Wardrobe basics: 10 things you need!

I know that it seems quite confusing sometimes when it comes to buying clothes these days with the fast fashion moving at a scary rate; new collections keep dropping on a daily! Buying trendy, cheaply made pieces seems to make sense nowadays but I believe that they aren’t necessary in your wardrobe unless you know you will get your wear out of them. Buying just to buy is pointless and not only makes a dent in your wallet but also a dent on our planet. It is quite important to invest in good quality pieces that will always be necessary to have around in your wardrobe and those are the basics; the building blocks and foundation of a good solid wardrobe. Basically, that’s where your big money should go! We women tend to fall for adverts quite easily and feel like we need to own a lot of shit, but truly we don’t…when you have the basics down, you can easily mix and match whatever you want with them…plus you will be at a point where you no longer have to stress about what to wear. Here are the staples I think every woman should have in her wardrobe:

 

* Leather Jacket *

A leather jacket is the epitome of badass when it comes to fashion; it adds a certain edge to an outfit without being too out there or too in your face and what I love about a leather jacket is that you can take it from day to night and still look like a million dollars. Investing in good quality leather will ensure that you keep this piece in your wardrobe for years and years…and what’s awesome about leather is that the more you wear it the more it will be amazing as it takes your shape and you’re individuality; you basically become the jacket and the jacket becomes you. Make sure to pick something that is classic but still has a something something to describe you and make you stand out. I would say go with black because you can easily mix and match it with any other item in your wardrobe, but if you feel like you can do another color easily, then go for it! Don’t let anyone stop you!

* Crisp White Shirt *

Whatever your work field is, you will always need a basic white shirt. A good quality classic white button-down shirt will always save you when it comes to meetings or dates or any other important outing. A basic white shirt can take your outfit ten notches up and will make you go from drab to fab in no time. You will look crisp, clean and ready to take on the world! This basic will always be in trend and will always be necessary, so make sure to invest in a good cotton shirt or even silk, whatever your preference, but just make sure that the fit is right and the buttons stay closed! You can never go wrong with having a button down shirt in your wardrobe. If you are in a field that requires you to wear shirts on a daily, then go crazy with the colors and give yourself plenty of options.

* Black Dress *

The little black dress is basically a no brainer and every woman should own at least one LBD in her wardrobe for emergencies. This is a basic piece that you can take from day to night easily without fuss or hassle; just make sure to accessories accordingly and you’re set! Make sure to buy a dress that you’re really in love with and that suits your body type; like that you know that it’ll stay in your wardrobe for a long time. Black dresses are super versatile so don’t be afraid to drop a little more coin into buying one.

Tailored Blazer

This is must even if you don’t work in an office on a daily because it takes any outfit to a whole new level of professionalism. I honestly always feel like I can take on anything when I wear a good tailored blazer; it makes such a difference in the way you hold yourself and the way you present yourself to the world. Making sure that the fit is snug and just right is crucial to owning a blazer. Owning a blazer in a basic color is always a good idea as it can be a versatile piece to wear even over evening dresses to add a little je ne sais quoi element to your look. If you feel like owning two or three in different patterns or colors, go for it because you can never go wrong with them.

* Pumps: Black, Nude & Red (or any pop of color you choose) *

You definitely need a good pair of basic black pump in your wardrobe…but I feel like you also need a good nude pump and a good red pump…maybe not necessarily red, but a good pop of color is needed because you can add this to a boring outfit and make it ten times better and more interesting. Owning black pumps is a must for any woman! Neutral, goes with anything, perfect for work and special outings! Basically a good quality made pump is the be all end all to any outfit! It is the finishing touch to your whole look and making sure that your shoes are right will make you look amazing and then some!

* Dark wash denim *

Dark wash denim is genius to own in your wardrobe; especially when it is tailored and good quality. Don’t pay for jeans that don’t fit you snugly in the right places and certainly don’t pay for jeans that stretch so much that become super baggy when worn. Choose a cut that you are comfortable in but make sure it is dark wash because it’s more versatile and can even work for the office when worn with smart pieces such as a beautiful button down shirt. Dark wash jeans fit a bunch of different scenarios and so don’t shy away from spending a little more on a good pair. Plus dark wash is a lot more flattering than light wash.

