Kick-Butt Buy Of The Week: Desi Wedding Planner by The Wedding Planit

I found this desi wedding planner by The Wedding Planit very randomly a few days ago and flipped because it's SO FABOOLUSS. Other than the fact that it looks like the most fun thing to fill out, it actually feels pretty practical too. It's got different tabs for things like clothes, budgeting, inspiration, jotting down memories and basically to sort all your wedding planning out. It feels like such an incredible gift for someone whose getting married. You've GOT to get your hand on this.

You can buy the wedding planner for PKR 2000 here on Artsy or here on Delivery Walay.

They also have a new wedding planner, called The Wedding Planner 2.0 available for purchase here on their website for PKE 2500. My research skills have told me that it's on a 20% discount until October 5th, so you might want to pay urgent attention to that.

Here are a few links to help you understand this planner better: Tiny peek inside the planner from Delivery Walay and some quick shots on Artsy. You can also see the second wedding planner they have in this super cute video here

The Wedding Planit guys have really creative wedding stuff on their website. Check it all out here. You can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

I'll come back and update here if they ship internationally.


My Favorite Drugstore Shampoos

I've been meaning to do this post for so long. I mean, after years of using shampoos that were just 'okay, not bad', I've finally found some that I can trust and be able to focus on other aspects of my life (spouse/relationships/career/etc).

After having used most of these shampoos over the course of the last one year and having tried and tested them in various scenarios - with hair that's air-dried, blowdried, with waves, super straight - I'm convinced I don't need to actively look for more. These are all drugstore brands so they're super affordable and they've really helped fix my hair from the mess that it used to be a few years ago.

Before I begin, while these shampoos HAVE helped my hair, there is no shampoo (or product) that will work in isolation. You need multiple factors working together - clean water (that means a shower filter for places with exceptionally hard water), decent enough eating habits, controlled use of heat styling tools, a regular haircut/trim, to name a few. My hair had gone from bad to worse when I moved to Dubai and after working on it with some simple methods I can tell you, my hair has almost fully repaired itself. You can read more about my hair fix here.

All of that being said, a good shampoo does alter the appearance of your hair. It can add volume, bounce, shine, and keep it clean for longer. And the following are the five on my happy shampoo list.

But first, my hair type: My hair is naturally straight (but not poker straight) most of the times but can have a slight wave depending on what shampoo I use, how I airdry it, whether I brush it after washing or not, etc. Some shampoos/conditioners can make my hair very straight so on a good hair they can look like someone blowdried them amateur style. Some shampoos/conditioners can make my hair wavy. Hope that helps with perspective.

Now these exact variants in the list below may not work for you, depending on what hair type you have. What you can do is test out the variant for your hair from these shampoo ranges that work for me and see if they give you good results. For example, if the pink Sunsilk works for me, but your hair type is different, then you can try the purple one (or any other) to see if your hair agrees with that one.

Let's discuss.


1. Sunsilk Shine & Strength (Pink) Shampoo & Conditioner AND Sunsilk Nourishing Soft & Smooth (Yellow) Shampoo & Conditioner: I actually stopped using Sunsilk a long time ago and only tried them out when I did a project with Sunsilk last year. I loved both of these shampoos instantly and have continued using them since. The pink one makes my hair very straight so if I don't want to heat style my hair straight, I use this to get a close enough look. The yellow gives some volume/wave. I alternate based on what I'm feeling like.


2. Garnier Ultra Doux Honey Treasures Shampoo & Conditioner AND Garnier Ultra Doux Avocado Oil & Shea Butter Shampoo & Conditioner. I was actually sent these shampoos by Garnier a long time ago and I'm SO glad they did because these actually make your hair baby soft. When my hair was recovering about a year ago from terrible damage, I started using these and I couldn't believe how much they helped. I love both these variants, but love the honey treasures a bit more. I reviewed them in detail once too, you can read about that here.


3. Loreal Elvive Color Protect Shampoo & Conditioner: I used to have this as my go-to shampoo about 10 years ago (even when my hair was not colored) and don't remember why I stopped using it (I think it stopped working for a bit so I switched). I rebought it a few months ago when I got my hair colored and wanted to be extra careful with it. Instantly I remembered why I'd always loved this shampoo. It makes your hair bouncy and it's back on my love list. 


