Book # 3 The Kite Runner

Saturday, 29 November 2014

image

Hello everyone,
I'm back with another book review of The Kite Runner by Khalid Hosseini and let's see how the book turned out.

Review
Khalid Hosseini is that gifted writer who knows the art of weaving beautiful spell-binding stories. I've had the opportunity of reading his other novels as well but this book, 'The Kite Runner' is by far his best creation. It is not only an International Best Seller but also a major film.

The story is set amidst the 1970's Afghanistan of two friends Amir and Hassan who grew up together. Amir is a rich boy whereas Hassan is a poor boy and Amir's servant as well but a very loyal friend of Amir. Both of them are quite fond of kite flying and this hobby of theirs changes their lives one afternoon. After the invasion of Russians, Amir is forced to flee to USA but then comes the time of paying back.

The novel not just narrates the gripping story of the two friends but has different tastes including the rich culture and scenic beauty of Afghanistan. The usage of the Afghani language here and there in the book manages to build a warmth which is both vivid and engaging.

Although it is a fictional story but the setting and political scenario is very much true which makes the story irresistible. This novel certainly ranks among the best written stories ever. Khalid Hosseini's description of Amir and Hassan's relationship is fully nuanced and provides a counterpoint to the growing sense of tension which frequently stretches to breaking point.

I highly recommend this book to everyone as it is an unforgettable, extraordinary and powerful tale.

Things To Do Before Going To A Party!

Thursday, 27 November 2014

image

Whenever I know I've been invited to a party, function or a wedding. I make sure that everything I'm going to do that day to get ready should be pre planned. Why? Because it makes getting ready so much easier.

Outfit
First you should make sure that an upcoming occasion is a formal or a casual one. Take out, mismatch, and try your clothes and choose the ones which complements your natural skin color, rather than make you look washed out. My choices would be beige, white, yellow, pink and red. Black doesn't suit me so I haven't included it however it doesn't mean it won't look good on you.

Shoes
On casual events I rely on my extra comfy flats or pumps but if a special affair comes up, I wear stilettos or shoes with at least some heel to give a classy look. I like to match my shoes with my outfit or wear a color that is visible in my attire.

Accessories
Less is more for me because I don't fancy wearing jewelry except earrings. If I'm wearing red, beige or white, I stick to gold colored artificial jewelry whereas with black, pink, gray, yellow or purple, I wear silver jewelry.

Hair
On the day of getting ready, I use hair mask, leave in conditioner and oil serums to make my hair look sleek, frizz free and shiny. I fancy straight looks on casual occasions and wavey or curly looks on important affairs.

Makeup
My favorite part of the bunch. It's all about sporting a minimal eyes and bold lips or smokey eyes and nude lips. Practice various makeup looks before the occasion comes up so that your makeup applying is perfected and take the final plunge on the day to get ready and you'll be happy with the results. I like to wear red lips for special events and my eye makeup is always minimal whereas on casual functions I go for my face but better looks. Make sure all your items are at hand to stop unnecessary rushing.

Skincare
This step should not be ditched because it would be the sole reason behind your fresh and glowy complexion. So cleansing, toning, scrubbing, applying mask and moisturizing is very essential before you step out.

Rest
I would recommend you to have a beauty nap even for 10 to 20 minutes to keep you going before preparing for the party. This way the telltale signs of fatigue would be diminished.

In the end I always ask everyone in my family on how do I look? And make sure that I get my brothers approval even a simple uttered fine or a nod satisfies me because they know when I look great and when not! Keep everything in order and at hand.

Beauty Products Used By Both Male And Female!

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

image

If I started a whole lecture on this topic then this subject knows no bounds. To write about the whole lot of men and women using various beauty products, I need to carry out a thorough and extensive research which I'm not ready to do. So today I will only figure out those products which I've seen myself used by both male and female.

Foundation
You may be curious as to why anyone would want to apply foundation on their face. Women's use of foundation is justified but a man is quite questionable? However I know an uncle of mine who had  serious injuries due to an accident and that accident left scars on his forehead. So to hide those marks he uses foundation everyday.

Shower Gels
One day I bought a new shower gel for myself and within a few days, I noticed the sudden low quantity of my gel without me really using it that much. I got the answer as my brother took a shower and I smelled the familiar scent of my shower gel. After he came out, he asked me to bring the same one for him as well.

Shampoos and Haircare
This is a known fact that houses with especially many inmates buy large quantity shampoos and everybody uses it regardless of their gender. Not to forget my conditioner's sizable quantity is finished within weeks. And I think it isn't hard to guess who the perts were, ofcourse my brothers.

