SECRETS AND STILETTOS | DRESS COLLECTION

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It’s finally here! After much anticipation, my range is on sale. Dress detailing is shown below, and stock is very limited for exclusivity. Dresses will be sold by appointment only.

Email rowenasaloojee@gmail.com or call/message on 081 715 9193.

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OUTFIT POST | NAUTICAL

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As the month of Ramadhaan is upon us, I always try to make a conscious effort to don the Hijab. Not exactly perfectly, but it is an attempt (note: longer cardi!). It’s a lot easier in winter, because sleeves are automatically long (and coats! glorious coats). My outfit is unfortunately nothing that I purchased recently. I simply cannot see sense in paying sky high prices for below average fashion that is currently offered in South Africa. Anyone else share these sentiments?

 

Thanks Rohab for the photography!

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WHAT’S IN THE BAG

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The handbag of a women is a pretty standard item, like shoes and underwear. However, the contents almost always vary; according to profession, stage in their lives (biscuit-crumbs-at-the-bottom-of-your-bag mums, we feel you), and your overall personality. I love reading posts like these; it absolutely fascinates me seeing a glimpse of what a person may be like from the things they use on a daily basis.

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1. A gorgeous bag from the #givemeAldoSA launch. A black standard bag goes with everything, and this one is great because it’s a pretty decent size, and the gold embellishments add character.

2. A smaller bag. This is a flat clutch from Forever New, and slips perfectly into almost any bag. I love putting important items into something smaller. It makes it easier to just transfer that when changing bags, and if your headed out for an errand or caught with needing to go out in the evening, you have it on hand.

3. A bright wallet always makes me happy. It’s easier to find when in a rush, and I particularly like this one because it’s flat and compact.

4. A diary. Whilst most things get stored on my phone, it’s sometimes easier to have a pen and paper to stay organized, or brain storm. This particular one was categorized for me, and holds sentimental value with a small inspirational message to remind me not to fall apart (and not to ever stop blogging!).

5. A fine liner pen. I prefer these over ball points because of it’s universal use and lasting power. Writes on clothes, cardboard, CD’s, etc. And it’s way more fun to doodle with.

6. Hand sanitizer spray. A small little spray bottle from Oh So Heavenly is a must have in your bag. It isn’t as sticky as the normal gel sanitizer, and dispenses the perfect amount.

7. Hand cream. Especially for wintery months, it’s never a bad idea to have a small miniature cream on hand (see what I did there?) I absolutely love the Victoria’s Secret creams (or anything Victoria’s Secret, really!)

8. Lip Balm. My go-to lip balms are now baby lips. The two I have both smell amazing, and, depending on whether I want a red tint or a nude lip, they give off a subtle colour, appreciated in winter.

9.  Powder foundation. I particularly like MAC Studio Fix, because of it’s staying power and coverage. At the end of a long day, no one wants to reapply liquid foundation, so a dusting of this readds a bit of colour to skin, without looking caked.

10. Red lipstick. You have no idea how useful I have found this to be; whether it’s to slyly add a dot to my cheeks for some colour, or a full on red lip for a pick-me-up. I really love MAC Russian Red, or MAC Viva Glam. They’re both matte lipsticks, so last all day (even after you’ve eaten a burger, I’ve tried!)

11. Pepper Spray. I live in Johannesburg, and as a woman, safety can sometimes become an issue. Although I have yet to use it, I like knowing that I have some sort of mild protection to keep my mind at peace.

12. Keys. An obvious one for your bag, but I keep these in the outer zip of the small bag. It makes it so much easier to locate, and you’ll almost never forget them with your mini traveling purse.

13. Perfume. I am obsessed with this Roberto Cavalli perfume (Acqua), it has such a lingering scent, and works well for both day and night.

14. A USB memory stick. I got this one from Celio, and love it for it’s fun shape, bright colour and it’s size, because I have a knack of losing these things. Whilst it’s main use it for campus (and series!), I’ve found it particularly useful in random occasions as well.

15. A hairband. I hate having hairbands on my wrist because it gives me something to fidget with, and inevitably lose. This and a bobby pin or two definitely come in handy.