* Trousers (Black or whichever color you feel comfortable in) *

We all need a good pair of tailored trousers; this is pretty much a no brainer. Trousers are essentials to own because they smarten your look whenever you need. They’re like a trusted friend that will never do you wrong! Always there and always by your side to make you look elegant, feminine and put together. Trousers will get you through the week; it’s a Monday through Sunday piece; you can easily wear it to work or even to brunch…just make sure to buy a pair that fits you right and accentuates all your good parts. A black pair would be a must-have but if you want to own other colors, it wouldn’t be wrong. Trousers are smart and they’re a great investment!

* Plain White Tee *

No closet is complete without a plain white tee; however, there are different types of qualities…a million cut and a million styles. No piece is more versatile than this item; it is pretty much your holy grail! Always make sure to have a white tee on hand because you can dress it up or down, wear it to work or on a night out. You can style it in many different ways and make it your own. Tucking it into pants, skirts, jeans, you can choose to put it with whatever item you own and you will look amazing for sure.

* Ballet Flats *

Pretty much like the pumps, ballet flats are a must because they’re smart but can be casual too depending on how you style them. Let’s not forget that they are also very comfortable. They can add a little pizazz to your outfit depending on the style you decide to go with. Pointy toe, sling-backs, Mary-Janes…you choose what best suits your lifestyle and you’re all set.

* Evening Dress, Fancy Skirt or Jumpsuit *

Depending on your lifestyle and your own liking, you should have something fancy to wear to special events. Choose a piece to make your own that helps sets you apart from others; something elegant, something feminine and well-made. I would personally go with a jumpsuit because you can never go wrong with jumpsuits. Buying a jumpsuit in a plain color can be very versatile for an evening out…you just have to style it with the right accessories. Not many people would go with a jumpsuit and this is why it would be a great investment because you will have something special to be in. Evening pieces don’t necessarily have to be bedazzled from head to toes; having interesting details in those garments such as cut and stitching can make a whole difference. Choosing a dress or a skirt can be easier as they are available pretty much everywhere you go, just make sure that the cut suits your body type and with that you’ll be set.

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Day to day dressing becomes easier when you have the foundations of a basic wardrobe. Having these essentials available to you at all times help you build a wardrobe that you are proud of and that you can easily dress out of…when you have those essentials, you simply build around it so that you can easily mix and match other pieces to have many different looks. You don’t need a big closet to dress pretty and nice, you just need good quality items that will see you through and will be your best friend for a long time. Investing in those pieces is important so that you don’t change them too often or throw them away. Be sure to have items that please you and make you feel extra special.

 

Fruit trend: yay or nay?!

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I guess we all had to be ready this summer for an extra dose of vitamins with all the fruity fashion stocked up in stores…my sister and I were walking around a couple of shops these past weeks and we have noticed how large the fruit fashion trend has gone up. I, for one, ain’t against it…I think it’s cute and it livens up an outfit so effortlessly but then again, it isn’t everyone’s cuppa tea. The fashion industry repeats itself when it comes back again and again to relive a certain trend. The fruit and vegetable trend has woken up a few years back when Dolce & Gabbana launched their 2012 summer collection; it had the most colourful veggie inspired pieces anyone could ever dream of. PS: D&G always kill it when it comes to design. Then we were invaded by the whole pineapple trend around 2014 and then it kept rolling from there when watermelons and lemons and limes started making way into stores little by little right after the lemon D&G collection dropped in 2017. What do you guys think of all these prints? Do you like them or you can’t stand them?? Has the fashion industry taken it too far with these prints and should they take a rest? Would love to hear your thoughts on that one!

