Mandara Spa Giveaway Winners

Thanks a tonne for participating guys! Over a 1000 entries - I'm overwhelmed. Will definitely do another giveaway very, very soon so keep your eyes peeled.

The winners for this giveaway are:

Christina 'Crystal' Brown (@krissieangel)
Jenny Morgan (kimmie7782)
Holly (@dancingqueen_ox)
Zoe Goulding (@tiawanawana)

If you could drop me an email with your Full Name & Postal Address to getgawjus@hotmail.com, I'll forward the deets to Mandara Spa who will then directly dispatch your goodies :)


Grow Gorgeous Hair Growth Serum - Tried & Tested!

I thought I'd review this particular hair serum after I had used it up completely to fully form my thoughts on it. However, quite a few people have asked me by now what I feel about it. Although a 'hair growth' serum which is actually quite a big claim to make cannot be judged by using it for just a few weeks, I thought I'd jot down my first few thoughts on this so called magical potion and what better place than a blog post to do so.

So first off, you can look up the scientific bits yourself as I'm not the best at explaining them in detail. What I could understand from what I read is that it contains Hyaluronic Acid which we all know would work in this instance to hydrate the scalp and improve any chapped, flaky situation. It also contains the wonderful ingredient collagen which promotes skin cell renewal and shedding of any unwanted, dead skin cells. Meaning new skin on the scalp is produced more often consequently promoting thicker, faster hair growth.  

What I've noticed so far is that my hair has been falling off less since using this serum. Apparently it has ingredients that makes the hair anchor well to the roots and this is something I have been looking for in hair products since years, hence that's surely made me happy. I also noticed my hair looks slightly more fuller and thicker on the whole. Something I've been trying to achieve using this and avoiding heat tools and hair volumising powders which I'm addicted too.

I can't comment on longer hair as that's something I've never had a problem with. I personally am only looking for thicker, fuller and stronger hair which I believe this will help achieve, give it one or two months. I think I'll have to get my hands on another bottle to see how the experiment works.

Also, this is from the makers of Fountain Hyaluronic Molecule and Hand Chemistry Hand Cream, both of which I absolutely adore. I will surely give you guys an update with some images of my hopefully thicker mane when I'm done using one bottle. But for now, I highly recommend you incorporate this in your haircare regimen if you're trying to improve hair growth.

The thin serum is easily absorbable and feels just like water on the scalp so no sticky or greasy residue. Having said that, it's not all roses as you do have to wash your hair if you plan to go outside. I really wish it was a leave-in formula and I could walk out of the door with this slathered all over my tresses while I got on with the day. On the whole, just run to Boots and try this out will you? For £30, it's a steal.



London Beauty Treatments: Skin, Hair, Body et al

If you're a Londoner like myself, you may be aware of the atrocious cost involved in going to the salon, let alone a decent one at that. Whether it be to get your cuticles sorted, hair snipped or get some pampering done to your facial skin, what's guaranteed is that it will cost you a bomb. I know a few non-resident Londoner's who find the city expensive when it comes to London Beauty Treatments and also a few Londoners themselves who'd rather whip up a good concoction of face mask at home and get a bucket full of bubbles going to avoid paying atrocious salon charges.

Having said that, if you can manage to find yourself a good bargain, below are the beauty treatments I recommend from previous experience that you must indulge when in London.

A Luxury Hair Treatment: You'll find these in quite a few salon menus lingering around in the hair department. Of course expect it to vary salon to salon based on what they consider 'luxury', the products/brands they use (from designer to herbal) and what they actually do to your hair in those 30-45 minutes. To my knowledge, there will be hair masks, steaming, intense nourishing, locks glossyfing, scalp cleansing jazz involved.

Guinot Facials: Apparently the facial of choice applied to models skin for pre-runway prep. Why you've got to hunt this beauty treatment down in London is because only a handful of salons in the UK actually deliver the french born facial, most of which are spread out in London. Using luxe skin care products, highly trained therapists and some trusty electronic gadgets, you're bound to expect polished results. What I love about this facial is how it was developed by the son of a Cosmetic Surgeon who wanted to achieve similar anti-ageing results but without the need of surgery. Clever eh?