4. Pantene Clinicare Hair Time Renewal: I've always hated on Pantene, its always given me hairfall or done absolutely nothing for my hair. I received a few bottles of these in a gift pack and randomly gave one to someone I know to get rid of my stash. She met me a few days later and said that the shampoo was amazing. I looked at her usually-dry hair and it was noticeably softer. I was stunned so I went and quickly tried the one I had on me and loved it too. It made my hair soft and added bounce and volume which was just fab. I used it a few more times just to be sure (trust issues) and it's only gotten better. I'm surprised that Pantene doesn't push this more, considering it's such a great product.


5. Anaphase Stimulating Cream Shampoo: This is a medicated shampoo and it makes your hair very dry unless you use a conditioner with it (with conditioner it's decent). Why it's on my list is because I started using it on a hair doctor's recommendation to cleanse my hair and after using it for a month and switching back to a regular shampoo, I found that it had taken away all the grease/buildup I had on my hair and repaired lots of it. I used it again this year (for about 2 weeks) when I felt my hair was becoming all heavy/greasy again and it did the job. I plan on using it once a year for a couple of weeks. It's available at pharmacies.

Why do I have so many favorite shampoos? Why not just one? Personally, I feel like my hair needs a break from any shampoo after a couple of months. So I use one, finish it and then switch to another. Currently, I'm finishing off the Pantene.

Finding your soulmate shampoo is a journey, bros. Don't lose heart. Keep trying until you find the one.  

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+ How dry and damaged my hair was two years ago

+ + You can read about my hair fix-up process when it was in really bad shape and what I did to try and repair it.

+ + + The shower filter I currently am using.

+ + + + My favorite hairdryer.

+ + + + There's a giveaway happening with 3Footwear right now on my Facebook (here) and Instagram (here) so go ahead and enter if you feel like a new pair of shoes.

My 5 Most Favorite Childhood Books

Reading is perhaps the most fond memory from my childhood. My dad had filled our bookshelves with loads of books, would take us used-books shopping to these tiny little stores on the weekend and patiently hang out while we'd take ages to decide the ones that we'd want (there was a quota on the number of books we could get on each trip so it was always a critical decision).

I lost touch with books somehow when I got into college and have only now made my way back to them over the last couple of years and can't understand why I'd stopped (part of terrible life decisions).

I was recently trying to find book covers of my favorite childhood books for a DIY project and it suddenly became important and urgent that we talk about our favorite books from childhood. So here's my top 5 (there are so many more but let's control ourselves). I cannot imagine what my life would have been like without these books. They actually, truly, SERIOUSLY changed my life.


1. The Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton. This is a series and also my sneaky way of sliding more than just five books into the list. This series was about three kids, Jo, Bessie and Fanny (my brother and I actually named a few of our dolls/action figures after them, don't ask how they were all in the same game together) who discover this enchanted tree that has these giant branches that reach into the clouds and you can get to strange, magical lands by climbing it. The lands would rotate every now and then so you had to come back down before that happened or you'd be trapped in a different land forever. The tree also had tiny houses and occupants which the kids hung out with. It was just the BEST. I'm kind of losing my mind just reliving it. HONEST. Cannot wait for the movie to come out, when is it coming man?! Hashtag impatience.
Image credit: Abe Books


2. The Five Find-outers by Enid Blyton. This was also a series and there were about 15 books in it and I read them all (my childhood was owned by Enid Blyton therefore 70% of my favorite books are by her). These five kids - Larry, Fatty, Pip, Daisy, Bets and a dog would solve mysteries in their town during every holiday (such eventful lives) and would always beat their local policeman, Mr. Goon, at it (I had my sympathies for him). I loved these guys SO much and the mysteries were actually so solid I could never crack them.
Image credit: Peakirk Books


3. St. Clare's by Enid Blyton. These books made me want to just leave my home and go live in a boarding school. This was a series where two sisters were gradually moving through grades at their school, St. Clare's, and it was SO GOOD, you guys. Their lives at the boarding school, their friends, dorm life, challenges, it was amazing. They practically grew up in the books from first grade to the sixth (?) and it was super fun to join a new class/graduate with them each time.
Image credit: Childrens Bookshop


