Review: Ralph Lauren Big Pony Collection for Women

In a game of 30 seconds, if you say Polo shirt; I'd say Ralph Lauren. That's the association I make.  I imagine preppy, muscular boys in toit polo shirts gazing into the distance, and google agrees with me: 

This is a slim fit custom Polo shirt, just to you know

Lately, I've been thinking about the brand a little differently - mainly because I've been dousing myself in a cloud of Big Pony to suit my mood. That seems to be the message behind the concept: four fragrances with different 'personalities' to suit your mood. Ideally, you would have all of them lined up on your dresser, and you'd pick the one that works for you that day. It seems to be the way most fragrance houses are leaning - no more single signature scent, but rather picking a suitable scent for the mood/occasion.

Ralph Lauren Big Pony Fragrance Collection for Women

No 1 is Sporty, with Grapefruit and Blue Lotus
No 2 is Sensual, with Cranberry and Tonka Mousse
No 3 is Free Spirited, with Pear and Mimosa
No 4 is Sophisticated, with Cherry and Amber

The models for the Big Pony for Women Fragrance Campaign:
Sporty, Sensual, Free Spirited, Sophisticated (image source)

I don't dislike any of the fragrances, they're all 'safe' smells which makes them great gifts in my opinion - nothing is over the top and they're well balanced. My favourites are numbers 3 and 4, but then I've always been the slightly odd one, and I veer towards the older side of their target market (older = sophisticated in perfumery, as in many other things). But I really do enjoy all four of them. The only thing I don't like is the large, brightly coloured numbers on the bottles - they look cool on the box, but not so much on the bottle. In my opinion, of course.

Available from mid August, prices range from R470 for 30ml to R750 for 100ml EDT.

C xx

Review: YSL Blush Radiance (Radiant Blush)

My ever increasing obsession with blushers, bronzers and highlighters lead me to keep this beauty in its velvet sleeve for weeks and weeks. Mostly because I took a peek, and knew straight away that the shade would not be suitable for my pasty cheeks. Denial took up most of my grieving time...

YSL Blush Radiance (Radiant Blush) 05

This beautiful compact is made up of four squares, of which two are matte and two are very slightly shimmery. You swish them together and apply to the cheeks to create a flush of colour. But seriously, ignore the usual makeup copy and read what I'm writing - it mimicks actual blushing/flushing. Like you just ran up a flight of stairs, or were caught snogging on the couch*.

YSL Blush Radiance 05 - I applied a darker foundation
on my arm, and this is a light sweep of blusher 

This particular shade is great for darker skinned girls who have a problem with blusher not 'showing' on their skin. It's also not a funny teracotta or brown colour - it's a deep pink/red brick combo. As my college makeup tutor said (and try as I may, I have never been able to get it out of my head): "Nobody blushes Peach".

YSL Blush Radiance 1-6. I'm either 4 or 6.
And I'm v intrigued by 3.

*Only applicable if you're 17 or younger

C xx

#NOTD: Tip Top Cha Cha Cha

I've been enjoying this mint green because it packs a little more punch than the standard milky pastel. It also looks great with grey, which is one of my go-to colours.

Tip Top Cha Cha Cha

See how well Tip Top Cha Cha Cha
goes with my fave grey scarf?

It even matches my hair dryer

Available from Foschini and Clicks at R40.

C xx

Perth International Airport Duty Free Shopping Wishlist

I'm v excited to see The Mother at the end of November, and she's asked me for a list of goodies I would like her to bring from Down Under. I'm doing her one better - I'm sending pictures, names and prices of all kinds of great stuff mom can pick up at the duty free shop on her way over here. I share with you, my wishlist in no particular order:

Kiehl's Superbly Smoothing Argan Conditioner, $13

OPI Best of the Best, $40. Scrap no particular
order, this is right at the top of the list.

OPI Drip Dry nail polish drying drops, $20

Lancome Sweet Butterfly Palette, $50
Apparently this is exclusive to Duty Free shops.

Gold-infused Smirnoff Vodka, $40. I'll drink it with Sprite Zero so that
the bling stays visible.

Nikon Coolpix AW100, cough $340 cough. Wondering why it's
so fugly? It's water- and shockproof. I'm mostly interested in
the 1cm macro shooting function, so I'll also settle for the
 Coolpix S100 or S8200. 