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I know I am kindda into it. I always loved big bold prints….not too many floral make me happy but a good odd print is always nice. I remember I had a huge obsession with anything bird print at one point; it was all the rage I tell ya. I once spotted lemon printed pants at Zara and wanted to buy them but didn’t have the guts because they were too bold for me at the time and now I kindda regret not buying them because I am sure I would have worn them loads…but I guess it just wasn’t meant to be. Lemons and cherries have always kept me intrigued and owning a good pair of cherry printed tops would be ideal at the moment to make any bland outfit more interesting. Or having a cherry-centric necklace would be soooo Romy and Michele.

 

Don’t think this trend is going anywhere anytime soon, so get your fruity prints on and enjoy looking like a fruit salad while you can!!!

 

Top 8 Tips on self-care

As I have spent the last few weeks running around like a headless chicken prepping for the arrival of the baby, I forgot to take the time to take care of little old me. I know that I won’t get much time to do so after baby come for a few months until I am all settled. So I figured will take the time now for myself and enjoy it while it lasts. Spending time with my husband (who’s here for baby’s birth) is giving me the nudge to put it all aside and focus on us but mostly me. There is nothing wrong with a little selfish time to take care of your own needs, besides if you’re happy, then everyone else around you will be happy. You will radiate positive energy and that is always inspiring.

Here are my top tips on self-care and how you get to enjoy yourself and be all relaxed.

1) SKIN CARE

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That is like my holy grail of self-care. I am not going to lie; I am a huge sucker when it comes to skincare. I like to splurge because I feel like if I am good in my own skin, then I am more confident and I feel like I can conquer the world. Good skin gives me the push to put myself out there. I know I struggled in that department quite a bit when I was younger, but I learned that when working with good products (pricey or not), you will achieve your goal to perfect skin. I am super indulgent when it comes to masks and I like to do it whenever I have time. Back when I was single, it was a daily ritual for me…but since getting married, I have slacked a bit, perhaps because I have less free time on my hands. However, I vowed to get back to it, because it makes me happy! So ladies, mask away! Trust me, you’ll feel better!

2) WATER

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This is pretty obvious but I tend to forget to hydrate and it just makes me feel sluggish, lethargic and causes me to have headaches. Well, headaches no more because I am getting back on track. I find it quite hard sometimes to replenish on the H2O but it is the essence of our existence. I sometimes go a full day not even drinking 1 cup of water and I realize it is bad for me…but I just don’t think of it. However, now, I have a refillable water bottle with me and I spend most of my day with it in my hands so that I remember to drink up and stay hydrated. It not only helps me with headache, but it also helps me with my skin. It’s much more hydrated and smooth; I don’t feel like a lizard anymore. Staying hydrated helps your body detox hence giving you more energy to be out and about doing your thing!

3) EXERCISE

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I have always been an active girl…since I was little and I am not about to let it go. However, since hitting the third trimester, feeling heavy and tired weren’t helping me in that department. The least I would do these days is take a walk and trying to get to 10 000 steps as a goal. Most day, not gonna lie, I don’t get to my goal, but at least I know I tried. I always loved to exercise as a means to detox my brain from bad thoughts and bad energy—yes it was also for my body, but mostly for my mental health. I was always a pretty angry child and stress was eating me up, so the only way I found to let that all go was through working out. I did everything anyone could possibly do, like zumba, pilates, yoga, dance, you name it!!! As long as I move, I am happy and I cannot wait to get back into working out, because I always feel much healthier and much happier. Work out ladies! Work out for your mental health!!!

4) READ

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When I was little, I remember eating up books for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I loved loved loved reading! It was our things as a family when we were little…going to the library every weekend was a ritual and we all loved it so much. As the years went by, I slowly started losing that habit and it makes me quite sad that I let it go. Reading feeds your soul! It transports you to worlds undiscovered and it helps your imagination flow and your brain to be in working gear rather than being lazy. Taking the time to read before bed helps you relax and forget about the burdens you may carry. Taking the time to read a book daily is a challenge but a good one because you know you’re doing yourself some good. I am slowly getting back into it and I am enjoying it so far.