4. Anne Of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery (and sequels). SUCH a favorite. Anne is a red-haired orphan girl, who's shy and awkward (initially) and gets sent to the wrong family by mistake, who were actually expecting an orphan boy to help out around their farm. The story follows Anne's life as she moves in with her new family, her school, around town. She grows up from a kid to a teenager in the series and because I read these when I was slightly older (about 12 or 13?) it was an absolute blast having that age demographic to read about. This is also coming out in a movie, does anyone know anything about that, please? CosIwannawatchit. 
Image credit: Amazon


5. Taleem-o-Tarbiat. This isn't a book but an Urdu magazine but one that I was obsessed with and would read cover to cover as soon as I'd get my hands on it (my dad would get a copy at the beginning of the month without fail just for me). And because it would come out once a month only, I'd read the same copy many times in wait of the next one. My absolute favorite in it were the stories on Chacha Bhulakkar, I LOVED that guy. I wish I still had a couple of old copies of this magazine, *insert sad face*.

I recently got a couple of these books for N's niece because she's in that age and I really want her imagination playing up the way that these books do. If you have kids, you should definitely get some of these on their bookshelves, they're worth more than any other recreational activity you could work out for them. PROMIS.

There are so many more books from that time that I love, love, love. SO MANY. Sigh. Tell me yours?

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+ If you're a fan, there's an actual Anne of Green Gables clutch that you can buy. Here's the link for Pakistan (and everywhere else too because international shipping) on Polly & Other Stories.

+ + There's a giveaway happening with 3Footwear right now on my Facebook (here) and Instagram (here) so go ahead and enter if you feel like a new pair of shoes.

Timeout: A Korean Beauty Blog Find. And More.

1. Since Korean skincare is suddenly back (wasn't this a thing a couple of years ago?), for those of you who might be wanting to read more about it, here's a Korean beauty blog for you (doesn't get better than that). It's a bit out there in some places (reference: donkey milk) but enjoy. Here's another interesting piece on someone who tried the Korean skincare routine for a week and her results.



2. I've been wanting a swing chair at my place for the longest time. I even got one a couple of years ago but our apartment's structure couldn't handle a hanging swing (and I didn't want one with the ginormous base stand). It's my life's mission now to have one of these at some point in my life.



3. In case you wanted to see what Kim K eats everyday, People has a few meal plans for you.


4. Tips on getting your financial life together.  



5. 10 insights on remarkable parents from a therapist.

Until next time.

There's a giveaway happening with 3Footwear right now on my Facebook (here) and Instagram (here) so go ahead and enter if you feel like a new pair of shoes.

Fridays

I had a super exhausting yet satisfying week because I decided to go into an organizing frenzy everyday after work and decluttered my place like a nut. It feels SO good. I sorted through my clothes, shoes, bags, jewelry, linen, laundry room, storage, office desk, dishware - took out everything in excess and donated what was in good condition so hopefully someone else could make better use of it than I did. I'm going to rest well this weekend because IDESERVEITTHANKS. Wearing Wet n Wild MegaLast Lipstick in Dollhouse Pink 967. 

Newly organized jewelry drawer. If your place is a mess, don't worry. Everyone goes into major cleanup mode once in a while and then everything sorts itself out. Your time will come too.


This has got to be best coloring book there ever was. I ordered it for a project (which I'll share if it works out) but if you're into adult coloring, get your hands on it. Just search for 'The Passive Aggressive Coloring Book', you'll find lots of links for it online. I got mine from Desert Cart.


One of my all-time favorites (with fake posing on laptop). N calls it the superman shade. It's Bourjois So Laque in Bleu Fabuleux 60. I bought this two years ago at a duty-free and it's still got the most perfect consistency.



My niece was dying to get her hands on this poetry book - Whiskey, Words And A Shovel by R. H. Sin so I ordered it for her a few days ago. Just got it in the mail and I skimmed through to see what the big deal was about and this is where it opened and I totally loved it (the rest of the book is a tad too young for me but I can totally see her enjoying it). I ordered it from Desert Cart.

Have a great weekend, guys.