body butter while doing some shopping at the health food store and was drawn to it by its yummy sounding scent. Once I saw the leaping bunny logo (the logo indicating that the product is cruelty free), straight into my basket she went!

I am so glad that this made its way into my bathroom cabinet because it is just as yummy as it sounds. Not only does one smell like an ice lolly after application, but this stuff is seriously moisturising!

I suffer from eczema and incredibly dry skin and I found this stuff to be sufficiently moisturising, even during the winter months and mild enough as not to agitate my sensitive skin.

 

R160 

(Available at Jackson’s Food Market, Bryanston)

 

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Molton Brown Delicious Rhubarb and Rose Body Lotion

I don’t have to tell you how much I love this one, it’s pretty clear in the image!

Molton Brown is one that always catches me. Their products always look so luxurious and their scents are nothing short of exotic.

I am usually not a fan of rose scents but the rose gold pump with the pink bow immediately caught my eye.

The rhubarb mixture freshens up the rose scent and eliminates that “granny-ish soap at the basin” smell.

This scent is simultaneously zingy and sweet and while admittedly being a hefty purchase, it truly is a slathering of luxury.

Not to mention how pretty it looks on your dressing table!

 

R450/ $33

(Available at Molton Brown online)

 

I hope you enjoyed my selection of cruelty free favourites. I am constantly trying out new products and once I am confident that I love them, I will be sure to share them with you!

 

Until next time,

Shari

 

All pictures taken by the amazing Ricky Want 🙂 @picture_rick

Do the Hokè Pokè (Bowl).

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Namaste,

I hope that you all gave last week’s blog post, Feminice or Feminazi a read and somehow internalised the writing into a cognisance of sorts. Have you noticed how gender roles are so rigid? How we are so conditioned into these roles that they don’t seem to be anything but natural?

Gender discourse, specifically of a feminist nature, is always controversial. Last week’s blog post did cause slight dissension but that makes me realise that this is why many of these issues exist to begin with. We are all entitled to our own opinions, our own degree of consciousness and as such; our presence within the world and what we would like to do with it, will differ. While this makes us all unique, unfortunately, it means issues like discrimination, bigotry and prejudice, and their subsequent controversy are inevitable.

The purpose of this blog is for me to project my hopes onto some kind of platform. My hope is to promote an ethical, clean, responsible and sustainable way of being. A conscious culture.

With that being said, I hope for this post to be of a lighter nature. Less about the disputation and more about the delish.

I by no means fancy myself as a chef, but that is the beauty of the recipe below. If I can make it, you can make it!

This vegan pokè bowl packs flavour and protein and is guilt free in more ways than one:

  • No animals were harmed in the making of this meal.
  • It is actually healthy!

 

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Let’s Begin!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Block of tofu (Must be extra firm as you want your tofu to be crispy)
  • Cucumber
  • Avocado
  • Carrots
  • Roasted seaweed (I used the wasabi flavoured but whichever you prefer).
  • Brown rice (This can be substituted for any grain, like quinoa, or if you would like a carb free meal, just add extra veg!)
  • Frozen edamame
  • Sesame seeds (I used a mixture of black and white but either will do)Spring onion
  • Pickled ginger
  • Soy sauce (Tamari if gluten free)
  • Sesame oil
  • Maple syrup
  • Agave
  • Sriracha
  • Dry white wine
  • Rice vinegar
  • Tomato Paste

 

Method

If you would like to add a carbohydrate to your pokè bowl, begin by boiling your grain of choice.

Then, slice your tofu into small cubes (I sliced my block of tofu into 4×3 pieces)

Heat two tablespoons of sesame oil in a pan over medium to high heat. Once the oil begins to “crackle” place your tofu into the pan.

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You want the tofu to become golden, which means cooking for about 5 minutes on each side. In the meantime, make the sauce which will pack the punch (vegan protein makes you strong too!)

 

Mix:

  • 2 tablespoons of soya sauce
  • 3 tablespoons of maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons of dry white wine
  • 1 teaspoon of tomato paste
  • 5 tablespoons of Sriracha (less if you don’t enjoy spicy food)
  • 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar

 

While your tofu is going for gold, begin to chop your vegetables. Think small and neat! Set aside.

 

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Once the tofu is brown on both sides, add your sauce to the pan.

 

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Eventually, the sauce will reduce to a sticky consistency and you will be left with a sweet and sticky crispy tofu!

Set aside and steam your edamame (I bought mine still in the shell.)

I didn’t have a steamer, so I used a nifty trick and placed the edamame in a sieve and balanced it over a pot of boiling water.