5) DO WHAT YOU LOVE

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I have always been an advocate about pushing people into doing what they love because I know what it feels like. That pure beautiful raw rush that you get when you do something you love is irreplaceable. We live only once and taking the time to do something you love, whatever it may be is fulfilling and satisfying. Living your dreams is not impossible, we just need to let go of our fears and our limitations. Impossible is nothing! I try as much as possible to have a little list of things I wish to do and cross it off slowly and man is it amazing to know that you can! Even if it seems silly to others, do it anyway. Like blogging, or vlogging or riding a bike even, whatever it may be, do it for you and only you and never listen to what others have to say. It is easy for others to judge you…or humans judging each other in general, but fuck it and live the moment and live your dreams because you never know when your time will come. Even though I am going to be a mom very soon, I will still have that list close to my heart and accomplish whatever I can because I know that the happier I am, the happier my little family will be.

6) MEDITATE

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Very much like exercising for many, meditating is food for your soul. For me, it is what gives me the power and the energy to keep the show going. Taking 30 minutes daily for yourself to pray, meditate or simply reflect on your life and your purpose should be enough to keep you happy. For me it’s praying and I find that when I take the time to pray, I feel less anxious, less stressed and less disoriented. I, like many other women around the world, tend to be very hard on myself and demand a lot more of myself than I can give and that is a sucky attitude to have. We women feel like we need to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders and we want to take care of it all and if we don’t, well we feel like failures. But let me tell you ladies, we do a lot more than men do (not being sexist—its’ just fact), but we still cannot accept it and still want to do more. This is why mediation is important because you take the time to reflect on your life and take the time to love yourself more, appreciate yourself more and respect yourself more.

7) EAT HEALTHY

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Not saying we can’t indulge and eat that greasy burger or eat those crispy fries, I am saying be balanced. Life is not about forbidding yourself from enjoying the bounties given to you; it’s about knowing when to indulge and when to restrain yourself. However, eating healthy keeps your body in check and keeps you active and happy. Eating healthy keeps you from feeling sluggish and tired and that should be your number one priority. Your body is your temple and taking care of it will keep you positive. Besides, eating healthy doesn’t have to be boring, it can be creative and exciting; you just have to learn a few tricks.

8) SLEEP

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Last but not least, sleep! Sleep people!!!! That is probably one thing I am struggling with lately and will struggle with for a little while longer. The less sleep I get, the more tired I feel, the grumpier I feel, and the less motivated I feel. Despite having less sleep, I still try to stay active…but some days I just want to be a couch potato. I suffered from insomnia for the longest time and was able to run on little to no sleep sometimes but lately I have been wanting to cocoon and sleeeepp. But man, I can’t help but feel guilty whenever I feel the need to nap because I feel like I could be more productive to the universe. However, it is good to sleep and when you feel like taking little naps, do so, because when you are rested, your body and mind are stronger and you have the power to do anything you want to do.

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So there you have it ladies and gentlemen, treat yourselves with love and dignity and don’t be afraid to tell yourselves that you’re doing great; it doesn’t mean you’re a show-off or a self-centred asshole, it just means you acknowledge that you are human and that you need a break. There is no harm in taking the time for yourselves and try to live without judgement and negativity. There’s only one life and you deserve to be happy, everyone deserves that!

The crossed dress…

I was going back and forth on buying this dress from Zara; I wasn’t really sure how it would work on me and how it would fit given that I bought it in a size large. I knew that it would be good around my growing 37 week belly but I wasn’t sure how it would be on the rest of my body. Well, the color is what caught my eye to start with, it reminds me of a raspberry ice cream I used to eat when I was little and it was my favourite of all time, so I figured why not just look like a raspberry for the remainder of my pregnancy. I can’t believe there’s not much left till I meet baby girl. This is insane! Time flies by so so fast and it’s really crazy how far I have come…I thought I would never get to the end and now at any moment I will go through this crazy thing called birthing.