3 x 400g Milk Toblerone, $20.
Also: Oink Oink.

Swatch Red Rebel, $86

But maybe, before she makes her way to the airport, she can shop for a few other things online:

Kiehl's Overnight Biological Peel, $68 from Myer

Queen Real Living Kato Bedset for my spare room,
$82 from Target.

And then there are a couple of things I'd like from the supermarket...

I'm not joking - in Australia you can buy Joico hair products in Woolworths
(which is not like our Woolworths, it's a supermarket like our Checkers/Pick n Pay).
This variant, K-Pak Colour Therapy, is new to me and I look forward to trying it.
Around $25 per bottle.

Hmmm... Caramel TimTams... As much as I like them, I refuse to pay
R45 for a packet of biscuits. They're regular-priced $2-$3 biscuits in Oz.
(image source)

I think that'll be all. Except for the most amazing Mercer + Reid linen spray that I now can't find online, which is making me nervous because I would like at least three bottles of the Rose Anatolia & Bergamot goodness. I 'cheat' by spritzing it on curtains so that the scent breezes through the entire house. I had four bottles in October, now I'm on my last one...

Thanks Mom! I'll fill the gaps in your suitcase with all the African gifts and curios you can carry. And WINE. Have I mentioned how much wine I'll have for you on arrival?

C xx

Sorbet Beauty Chain launches Drybar Express Hair Salon

Aah, don't you love it when a third world country keeps up with the times?

The Sorbet beauty & nail bar chain is opening their first Sorbet Drybar - an express hair salon where you can have your hair washed and styled. They'll be offering blowdrys at a flat rate of R140 - no matter what the length or texture of your hair is - and their stylists will use L'Oreal Professional, Mizani and Redken products.

They won't be offering cut- or colour services (focus ladies, it's an express salon), but you can add extras like a scalp massage (R50) or hair treatment (R185). They'll also be offering a complete range of nail services: think manis, pedis, gelish, transfers, gel nails, the works. You'll also score free wifi and a glass of bubbly out of the deal.

But my absolute favourite part is the menu. Can't all hair salons have menu's like this? All the ones I go to, have simply asked: ghd, blowdry, or wavy? I then stutter, try to explain, and end up saying 'straight please' and look EXACTLY THE SAME EVERY.SINGLE.TIME. Well done Sorbet, at least I can point to a picture now.

Vanilla: Standard Blow with a little volume

Espresso: Smooth and sleek

Amaretto: The beach look

Rocky Road: Plenty of curls

The first Sorbet Drybar is opening early in August in the Dunkeld West Shopping Centre in Joburg (another perk of moving to Gauteng: tick).

C xx

Gavin Rajah Designs Fancy Pants Clutch Bag For Clinique

A couple of days ago we got to shmingle at Edgars in the V&A Waterfront to celebrate the pretty clutch bag Gavin Rajah designed for Clinique. I'll let you know straight away that it's a limited-time-only offer that's valid until 5 August if they last that long, so if you like this little baggie and you need R900 worth of cosmetics, I suggest you hurry off to a Clinique counter now.

Turqouise, silver and white clutch bag, Gavin Rajah for Clinique.
Totally waiting 20 years and selling the one he signed for me...
Hello early retirement :)

This is the third year that Clinique is offering a designer bag as a gift with purchase, and not just a pvc bag or something... Last year David Tlale designed a bag, and the year before that there was a Stoned Cherrie creation. Natasha Bennet, Clinique SA Brand Manager, said they like the idea of making a designer item obtainable to the average shopper - many loyal Clinique users will now have their third designer bag this year.

The man of the moment, Gavin Rajah, telling
us about his collaboration with Clinique.
He was quickly dubbed 'Style Santa' in his
big white chair, and a few girls wanted to
sit on his lap so that all their designer wishes
could come true...

If you would like a Gavin Rajah Bag of your own, you can get one mahala at selected Edgars and Red Square stores when you spend R900 or more on Clinique goods. If that purchase includes two skincare products, you'll also get the Clinique bonus gift set with 8 mini products (4 skincare and 4 makeup).

C xx

PS - I promise this is the last of kak quality phone pics, I finally found my camera batteries...