Soaps and Toothpastes
This is used in every household by everyone.

Perfumes and Deodorants
Some days ago I saw my brother spritzing my own perfume and his perfume as well. I laughed at the hilarity of the situation and scolded him for using my worthy perfume. But he told me that mine smelled better than his.

Skincare Products
I use my scrub, face wash, toner, mask and moisturizer everyday and as much as I use it, it is also used tirelessly by my brothers. I do have that angry expression on my face when they sneak my products in the bathroom but at the end of the day I do have a good laugh and it gives me an excuse to buy various new skincare products.

Talcum Powder
This is mostly used in summers and is a cult favorite of me and my entire family to ward off any bad smell.

Lipbalms
I love lip products especially lip balms and apply them whenever I'm feeling like it or before going out. And in the other room, my brother is almost doing the same thing with my own lipbalms.

I told everything that me and my brothers both use but as a general information, the male models, actors or any male who appears on tv has a face full of makeup. You name it and its on their faces, be it mascara, kohl, face powder, concealer, lipstick, blush and God help me what not! And I think looking at a picture of Michael
Jackson even from far would confirm your suspicions. He used to be the one with a bold bright red lipstick.

Kryolan Tv Paint Stick Foundation!

Saturday, 22 November 2014

image

image

image

There was a time when I didn't even own a single foundation and suddenly I had to do a fabulous makeover for my upcoming farewell that I went to my friend to ask for a foundation and she gave me this Kryolan Tv Paint Stick Foundation luckily in my shade. I was genuinely impressed by its coverage and decided to buy my own.

Price
I bought it for 970 PKR from Al Fatah.

Claims
No claims. However ingredients are included.

Shade
Ivory. It comes with a gobsmacking shade range of 250 and I was so confused that I opted for Ivory which is quite a fair shade for me but works well at night.

Packaging
Comes in a 30ml plastic stick and when you twist it from the bottom the foundation comes up. The packaging is simple and secure.

Coverage
It gives a medium to full coverage and with this you don't need to use a concealer on under eye circles but to hide pimples.

Scent
It does contain a weird chemical scent but that's fine by me.

Finish
The finish is natural and matte if you blend it with a damp sponge.

Longevity
It stayed a good 6 hours on me, after that you can notice the foundation vanishing but not completely.

My Thoughts
I use this foundation at night for parties when one can experiment with heavier coverage. This foundation is drying to work with so a damp sponge is a must and this foundation is a big no no for winters as it has a tendency to cling to my dry patches. I only use it in summers and apply it with a light hand as I don't like full coverage foundation. The good thing is it doesn't oxidize and once its set, my skin looks flawless. It can look cakey if it isn't blended properly and is not good for daylight as it looks slightly unnatural. It gives a matte finish which I don't like, I prefer dewy or semi matte foundations. So sometimes my skin does look like a wrung towel with this foundation. it isn't for dry skin beauties but would be more beneficial for oily skins. Overall I would say this is not a bad foundation and comes with an affordable price tag.

Recommendation
To oily skinned beauties.

Would I Repurchase
No

Beware of the fake Kryolan Tv Paint Stick Foundations in the market, ofcourse made by China and would be of a cheap price tag. Whereas the original ones are made in Germany with the price tag as mentioned above.

image

image

Color Studio Professional Blush On Review!

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

image

image

image

Would you just look at the color, isn't it gorgeous? This is what I thought when I grabbed this blush on which doesn't just look pretty but is perfect for this fall com winter weather.

Shade
104 Havana. In the picture above the blush is looking brownish orange but in real its a pretty tea pink color with orange undertones and slight shimmer.

Price
I bought this for 750 PKR from Al Fatah.

Claims
Easy to blend with foundation for any skin tone.
Long lasting effects and light weight application.

Packaging
Comes in a 13g black container with a clear lid. The packaging is nice, secure and travel friendly. I love the fact that it comes with a very reasonable quantity.

Texture
The blush is quite powdery and prone to fall out that results in a dirty pan which I abhor. However the blush is soft to touch and picks up the right amount for application.

Scent
None. A pro for sensitive noses.

Finish
It gives a beautiful copper color to the cheeks, giving a warm sunkissed look without being overpowering or orangey.

Longevity
It stayed a good five hours on me which is really good staying power in my books.

My Thoughts
This blush is really pigmented and perfect for this fall weather. It looks natural and is also good for contouring. It doesn't make me look dark or orange complexioned. It comes with an affordable price tag and amazing quality and quantity. Overall I would say this is a must have blush for autumn.

Recommendation
Go buy it, it suits every complexion especially dusky ones.