16. Cellphone. I considered leaving this out, because it’s virtually always in my hand or in my pocket because I hate having that mini heart attack hunting for it in my bag. (And with the amount of bag snatching these days, I prefer it that way!)

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There you have it. What fun/essential items do you have in your bag?

ICE CREAM PARTY | ROHABS 21ST

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Often when it comes to creative students such as those in fashion, their creativity seeps over to other areas of expertise as well. So when Rohab decided that she is going to have a party for her 21st this year, I knew it had to be something out of the box and spectacular.

 

After initial bread-and-butter ideas that have been commercialized, I came up with the concept of an Ice Cream Party. The theme didn’t really fall into place until I designed the invitation. It looked pretty bland against a pink and white striped background (yet synonymous with vintage ice cream parlors), until it was replaced with a chalkboard background, which was the base of the theme thereafter. (PS, I love how the smudged out address and contact details look like it was wiped off the chalkboard!)

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Welcome drinks and while-you-wait popcorn was served initially, coinciding with the vintage theme that ran throughout the decor

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The tea station was kept simple: ribboned up cups, and wooden cutlery that gave the feeling of popsicles on a hot day. Instead of a traditional box, we decided to peg the different tea flavours together, opting for a more rustic feel.

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cones and toppings for the ice cream bar

 

The ice cream bar was kept simple, with a few exciting key elements.

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Instead of bowls, we decided on a free standing “tree” that held buckets to be used a fun alternative to cups

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And for the savouries, all of them were displayed on a huge mirrored frame. Ceramic spoons for the chutneys and sauces added a unique element. We kept it simple with delectable Jalepeno Samoosas, moons and pies, catered by Barbie (Contact details below). These were by far some of the nicest savories I have ever had, and cheaper than other suppliers.

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The dessert table would not have been as adorable as it was if it wasn’t for Sadika (contact details below). I simply gave her the theme, budget, and she delivered in the most efficient, gorgeous way possible. I was obsessed with the cone cupcakes (that doubled up as edible props!)

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As a whole, it turned out to be an absolutely incredible affair. There’s nothing as exciting as helping a best friend plan a 21st, and this was definitely one for the books! Happy Birthday Rohab!

 

Supplier Contact details:

Savouries: Barbie: 082 646 8687

Cakes: Sadika: 083 645 3306

 



ALL THAT GLITTERS IS GOLD | BREEZE FASHION SHOW

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THE OFFICIAL INVITE FOR THE BREEZE FASHION SHOW, IN COLLABORATION WITH SECRETS AND STILETTOS.

The theme for this years Breeze Fashion Show could not ooze any more glamour. The all that Glitters is Gold theme coincides with the delicate hand beaded work, synonymous to the Breeze Fashion brand.

Expect to be blown away with intricate detailing on Abayas for the upcoming Eid festivities, or wowed by the exquisite Eastern wear and Haute Couture Gowns (because we ALL know wedding season is around the corner!)

To top it off, Secrets and Stilettos will be launching a brand new modest wear range, imported from Turkey. The aim is to inspire women who want to dress more conservatively this month, without sacrificing looking fashionable.

Alongside this, you can look forward to a live styling session on Hijab friendly looks, straight from the range.

Book your ticket now! Contact rowenasaloojee@gmail.com

A LETTER TO MY BEST FRIEND(S)

“Maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates, and guys are just people to have fun with” -Sex and the City.

We all have that moment, when we look across the table at a person in all their awkwardness and think,”man, I love you”.

No, I’m not talking about the person you’ve been crushing on for MONTHS and then things finally fell into place, but the person who had to painstakingly listen to you decrypt his text message (he said Hey, but with TWO y’s!! Do you think he likes me?!) I’m talking about your best friend.

It’s those 2AM sob sessions, where your words are barely audible, but no one else but she would understand.

Those “what HAPPENED to you?? You look like crap!” moments of honesty, that only a best friend could say without offending you…

… And that “dayum gurl!” Ghetto moments she has when she thinks you look smoking. Because no one will be more honest than her to tell you that the navy dress looks WAY hotter than the red dress, and actually mean it.

It’s those screaming-at-the-top-of-your-lungs singing sessions you have in traffic (so call me maybe?!), and those weird dance moves you make up but would never do in public.