Anyway, since I have been color inspired lately, I am continuing on that road because I know that post-partum will be a little dull in the fashion department since I would be focused on keeping baby alive. Besides, this could potentially be my last outfit! Who knows?!! Here’s how I styled the dress…

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I didn’t want to wear a cardigan or a jacket since humidity has been quite crazy lately…so I figured a thin bodysuit would be best. This is also an item from Zara which I have purchased a few months ago and they no longer have it in stores….but what drew me to it was the fact that it seemed so psychedelic 70s…right up my alley; as you all know by now. Since the top and dress were pretty colourful, I decided to keep the accessories pretty muted in color so that the focus doesn’t stray away from this gorgeous dress. What I loved most about it is the tie at the front. They are basically long straps that you can tie any which way you want…I ended up passing it through the bottom to get a tighter fit on the dress which made my belly look cute.

My ankles are severely (not kidding) swollen and I miss looking at my pretty, sexy feet and so the only thing that works for me at the moment are slippers and even at that, they don’t fit well. Le boo!! The perks of being pregnant….I ended up stealing the bag and necklace from my sissy…that’s her department. She’s got a huge collection of accessories that she has accumulated through the years and it’s so adorable…it’s almost like a little shop. Love that she’s kind enough to lend me her things!

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Even though I am quite ready to give birth, as I want my lungs and bladder back, I think I will miss the feeling of baby kicking in my tummy. I feel like I connected on a deeper level with her since her kicks got stronger…it’s such a weird yet fulfilling feeling and I never thought I would like that.


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The benefits of minimalism

I have come to realize that we humans are a bunch of consumers and it is our duty to change the course of this obsession to help the planet survive longer. I have watched many documentaries lately that show just how far we go to have everything, even though we don’t necessarily need them. Living in Palestine has taught me that filling up my house with unnecessary furniture wasn’t a must and it was a decision I chose to make. Although we had the basics, I still sometimes felt like it was overwhelming when it came to cleaning. I didn’t have 3 sets of dishes or 3 sets of cutlery, only one was enough for my husband and I. It was really nice to know that I wasn’t a hoarder and that my addiction to shopping subsided, I felt like I had more time for what really mattered, which was spending time with my favourite person in the world and making memories.

In today’s post I am sharing my experience when it comes to minimalism and why I think it is better not only for us as humans but also for planet earth.

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1) Planet

This is pretty obvious and everyone should be mindful of this whenever they go shopping. I am not saying do not go shopping ever again, I am just saying to buy only what you need. When you buy less, you consume less, therefore you create less waste and you help create less damage to our planet. It is important to know that lots of our waste is dangerous to the planet’s health. All the clothes we buy and end up not wearing and throwing out, all the furniture we throw because we’re too lazy to up-cycle and all the plastic and non-biodegradable waste that end up polluting our soil and our waters…that all affect our future generations, therefore we need to be more aware of what we consume so that we improve our quality of life.

2) Freedom

What I mean by freedom here is that you will just be defined as you and that you are not bound by things around you; that freedom to just live your life liberally and not be a follower or be a massive consumer. You get free time to enjoy life as you want to without burden; you break free from consumerism. We are a generation that prides itself in accumulating possessions and it feels quite disheartening sometimes. I was an impulsive buyer when I was younger and sometimes, after going on a big shopping spree, I would get home and feel sick to my stomach knowing that I willingly spend a huge amount of money on things I didn’t need. As I got older, I quickly realized that materials, although they bring us temporary happiness, only add weight to our lives. You will not be defined by the things you own!

3) Time for what really matters

This is perhaps the biggest point where I felt like minimalism changed my life because I didn’t have to spend so much time cleaning because I didn’t have much anyway. I think as long as you have the basics, you’re okay, you’re not going to die if you don’t have the new gadget or the new appliance or the new piece of technology. As long as you have the time to spend with the people that you love, nothing else should matter because life is too short for you to waste it on unnecessary possessions. There is nothing better than purging because accumulating is a heavy load to carry. Seriously! I do hold on to things that are meaningful to me, but less so that before, because I focus on making the memories in other ways. There is nothing wrong with enjoying your money and enjoying the things you buy, it is only important to know that you do not need materials to make you happy. What’s funny is that most of us on this planet, we loathe what we do and yet we still work hard to be able to afford all those unnecessary things, therefore, we spend our lives unhappy and ungrateful and a lot of us die that way. Only 5% of us 7.5 billion get to live our dreams, which is quite sad come to think of it.