Would I Repurchase
Ofcourse, I want to try their other blushes as well.

image

image

My Stress Busters!

Sunday, 16 November 2014

image

There are days when you want to doze off in self pity and never ever want to leave the bed. But there is a system fixed in everyone's mind that knows that somehow you have to perk up and indulge in our frantic daily lives. So when this situation arises, I have somethings that keep my emotions at bay.

Drinking Tea
Tea is a beverage that really calms me and perks my saddened mood fast.

Reading Books
Rereading my favorite books is my best stress reliever and takes my mood somewhere else, probably fantasy, much better than sulking in real life!

Eating Chocolate
Take my advice and munch chocolate when you feel down as it would stop your eyes from welling up. My own experience.

Reading My Favorite Blogs
There is nothing more relieving than keeping up to date with my favorite blogs and the inspiring content and lustful makeup pictures puts a smile on my face.

Applying Makeup
I mostly do this when I'm bored or not feeling exactly joyous. The sight of my makeup boxes and cute makeup items perks up my mood and the feel of a foundation being blended into my skin is so dreamy. A makeup lover like me would understand.

Trying Outfits
Changing clothes, mismatching, and showing off my outfits to my mum, makes me forget my worries and I get lost in a world which solely means dressing up even when you know you are not going out.

Dancing
This may sound silly or you won't be ready to do this when you are feeling emotional. But believe me dancing to your favorite song, opens up those tense muscles and the mind becomes exhilarated.

Sharing
Last but not the least is sharing all those secrets, problems and panic attacks with someone else is much, much better than keeping them bottled and seething from inside.

These were my stress relievers. If you like me do any of these things as mentioned above then please enlighten me or tell about your own stress calmer?

Disappointing Products # 1

Saturday, 15 November 2014

I'm not much of a rambler nor do I find products much disappointing. However these were the items of which I really wanted to throughly tell my opinion of and to warn people not to buy resulting in a complete waste of money.

Suave Sandalwood & Cinnamon Body Lotion
As winter is approaching, our skin tends to need more moisture but this lotion seems to give me less moisture and after even massaging a pump full of this lotion, my skin still feels tight and dry. You can read the review of this lotion here 

Nivea Sparkling White Whitening Facial Scrub
After washing my face with this scrub, my skin looks and feels terribly dry and tight. Also the granules for scrubbing are almost non existent. You can read the review of this scrub  here 

Essence Home Sweet Home Blush
No doubt the double strip blusher looks pretty in the pan but in finish its a loser as it gives a rough finish than a natural one. And the powder crumbles badly. You can read the review of this blush here 

Maybelline Cake Powder
I was thoroughly disappointed when I received this powder in my online shopping parcel. The reason? God, It's terribly small. When I saw the size, I was at a complete loss for words because I wasn't expecting something this bad from Maybelline. You can read the review here 

Godrej Cinthol Soaps
Remember once I bought these soaps in  my essentials . Well they made my skin dry after use and do not lather well.

These are the items I find really disappointing and regret buying them.

Which products disappoint you?

Natural Elements Foam Bath Review!

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Heck! I was in such a hurry while I was shopping that I smelled it, grabbed it and go.Silly me didn't realize that it was a foam bath, not a shower gel.However I have been using this Natural Elements Raspberry And Cranberry Foam Bath as a shower gel and surprisingly I like it.

Price
I bought it for 245 PKR from Al Fatah.

Claims
Relax and let your troubles melt away with this fabulous & fragrant foam bath.Combining the aroma of fruity Raspberry and sweet Cranberry to create the perfect relaxing experience.

Directions
Pour under warm running water.

Packaging
Comes in a simple clear plastic bottle of 750 ml with a black cap.I hate this type of packaging where you have to pour the product out.Pumps are much better, hygenic and doesn't lead to product wastage.

Scent
Oooh it's adorable.It smells exactly like raspberry and cranberry which I love.

Consistency
Not too watery and not too thick either.A good in between consistency.

My Thoughts
It comes with a cheap price and such a enormous quantity that it lasts months which is awesome.It lathers nicely, not really like a shower gel but that's fine by me.The smell is good enough to eat and makes my skin fragrant and soft.However it dries out my skin so moisturizing is a must and the scent doesn't last longer.I don't like the packaging which contributes to product wastage.Overall I would say this is a fine product for the price we pay.

Recommendation
If you are looking for a budget proof but huge quantity product, then buy it.

Would I Repurchase
No, because I'm always experimenting.

Blogs with content that has helped me in my blogging journey!