Teeth Whitening: Having come across absolutely no one who would disregard the thought of having their teeth whitened, I had to squeeze this in my must-try London Beauty Treatments. Apparently these can be expensive outside of London or so I have heard. Personally I can vouch for teeth whitening as I have given it a shot last year and was surprisingly pleased at flaunting my pearly whites. Being a non-teeth-smiler and hugely conscious about my teeth (goes back to braces in childhood), it was quite a change that I was now actually happy with them! Opt for ones that deliver guaranteed results, last for at least a year and use some sort of LED light equipment as well as non-peroxide gels.


TeeIsland: 50 shades of white

I love myself a chuckle or two when it comes to humorous quotes on clothing. Since college days till now, I've been a huge fan of graphic print, slogan tees and fortunately, they're back in trend this Spring/Summer 2014 as witnessed on runways and in 'just-arrived' collection of most online fashion stores. Whether it's for lounging around at home paired with pyjama bottoms, donned for a much needed run in the park or paired with leather look leggings for a fashion statement, there's just so much you can do with it, especially slogan tees.

These days I'm loving myself some white tees as I noticed I don't enough of the versatile colour in my wardrobe. Come Spring/Summer I really want my wardrobe pieces to look bright and fresh instead of gloomy and grungy hence after stumbling upon TeeIsland recently, I felt the need to share my favourite picks.

The dorky cat with the hilarious shades, 'chillin' written in leopard print, the geeky explanation of aloha and the cheeky reference to 'end' in all those words would simply be an uber cool addition to my wardrobe. Now that I think about it harder, I have nothing close to it in my current clothes stash besides a few worn out, disney tees from Primark. Serious update needed!

I love the rolled up sleeve, the baggy fit and the overall laid back aura it oozes. I wound't really mind sporting a fitted white tee but my muffin top and lack of flat abs doesn't allow me to, leading me to favourite a good baggy tee instead. Having said that, I don't want to look dated or still stuck in the 90's either hence opting for on-trend tees like these is more of a fail safe option. TeeIsland have had a redesign and a relaunch so definitely check them out for some fashion inspiration. Oh and they also do backpacks which are the rage these days

If you ever thought a white tee was boring, here are some fun ways to style it for Spring/Summer from fabsugar.com.

Twenty Forever Eau De Perfume

This is the girliest looking and smelling fragrance I've ever come across. If you like a good black and pink combination, an uber cute yet sleek looking bottle and the most feminine smelling scent ever, without being overpowering - you need this in your life! I didn't even realise it was from the Make Up Store. I've tried out make-up goodies from them before but had not idea (even after the huge 'M' carved onto the bottle), that this was from them. It could be because I couldn't read the brand name anywhere and thought Twenty Forever was it's sole name.

Just in time for Valentine's Day, I feel this would make the perfect present for a loved one. No girl will not be swept of the floor with this option. Of course you can go for the traditional luxe glass bottles and cult-favourite designer brands but if you want to gift something unique and thoughtful, I'd say this would be your best bet guys. Small touches like the pink spray nozzle, the message plastered onto the bottle in pink and the drawer like outer packaging just makes it stand out from the rest.

If you don't have a date this 14th Feb, worry not as you don't need someone to gift you this. If you're on the hunt for a sweet and fresh perfume for Spring/Summer with a musky, elegant dry down, treat yourself to this gorgeous baby and I promise you won't regret. I personally am a little tired of the regular woody, heady scents that we indulged in this Winter and can't wait to revamp my dresser with some fresh, Summery scent goodness, starting with this of course!

What I can clearly sniff is Black Currant, White Orchid, Rose and Musk but apparently there's also the added Bergamot, Freesia, Apple Blossom, Sandalwood and Amber. Quite a killer combination eh? It starts off with a sweet floral and fruity burst and dries down to a more muted and grown up musky base. Quite a long lasting one is something I should point out. It's somewhere in between the playful and grown up category without being obvious in either of the two departments.

Available for £37 at www.makeupstore.se


TangTracker – New Internet Activity Monitoring App

If like me you think children today are too smart for their own good, then you’ll like the idea of this Internet Activity Monitoring App. Created for vulnerable people in particular children and teens, the App lets the parent or the guardian of the vulnerable person in question, in constant contact with their child’s phone. How it does that is by enabling geo tagging which allows you to monitor where your child is as well as an SOS option where the child is able to contact the parent at just one click in case of an emergency. 