4) Saves money

Spending less money is an obvious reason as to why minimalism is beneficial. You don’t end up in debt and I feel like this is our biggest problem. Most of us buy our things with our credit cards and we then never have enough money to pay that up and we end up drowning in endless debts and we spend all our lives working just to be able to pay those basics we buy (not necessary things we need). Instead, focus on spending your money on experiences, travels and adventures; that’s how you really get to enjoy your money and fruits of your labour. This minimalistic lifestyle might not be for everyone because we sadly associate success to owning materials rather than little accomplishments; having the big house with the picket fence, the perfect car and expensive furniture and latest trends….all those things ultimately won’t bring you happiness—the bigger the better I guess.

Less is more!!! That’s the motto we should all live by! There’s more to life than shopping and owning it all.

Jimmi Hendrix meets Freddie Mercury; the pirate edit!

This outfit has got me feeling all kinds of pirate! It’s very Jimi Hendrix meets Freddie Mercury meets Jack Sparrow all in one. I feel so vivacious and alive and honestly I felt like I can conquer the world even though the whole outfit was pretty simply. Again, these featured pants are from a recent haul from Zara and they felt super comfortable when I first tried them on. The pants were so inspiring and what drew me to them was definitely the fact that they were striped and not just any stripes….the pants are shiny with lurex thread all over. The stripes are happy and colourful in a very subtle way, so it is easy to mix and match them with any top; the choices are vast, ahoy! I felt very rock and roll in this particular outfit and it sincerely lift my mood up, since I have been feeling quite bloated recently..haha! Beach whale on the loose! Freddie Mercury will always be my forever crush! He was always so handsome and so on point with all his outfits and I won’t like that I may use him as an inspiration from time to time; he was so bold and so creative with his stage looks and that’s what made his performances even more catchy. He truly was a style icon, a legend, a Queen and a force to be reckoned with but mostly importantly he unapologetically expressed himself through fashion and that is everything! Jimi Hendrix was bold in his own righteous way; he was vibrant, colourful and flamboyant and always mixed colors and patterns so effortlessly. He was a true trendsetter and I feel like I would have been great friends with him! Haha! I mean colors and patterns are my things too!

So clearly I was inspired today to be a rock & roll legend too, as if! But here’s my edit on the famous striped pant:

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I decided to add some vintage items to the look just to feel like I belong in their era. It’s so interesting how one can connect with older generations just by looking at photos and documentaries. I felt like an old soul!

WHAT I WORE

JACKET: Monsoon ♠ SHIRT: Como Black ♠ PANTS: Zara ♠ SHOES: Kenneth Cole Reaction ♠ BAG: Vintage (available on sale on my ETSY shop) ♠ SUNNIES: Brigitte Bardot (Vintage) ♠ NECKLACE: Vintage

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The little Jack Sparrow in me was happy today because I let the rock & roll pirate out. Fashion is so amazing because you can easily transform yourself with clothes into anything you want; you just have to be daring to try new things!


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I tried following the 10 step Korean skincare routine for a month and here’s what happened…

So as we all may know, Koreans take their skincare routine very seriously; so damn seriously that they have a whole 10 steps to follow. I already read about the benefits of their routines and their habits and the products they use. Some are pretty pricey and some are average and their skincare varies from creams to serums to ampoules to masks. After a month of trying this out, I gotta say it’s exhausting, but after some extensive research, I do realize that it is not required to do the full 10 steps on a daily, but rather to choose what to use according to the particular needs of your skin. Here are the deets…

Step One: Oil Cleanser

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Purpose of this step: The oil cleanser is applied to dry skin; an oil cleanser to help remove makeup and any other oil-based product debris like sunscreen and pollution particles.