Sunday, 9 November 2014

image

I've had my fair share of ups and downs while blogging, even to the extent that I thought of tuning off from my blog forever.But I'm glad I didn't because I came across such inspiring and helpful content written by some of the nicest blogs I've found to date that I had to share the love and help those new bloggers who are like me seeking for advice.

 The Lovely Prose 
Becca knows the art of blogging about beauty, lifestyle and giving advice about blogging.Here are some of the nicest posts I've found on her blog. 3 blogging lessons I never expected to learn. , The Photo Edit ,  For when you are feeling uninspired .
Now these posts are only about blogging but Becca writes a great blog with every post worth reading.

Nothin Really Fancy 
Ziva's blog is pretty impressive with fabulous pictures.She has definitely written some blogging content that has helped me a lot.Photography tips & tricks for beauty bloggers ,  Tips for writing/starting a blog ,  15 beauty blog ideas ,  Blogging on a budget ,  Blog design 101 ,  How to be organized-notebooks ,  International blogging 
These are some of the best advices I've read and Ziva's blog isn't just about giving advice.She does amazing beauty posts as well.

Sweet Electric 
You may have heard of this blog and let me tell you that Zoe's blog is an absolute gem in giving blogging advice.She writes about everything a new blogger should do and shouldn't.I can't name the posts I find helpful because I've read all the advice posts she writes and keeps writing.So I would recommend you to check/follow her blog and read what she tells you about blogging and you'll be amazed that blogging is something serious that requires effort and patience.Read this from her blog  For when you're considering quitting .

Autumn Leaves-X 
Now I don't know about the name of the girl behind this blog but believe me her blogging posts are worth reading and she keeps writing such kind of posts.Check out her blog and read. Useful sites for new/established bloggers .She writes a series on this topic that is really helpful. Why everyone needs a break sometimes , Best times to post on social media .Overall this blog is really good and helpful for new bloggers.

These were some of the bloggers whose content I find extremely helpful and are a great source of inspiration.Not only their advice is worth having to look at but the general posts they do are lovely for reading.

Which blogs do you seek for blogging advice?

Food # 2 Shami Kebabs!

Thursday, 6 November 2014

image

Some days ago I made Shami Kebabs with my mother and they were so delicious that I had to share a recipe.Have a look!

Ingredients
1) Beef Mince = 1kg
2) Gram Lentils = 1/2 kg soak in water for an hour.
3) Salt = as required
4) Red Chilli Powder = 1tsp
5) Cloves = 4
6) Cinnamon = 1-2 sticks
7) Black Cardamom = 2-3
8) Cumin Seeds = 1-2 tsp
9) Onions = 4
10) Garlic = 8-10 cloves peeled and chopped
11) Green Chillies = 3-4 chopped
12) Coriander Leaves = a bunch chopped
13) Eggs = 4
14) Water = 1-2 glass

Method
1) Take a pressure cooker and put in beef mince, gram lentils(drained), salt, red chilli powder, cloves, cinnamon, black cardamom, 1 onion chopped, garlic, chopped green chillies and 1 glass water.
2) Give all of it a steam for 10 minutes.
3) Take off the lid and mix it well, then let it cool for an hour.
4) Now chop it all in a chopper.
5) Take the remaining 3 onions and cut them in small cubes.
6) Put the cubed onions, chopped coriander and cumin seeds in the mince mixture.
7) Mix it all with hands.
8) After mixing, take small portions of the mix in your hands and make a ball of about ping pong sized ball, then flatten it on your palm.It should be the size of your palm as in the picture given.
9) Whisk the eggs together.
10) Dip the kebabs in the egg, then fry it in the frying pan from both sides and serve hot with ketchup.

You should be able to make 32-36 kebabs with this recipe.Enjoy:)

Essence XXXL Shine Lipgloss Review!

Monday, 3 November 2014

image

image

Hello Everyone,
When Autumn comes, berry lips and gold eyeshadows can be seen on ramps donned by pretty models.Believe me I love the dark pout but don't have the courage to wear one myself.So I opted for a lighter version with this Essence XXXL Shine Lipgloss.

Shade
15 True Love.A pretty light berry color that gives a tinge of berry with mirror shine.

Price
I bought it for 395 PKR from Al Fatah.

Claims
Ultra shiny lipgloss, moisturizing and non-sticky.It contains carmine which maybe an issue for my vegan readers.

Packaging
Comes in a sleek plastic container of 5ml with a sponge tip applicator and a shiny silver cap.The packaging is simple yet pretty.

Longevity
It lasted for 2 hours on me without eating/drinking but with eating/drinking included, it hardly lasts an hour.Tell me which lipgloss lasts like a lipstick? None!

Scent
Yum, it has a candylike almost raspberry smell which I love.