Those moments of “okay they told me not to tell a soul BUT…”

And those horrendous blackmail pictures she has on her phone and randomly threatens to Instagram.

AND that girl she knows you don’t like, but threatens to become best friends with if you’re not nice to her.

It’s the ones who understand that any drive longer than 20 minutes is considered a road trip and requires massive amounts of food…

… And speaking of food, it’s those who know not to ask you for any, but go straight to the fridge and help themselves.

It’s the girl who completely understands your celebrity crush on Justin Bieber, even though you’re in your 20s…

… But knows that if you had to choose, Freddy Prince Junior would still come first.

It’s that best friend that probably doesn’t know your favourite colour, but knows where you buy your favourite jeans from and that counts for WAY more.

It’s those who you no longer can refer to as a best friend, they’ve become sisters. So thank you, best friend. Thank you, for just being you.

Xx

FLAWLESS FOUNDATION TIPS

Slide1Foundation is one of those things that really makes or breaks your overall finish of your makeup. For every day use, BB cream may be your go-to item; however on special occasions it’s always great to have a flawless finish; and the tips and tricks to get it.

Although it may seem excessive to use this much product; you’ll thank me when your makeup stays put all day/night long, and your face looks glowing and still natural. PS: Check out for step 4, it’s probably a tip you haven’t come across before!

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STEP 1

Before applying any makeup. make sure that you have exfoliated your skin. This makes such a difference to the overall appearance of your foundation! I prefer to make up a mixture of Bicarbonate of Soda (baking soda) and a little bit of water. Apply to skin, let sit for two minutes then rinse off.

STEP 2

Moisturize! Some women are under the impression that if you skip moisturizing, your makeup will last longer. It’s actually the opposite; if you leave your moisturizer to settle in before putting on any other product, your makeup will not slide. I recommend using a BB cream as a moisturizer for extra coverage. Garnier is my go to BB cream.

STEP 3

Using a primer really makes a difference in how well your makeup looks, and how long it lasts. Primers can erase fine lines and pores, which make it ideal for a flawless finish. I have tried a few primers, but I truly feel like the one from Inglot is the best.

STEP 4 

This may seem a little odd, but I heard about this tip from makeup guru Wayne Goss. Apply a generous dusting of translucent powder BEFORE your liquid foundation. I know that every beauty site/artist will tell you that you cannot put liquid or cream over powder, but this tip really works! I have very visible pores, and when I do this trick they practically vanish. Side tip: for everyday wear, you can put translucent powder on your face after primer and before wearing a BB cream for a natural with minimal coverage look. I love the translucent powder from Essence makeup; it’s affordable and lasts for ages!

STEP 5

Apply your liquid or cream foundation. I use a damp beauty blender sponge for this step to really get a flawless finish. If at this point you still feel as though you need extra coverage under the eyes, you can add concealer. I use MAC Studio Fluid Foundation for maximum coverage.

STEP 6

Apply a powder in your skin tone. You’re welcome to skip this step if you have dry skin, but I really feel like it sets the makeup. If you want just a light dusting, use a brush. I prefer to use a powder puff/sponge on my cheek areas. it gives more coverage and really makes makeup stay put. I use MAC Studio Fix powder, because I use just a tiny bit. Another good option for a lighter finish is the MAC mineralize skin finish powders.

STEP 7

Finish off with a spritz of fix spray. Whilst I highly recommend the MAC Fix +, it can sometimes be slightly pricey. I purchase pure rose water from a spice or health store instead, and decant it into a spray bottle.

All done! What are your tips for a flawless face?

 

MOTHERS DAY | GIVEAWAY

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Mothers Day falls on May 11th this year, and Secrets and Stilettos was generously given two hampers by Danielle Franco from Bush Telegraph to give away; Not only do you get to spoil your wonderful mom with beauty items from Schwarzkopf, Batiste and Nair, but you get a hamper for yourself as well!