TangTracker also allows parents to keep a tab on their child’s browsing history, online security as well as text messages based on pre-defined keywords, such as ‘sex’ for instance. Of course it is then up to the parents to filter these texts and go into detail as required based on their discretion but at least it provides a starting point for guardians of vulnerable teens to have some sort of tab upon their phone and web activities.

What’s modern about the App is that it requires both parties consent as both the parent and the child’s phone will need to be equipped with the App and allow phone A  to be able to track B for instance. If a child doesn’t agree, well then tough luck and you’ll have to let them face the world on their own. But if they do agree, I feel it’s one step forward towards protecting them from online abuse, peer pressure, bullying, blackmail and meeting cyber strangers which according a recent report, a fifth of primary school children agree to have met!

Being parents, the thought of kids coming across porn online can also be quite disturbing and the App can act as a starting point by allow you to use pre-defined keywords and monitor online activity on the phone to ensure they only come across age appropriate web content.

Personally, I feel it’s not intrusive at all considering that all parents are looking for is their child’s safety and wellbeing, both mentally and physically. As long as it helps them stay away from unnecessary cyber gibberish, I’d feel I have gotten the Apps money’s worth, although I believe it’s free to download. I am a 90’s kid so I guess my opinion on this App doesn’t count as it was incredibly safer to go online during those days and honestly speaking, I even received a phone at 16 which wasn’t even a smartphone!

However, I have a handful of nieces and nephews who are or will be teenagers soon and gauging their mind set and decision making abilities, TangTracker would help parents, older siblings or guardian by leaps and bounds in giving them a good night’s sleep.

Cargo Swimmables Eye Pencil

I've had these babies since so long but not sure why I haven't mentioned them before. These are Swimmables Eye Pencils by Cargo which you can easily find on Beautybay.com now. I personally have always been a huge fan of coloured eye pencils but shied away from them as they usually would smudge and smear easily or either have crappy pigmentation. This one is neither of them. 

They are not only super creamy and a delight to glide through the lash line but also mimic the texture and consistency of a liquid or gel liner which makes me love them even more. Of course each to it's own but I personally don't like matte finish liners and would rather have them glossy, fresh looking. Okay so although they appear kind of matte in the image above, I promise you they're not. 

I tried them on the water line and couldn't get it to apply so well. If you stay in hot climates or are planning to don coloured eye liners this Spring/Summer, check out these ones that currently retail for £12 a pop with free delivery. They do not smudge, be it rain or shine! I actually scrub them off with an eye make-up remover as face wipes just don't cut it. 


Hydraluron Moisture Boosting Mask

You know I'm a huge fan of products by Indeed Labs. They are the only brand whose skincare actually works when it comes to hydration and anti-ageing in my opinion. Of course there's others which are not too bad either but for a high street Boots brand, I'd say stick to Hydraluron if you are lacking in the young skin department.

My mum honestly owns every product from Indeed Labs and uses and repurchases them regularly. They're not pricey too and are absolutely affordable for what they are. I've tried their Hydraluron Serum before and still have some lying around in my skincare stash. Although not a regular user of it considering my combination-blemish prone skin, I do resort to it in weeks when my skin feels crusty and parched. Not a glamorous look at all!

I love that you get 4 sachets of sheet masks in the packet and they're all individually wrapped so there's no chance of them drying out. My sisters skin was going through a rough patch recently where it has dried out extremely and looked chapped and flaky. As a guinea pig, we tried this out on her to see how her skin reacted and not so surprisingly, it restored all lost moisture and made it calm down.

The results of the mask continued till a day or two and helped resolve the skin situation she said quite a few other potent skincare products couldn't budge. I've tried it too and even though I have combination skin, it's great to combat cold days and central heating damage to the skin, especially after a long day at work. It's quite cooling and refreshing to lay on the skin and immediately puts me to sleep.

At an affordable £13.33 a pop, I feel it works considerably better for dry, dehydrated and mature skin types compared to your usual Asian brands when it comes to sheet masks. Give it a go!