My Thoughts
I am so fond of the applicator because it helps to distribute the product evenly.The lipgloss is really moisturizing and non-sticky, even if your hair gets stuck in the gloss, believe me it wouldn't irritate you which I find really irksome about lipglosses.Even when the lipgloss vanishes, it gives a nice glossy look to the lips keeping them moist and not bared of all the color.It easily fits into my bag and doesn't leak or loosen.It does transfer but in a light shiny sort of way.For such an affordable price, it is an amazing value.

Recommendation
Buy it, wouldn't make a hole in your pocket and would serve the purpose nicely.

Would I Repurchase
Yes, I'm thinking of making a collection of all Essence Lipglosses as they're highly praised in the beauty blogosphere.

Which Essence Lipglosses you like?

image

Makeup Revolution Redemption Iconic 1 Palette Review!

Sunday, 2 November 2014

image

image

image

image

The famous dupe of Urban Decay Naked 1 palette is finally in my hands.Now I don't know how close their similarities are but from what's been roaming around the beauty blogosphere, I can safely say that Makeup Revolution has nailed it, not just with eyeshades but with the quality as well.

Price
I bought it for 950 PKR from an online shopping website  just4girls.pk 

Claims
No claims and no eyeshadow names but ingredients are included and this palette is designed and developed in London UK.

Packaging
The palette comes in a black sturdy casing of 14g with a transparent lid which makes eyeshadows visible from the outside.I love the packaging as it looks sleek and chic,perfectly fits into my handbag and the lid doesn't come off.

Shades
There are total 12 shades in this palette ranging from light neutral ones to more bronze ones.I love the warm undertones these eyeshades contain except the two at the right side which is a black and grayish blue type shade.This palette contains 3 matte shades and 9 shimmer ones.

Texture
They are absolutely buttery to touch except the matte ones feel a little powdery.

Pigmentation
As you can see the light shades are less pigmented and the dark ones are more pigmented however all of these shades have a good building power.They are a dream to apply, blend and smoke it to your own liking and there is very less product fall out.

Longevity
They lasted for 3 hours on my lids which isn't good in my books.However I haven't tried it with a eyeshadow primer yet.

My Thoughts
I adore the fact that I can don various eye looks with this palette and it has an array of beautiful eyeshades that can take you from day to night.It comes with a black foam applicator which I like to use because I've seen and tried worse applicators than this one.I like the shimmery eyeshades and the color pay off is awesome.This palette has certainly made my mood for wearing eyeshadows.It has an affordable price tag and amazing quality.The bad lasting power and shimmer eyeshades maybe an issue for you but not me.Overall I would say this product is a steal and worth all the hype its getting.

Recommendation
Buy it, it has much better quality than some local palettes out there.

Would I Repurchase
Yes, ofcourse and I can't wait to try the other versions as well.

image

Suave Sandalwood & Cinnamon Body Lotion Review!

Saturday, 1 November 2014

image

Hello Readers,
Autumn is the most awaited season but it certainly has its downsides as well.Such as it plays havoc on the hair and skin and moisturizing is a term we shouldn't be lazy about in this season so I decided to buy this Suave Sandalwood & Cinnamon Body Lotion.Let's see if it was a good buy or not.

Price
I bought it for 336 PKR from Al Fatah.

Claims
This unique formula provides delicious moisturization, leaving your skin looking beautifully moisturized.The sensual scent of Sandalwood and Cinnamon will leave your skin smelling soft and silky.

Packaging
Just a simple white plastic bottle of 532 ml with a silver pump.I favor pumps more than flip flop caps.The bottle is secure and no leakage problem.

Scent
It isn't good and isn't bad either but I don't like it much.

Consistency
God! It's abhorable.It feels like I'm literally massaging milk into my skin because the consistency is very watery.Beware while pumping out the lotion.

My Take
The claims are completely made up because it doesn't provide delicious moisturizing, it isn't a unique formula and the smell is nothing to write home about.It takes forever to sink into the skin and the moisturized effect is fair, not at all a good lotion for winters but yeah is nice for summers.I use this on my face only but it isn't suitable for using on body.You get a good quantity for such an affordable price but let me tell you I'm using this lotion a lot just to finish it quickly and to find something more worthwhile.There is one thing about this lotion that I like a lot, it has made my pimples a lot less small in size and my skin is starting to look more clear and poreless.It isn't greasy and hasn't irritated my sensitive skin.Overall I do not like this lotion because I do not enjoy applying it to my face.

Recommendation
No, its not good for winter.

Would I Repurchase
No, I'm going to buy my trusty old St Ives Lotion.