What I used: I recently got on the Clinique Take the Day Off Cleansing Balm bandwagon thanks to many obsessive review readings. There is no particular special texture or smell for this product, but it was soft and pleasant to use. It takes a little to get used to if you do not like the feel of oil on the skin; it was definitely weird for me to have an oily film on my skin but knowing that I could wash it right after didn’t make it too bad to bear. Every night, for a whole month, I first cleansed my face with this oil whether I had makeup or not.

Step Two: Foam Cleanser

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Purpose of this step: According to Koreans, the secret to perfect skin is to make sure it is fully clean before applying any other product…therefore, double cleansing is necessary because there, for sure, will be leftover gunk on your skin after one cleanse.

What I used: I never paid any consideration to the cleanser I used as long as it never made my skin dry. So I grabbed whatever was on the shelf at the drugstore and to be honest, other than the Cosrx Cleanser which I still love, I didn’t give it too much thought, so I figured there’s no harm for me to try a foam cleanser. I decided to try the Shiseido Extra Cream Cleansing Foam and I actually loved the double-cleanse step. This rich cream foams instantly and helps clean the skin in the smoothest way leaving you with fresh and supple skin filled with health and just oomph. It really felt like my skin was completely cleared of any bad particles, leaving a clean slate to work with for the rest of the regimen. This is probably the two steps I will stick with forever because clean skin feels truly amazing.

Step Three: Exfoliator

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Purpose of this step: It’s pretty obvious why we use exfoliators. I remember being quite obsessed with this step when I was younger, because it was the only way my skin felt super clean and fresh…and I may have been abusive with it to the point where I exfoliate almost daily which put a strain onto my sensitive skin. Too much of it can actually damage the skin rather than saving it. Granted, exfoliation not only cleans out clogged pores, but it also sloughs off dead skin cells as it removes the dull layer of cells to help reveal brighter skin.

What I used: I wanted something less abrasive because I already have quite dry skin now with the pregnancy. So I decided to stick to just using a glycolic acid exfoliator instead rather than bead filled cream. Although, when I do feel like my skin needs it, I do use a cream exfoliator once every two weeks in the shower for an extra boost. With the Pixi Glow Tonic, I could easily exfoliate away with a little cotton pad and be done in like  two seconds. Although I ended up not sticking to this step, it was still beneficial as glycolic acid is the Holy Grail for exfoliation because it helps effectively remove the outermost layer of dead cells from the complexion, revealing brighter, fresher skin. Glycolic Acid can also be used to treat scarring, skin discoloration and signs of aging.

Step Four: Toner

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Purpose of this step: According to Korean skincare experts, after cleansing so many times the skin becomes fragile, so it is really important to take the time to hydrate it and this is why toner is necessary because it acts as a way to prep the skin, so it’ll absorb the following treatments better.

What I used: I stuck with just using the rose water I was using from the beginning of my pregnancy. You can pretty much find rose water in your local organic food store and not spend a gazillion dollars. Didn’t want to go all out and purchase something just to try it…I was content with the results of the rose water. I still used this step, on and off, depending on how I feel and depending on the time I have to spend to prep my skin. At the beginning, I used a cotton pad but then I felt like I was wasting so much product and wasn’t getting all the benefits…therefore, I decided to just pour the liquid into my palms and patting onto my skin and this felt much more beneficial. This step really did help my skin feel plumper and more hydrated.

Step Five: Essence

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Purpose of this step: The essence is the heart of Korean skin care and it considered the most important part of their entire routine. The essence is a treatment that is similar to serums, boosters, or ampoules; but it’s more watery in consistency then the rest of those products, so it comes out like a toner.

What I used: Since I have used Cosrx before as a brand and felt like it wouldn’t cause me to break out massively or have an allergic reaction, I decided to try on of their essences. I went with the Advanced Snail Power Essence but honestly, although I finished up the bottle, I didn’t feel like it made a world of a difference, I mean I don’t feel like I need to continue with this step. It did feel luxurious and diva-like to splash the essence on my face but it was just meh for me.

Step Six: Serum, Boosters, or Ampoule Treatments

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Purpose of this step: This basically where you target your major needs and use these specific products to treat all the concerns you may have with your skin. This step is to work on issues that you may have such as brown spots, pigmentation, acne and more.