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While your edamame are steaming, place about a tablespoon of sesame seeds in a dry pan (1 tablespoon per bowl, so increase if you are making more than one.) Shake the pan every 30 seconds or so until the seeds begin to toast, they will begin to go a little golden. This takes about 3 minutes on low heat.

 

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In between, you can begin with your easy dressing which will be drizzled over the final product:

  • 2 tablespoons of soya sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of Sriracha (again, less if you prefer less spicy)
  • 1 teaspoon of sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoon of agave nectar

You are now ready to prepare your pokè bowl, this is the fun part! Put your creative side to good use to add a whole new dimension of eating mindfully.

I like to place my ingredients in their own separate sections around the bowl. Your grain can be your base with your vegetables, edamame and crispy tofu arranged in segments above it.

Then, sprinkle your toasted sesame seeds and chopped spring onion on top, tear the roasted seaweed into rough squares and sprinkle like glitter!

Add some pickled ginger as a garnish for freshness.

Lastly, drizzle your dressing over your pokè bowl.

Photograph, Instagram and enjoy!

 

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If food makes you as happy as it makes me, you are in for elation!

Until next time,

Shari

Photo credit goes to the amazing Ricky Want @wantricky

 

Femi-nice or Femi-nazi?

 

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Namaste,

This morning I was reading an article in the September 18th issue of the Time magazine- Firsts: Women Who are Changing the World.

 Nothing makes me happier than reading about women who have not only broken through the glass ceiling but soared way beyond it. These women are proving that things are changing and that women are now given the opportunity to make and remake the world. We are allowed to have an influence.

But, while reading this article, I couldn’t ignore the prissy little voice at the back of my head saying “Would there ever be a feature titled “Men who are changing the world”?”

There are many men who are doing amazing things in the development of our world for the advantage of different genders, sexualities, cultures and so on. However, I couldn’t help but to think that the fact that there was such a feature to begin with, proves that inequalities of the genders still exist. Women are acknowledged for making their mark because it’s rarity makes it worthy of praise.

Shit! Does this make me a feminazi? Why can’t I just be proud to read about these advancements in gender equality?

Of course I am proud, I am simply acknowledging that there are still plenty glass ceilings waiting to be shattered. Actually, plenty glass ceilings that shouldn’t exist in the first place (but that’s a story for another day!)

Being called a feminist is loaded with negative connotations to the point where it becomes an insult. A person who is labeled as a feminist can be equated to a radical extremist; a terrorist. Dare I say, a femin-nazi?!

The term femi-nazi has recently begun to circulate in the mainstream media. This term compares a woman (or man’s!) efforts to fight for gender equality to that of the Nazi regime. Ultimately, comparing the fight for the rights of gender equality and democracy to genocide. The genocide of 11 million people.

WHAT.

Now, we have to mention those girls who refuse to wear bras because it’s a consumerist expectations of a male market. The women who refuse to shave their legs because the razor was initially marketed for men until there was an opportunity to use women to further extend their target market. The women who believe that makeup is merely to aesthetically please the male gaze and therefore do not apply it. The list goes on….

Everybody is placed on a different continuum on the scale of radicalisation and we have to admire and praise everybody who fights for the progression of our world in whichever way they believe will be the most effective.

All I am saying is, there is a way to be a femi-nice! A high heel, lipstick wearing diva, whose actions are directly linked to striving for an equal society, for herself and for her ‘sisters’.

In Chimamanda Mgazi Adichie’s We Should all be Feminists, she quotes , “The higher you go, the fewer women there are.”

Until this pattern breaks, those numbers are doomed to shake.

How can we change this pattern?

I believe that parenting, and the ways in which we are conditioned into being, based on our gender, sets the tone for this imbalance.

At birth, before we are even able to open our eyes, the doctor peeks between our legs and with that, our social destiny is determined. From then on, the boys are swaddled in blue blankets and the girls in pink blankets and so it begins….

From then, we are conditioned to perform a very specific masculinity or femininity based on our sex. Men are expected to epitomise strength. Their manliness forces them to fear vulnerability and cowardice.

Women? In some sense, we have to cater to this fear. The more that men need to prove their masculinity and strength, the more subordinate us women are forced to become.

“We grow up to be women who are taught to silence ourselves and not say what we really feel and mean” (Adichie) ,to cater to this fear; to maintain this masculinity.

Women are taught that compromise is “just what we do.” (Adichie)

The inequality between the genders begins to translate into competition between women. Women learn that we have to compete for the attention of men.

The result? A gender that can really do with some lovin’!