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  1. Schwarzkopf Colour Mask in Dark Brown
  2. Schwarzkopf Colour Mask in Chestnut Brown
  3. Schwarzkopf Gliss Hair Repair Leave in Spray
  4. Schwarzkopf Gliss Hair Repair Shampoo
  5. Schwarzkopf Gliss Hair Repair Conditioner
  6. Batiste Dry Shampoo XXL volume
  7. Batiste Dry Shampoo Fruity and Cherry
  8. Batiste Dry Shampoo Dark and Deep Brown
  9. Batiste Dry Shampoo
  10. Nair Brazilian Spa Clay

The instructions to enter are simple; listed below

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  • This competition is limited to entrants from South Africa.
  • The competition closes on Wednesday 7 May at Midnight; the winner will be notified on Thursday 8 May. Should the winner be unresponsive by the end of May 8th, a new winner will be chosen.
  • Winners are chosen at random and are final

Good Luck!

CLOSED: Congratulations to Chanel Tay Fakir!

 

TRES SISTERLY | OUTFIT POST

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My sister Nazmira and I were graciously invited to the Mr Price VIP Event this month, where we were spoiled with everything from shopping vouchers to ‘smores bars. One of the highlights of the event was the amazing selfie cam (you can check out some of the pictures on my Instagram account: @rowenasaloojee). Nazmira and I both purchased these adorable T-shirts (R89.99) with our gift vouchers, so what better way than to show em off in a sisterly way?

To see more pictures of Nazmira’s outfit, head on over to Nazmira.com

Images take at The Saxon Hotel.

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TWEEN BEAUTY KIT

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I remember this phase of my life; I just got my hands on my ever so generous mom’s new Estee Lauder gift set, complete with a variety of eye shadows, blushes, lipstick and, of course, a brand new eyeliner pencil (I don’t know what it is about Tweens, but the first thing they usually go for is pencil liner). I visited my elder sister Nazmira in London, and after not seeing her for 6 months I forgot what it was like to have her around. So as I woke up one morning, reached out for my makeup I was greeted with, “What are you putting on your eyes? You can’t use that! And tie up your hair. ” Much to my dismay, I had to listen.

Tweens these days, however, would probably throw a tantrum complete with, “You’re not the boss of me!”, some door banging and panda eyes as rebellion (see Taylor Momsen, aka Jenny from Gossip Girl).

The best you can do is embrace this phase, and give a little help to younger sisters, cousins or any little girl that may look up to you. Guidance is key; plus you’ll definitely be considered the “cool” aunt. (Although, to me this starts at around the age of 12)

 

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1. BB Cream. I wish I had this stuff in my teenage years. Acceptable to wear as a moisturizer, whilst still giving light coverage to problem skin is just about the best invention the beauty world has seen! I would opt for a BB cream like The Body Shop’s Vitamin E version, as it simultaneously works as a treatment. Available from Clicks or The Body Shop stores.

2. Gel liner. I have a niece who’s 14, and on occasion she is allowed to wear a tad bit of makeup. I sat with her with a liner brush, some gel liner and taught her precisely how to apply it without it looking too obvious. Gel liner is a much smarter option as opposed to pencil, as it smudges a lot less and can be thinned down to a subtle line. I really love MAC fluidline, but if you’re looking for a cheaper version, check Essence makeup from Clicks stores.

3. Blush. If there’s one thing that can really bring life into skin, it’s blush. A pale pink shade will keep from looking clown like, and, lets face it, nothing quite makes you feel like a girl like a big fluffy brush to the apples of your cheeks! I would go for a relatively cheap blush such as Essence silky touch blush.

4. Still too young for lipstick, but (hopefully) passed that phase of too thick, too shiny lipgloss. My favourite are the Maybelline Baby Lips lip balms. They really do make your lips feel amazing, with a slight colour; perfect!

Make a point of teaching your younger person how to use everything properly; Instead of doing their makeup, sit with them in front of a mirror and show them how to perfect each step. They’ll really appreciate it in the long run!

Optional extras:

  • Makeup wipes. I love using baby wipes to wipe off my face after a long day, and they work wonders on taking off gel liner!
  • Brushes to match; you don’t need a lot of these, but giving a good base to build up on is a good idea
  • A mini makeup bag/case. There’s nothing quite as special as having a little bag *just* for their stuff.

Do you have any extra advice? Any tween experiences with makeup you remember? Share below!