What I used: Since at the moment, I am having very good skin, I haven’t changed what I use. I have been using this particular serum for ages and will continue to do so because I really do actually see a difference in my skin whenever I stop using it. This Mario Badescu Vitamin C Serum is a must for me because it helps me maintain a healthy, glowing, clean skin all year round. It helps brighten my complexion and even out my skin tone. This serum step is a regular in my skincare routine anyway so I didn’t feel like I had to go all out. My skin really does feel healthy with this serum and I do recommend it to anyone looking to remove any spots and pigmentation.

Step Seven: Mask

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Purpose of this step: The purpose of your mask depends on what your skin needs. You can choose to extra hydrate, to deep-clean or whatever depending on how your skin is on this particular day. This is not an every-night step, you really only need to do it twice a week.

What I used: Masking has been a ritual for me for ages! I cannot not use a mask, you know what I mean? It’s like the only way I feel like I unwind and relax. I use masks usually to relax but whenever I feel like I need to clear up my clogged pores or deep clean my skin, I reach for the heavy duty masks. There are a couple of masks that I use and it would be too long to go through them in this post…but I can definitely do another updates posts with my favourite masks of all time. I usually just reach for the Sephora Brand Sheet Masks depending on how I feel and they work great. There is no need to spend big money on masks as long as they truly work and deliver what they promise.

Step Eight: Eye Cream

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Purpose of this step: Depending on what you are looking for, this step could focus on everything from fine lines to dark circles. Basically, if you have any under eye concerns, “there’s” a cream for it.

What I used: I was never into eye creams to start with; I tried a gazillion cream from a gazillion different brand but never truly saw the benefit of any. According to my dermatologist, eye creams aren’t necessary anyway because they’re just like your regular moisturizer with a little less concentration in the ingredeints….so using your regular moisturizer around your eyes gently is way better than splurging your money of an eye cream that won’t do much anyway. I, for kicks, used to Shiseido Benefiance Wrinkle Night Cream and yup, as I predicted, nothing really changed. I mean it’s nice and bougie to use it, but I won’t keep spending 78$ for something that doesn’t work all that much.

Step Nine: Face Cream

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Purpose of this step: This step is simply to lock in skin’s moisture and it is the key to supple, younger-looking skin.

What I used: Even if you don’t end up following the 10 step skincare routine, moisturizer should be worn day and night. My current favourite is the Dr. Jart Ceramidin Cream and I absolutely love it because it quenches my dehydrated skin so deeply. It freaking feels amazing on and I don’t feel greasy or icky after putting it on. Sucks that it’s always sold out at Sephora. It honestly does make a difference in the way my skin feels and since I have been using it, I haven’t felt a bit dry or irritated. I cannot stress how smooth my skin feels at the moment, like better than baby-butt smooth! I promise!

Step Ten: SPF

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Purpose of this step: Koreans (Asians in general) are really really obsessed with SPF. It seems self-explanatory, but sun protection is crucial on a daily basis to maintain healthy skin. Applying SPF regularly, even when it’s cloudy, that’s the biggest differentiator in the Korean regimen.

What I used: I usually apply my SPF after my moisturizer every morning. I love physical sunscreen because they contain mineral ingredients like Zinc Oxide and so they protect from both UVA and UVB rays. The one I am currently using is the Shiseido Oil-Free SPF. I mean we all know why SPF is important and so it is really important to make it a big habit to use this on a daily even when it rains and really when the sun’s too hot and out there.

After spending a whole month working up on this routine, I am not going to lie that it did feel like a chore on some days and it was sometimes annoying for me to go through everything daily. Whenever I felt like I needed to unwind, I love it! I loved doing the whole circus, but being real here, 10 steps as a new mum will be quite hard for me to maintain and so I will probably end up keeping 5 to 7 of these steps for the future. Quite frankly, if you do have the time for the 10 steps skincare routine, then go for it, because the benefits are really there and I do see results, but life everything else in life, it’s work and you need to be dedicated.