To again quote Andiche,  What if we were to stop internalising and unlearn these gender expectations and base leadership on innovation, creativity and ambition? While in the days of the caveman, the strongest (biologically, the male) would undeniably be the leader, as the survival of the followers was based on his strength. Today, strength is not what makes leaders, and the qualities that do make leaders are exclusive to the hormones that one possesses.

As women, let’s start small by loving each other. By proving that there is no need to compete. Let’s be female- loving rather than male -hating. We don’t need to be ungroomed extremists to be heard.  Just conscious (seeing a theme here?)

Let’s be proud to fight for our gender. For ourselves,  for our sisters and for one day, our daughters.

“Let’s worry less about fitting into glass slippers and more about shattering glass ceilings.” (Melissa Marchonna, digital marketer for the New York Jets)

Better yet, let’s shatter them to the point of non-existence (while still wearing your favourite pairs of heels).

If you’re as proud as me, you can have a look into buying from the #FeministTeeProject. (Shout out to my supportive boyfriend for buying me a sweatshirt!) R100,00 from the sale of every tee goes to The Frida Hartley Shelter for Women.

 

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Available at: http://www.tshirtsforchange.co.za/

 

Feminist
http://www.tshirtsforchange.co.za/

 

Lastly, please check out my feminist crush Chimamanda Mgazi Adichie’s Ted Talk: We Should all be Feminist. If I didn’t convince you, I’m confident that she will 😉

 

 

Until next Monday,

Shari

Conscious Couture

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Namaste,

In my last post, I had promised that the purpose of this blog was not only to create a stream of conscious thought but also to encourage the lifestyle that is congruent with this new way of thinking.

Enter,

Fashion!

I will admit it, there is a misconception (which I once fell prey to myself) that an ethical lifestyle meets a very specific aesthetic. Without making any presumptions of what this aesthetic may be perceived as in various minds, I am pretty confident that the high heel wearing, makeup manic, eyebrow shaping, flamboyage fanatic, glamorous mademoiselle doesn’t make an appearance.

In the world of the media and the subsequent extreme consciousness which it manifests, we are constantly inundated with images of the aesthetic of the ‘ideal’ style icon.

Does she endorse this ethical lifestyle?

Maybe, maybe not, but who is to say that she couldn’t?

MARKETING.

This is the main offender which stands in the way.

Chanel, Dolce and Gabanna, Burberry, Saint Laurent and so on, are undoubtedly the spawn of haut couture and with that, sell the perception of aristocracy and haut monde. But, not only do the items these fashion houses produce come at an exorbitant monetary price, they also pose a great ethical expense on our conscience.

After research for many years on how to fit into this world without the ethical expense, I would like to chat about Pinatex- Vegan leather.

Admittedly, I often find myself swooning over the couture leather handbags and shoes in department stores and high fashion magazine spreads but I have found an alternative which satiates the swoon.

Pinatex is an innovative, natural and sustainable non-woven textile. Except, rather than the tears behind the textile, it is pineapples! This textile is made from the fibre of pineapple leaves. (Annas-Anam.com)

If you like pina coladas…

Not only am I about to blow your mind by these deliciously guilt free fashion choices, I am going to show you that they can be the perfect alternative to items which constantly bombard our ” I need that to be chic” receptors.

 

The TOTE

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Celine Tote

Price:$2673

Textile: Calf Skin and Lamb Skin

 

Your alternative: 

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Alexandra K 1.5 Blackberry

Price:$344

Textile: Pineapple!

 

The BACKPACK

 

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Mulberry Backpack

Price: $1,295

Material: Cow Leather

 

Your alternative:

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Maniwala Banwa Pinatex Backpack

Price: $450

Material: Pineapple!

 

The CLUTCH

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Pierre Balmain Studded Clutch (Vintage)

Price: $575

Material: Cow Leather

 

Your Alternative

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Taikka Ananas + Clutch

Price: $95

Material: Pineapple!

 

The CHUNKY HEEL

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Raye

Price: $197

Material: Suede Upper with Leather Sole

 

Your Alternative

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Nae Vegan Clau Sandals

Price: $113

Material: Pineapple!

 

The CHELSEA BOOT

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Saint Laurent

Price: $995

Material: 100% cow leather

 

Your Alternative

Meet LAHAY:

 

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Material: Pineapple and Waste

 

Unfortunately, Lahay’s beautiful products are yet to be available on the market.

But with our help, we can change that!

Check out this video to see what LAHAY is all about:

 

If you like what you see, have a look at their Kickstarter page and lets get these boots kicking on our feet!

LAHAY Kickstarter

I hope that this post has been helpful in offering some high fashion and ethical alternatives to those highly converted fashion items which tend to sneak into our consciousness more often than we’d hope!

 

Just a pineapple for your thoughts….

 

Shari