Close-up and personal-Bloggerlife

Heya!

Mid week!I know,all you can think of ,”Just 2 more days”.

I was just relaxing after coming back from my office and was pondering over this subject for a very long time. Infact,I wanted to post something about this,but couldn’t get the courage to do it.

Being a blogger isn’t an easy task.Specially if you are a part-time blogger where you are juggling between your office/college and blog. I have joined blogosphere approximately 1.5 years back and I have literally posted even when I am sleepy,just to stick with the schedule.Currently,I haven’t been able to post mid week due to excessive work. 😦 Will work on it for sure.

All the reviews I post,are genuine and honest.Just because a brand has sent me a sample,doesn’t mean ,I will sugar coat it.I have sensitive skin and I am trying out all these products so that you may find it helpful in buying them.Even when I am suffering from eczema,I make sure to test a little amount of the sample sent,for your benefit.So just to make it clear,for the readers and the brands,I will ALWAYS post honest reviews no matter what. C’mon! I am literally harming my sensitive skin to post ,I will never sweet talk considering my skin. 😛

When I introduce myself,the first reaction that comes from the people,” Oh wow! you get so many free stuffs.” NO!That is so not true.I am an amateur blogger and that means,I don’t get free samples all the time.Secondly,I buy most of the products,even when they are full size,to test it for myself and then review it.If its sent to me,I always mention it in my blog posts.I am not the type of blogger,who wants free stuffs,I am purely here to share my views on anything be it free or paid stuff.I will never promise a brand about positive reviews in the hope of getting free samples.That is the type of honesty I have.

My decision to turn into a blogger rose from the fact that there are hardly any Indian blogger who posts reviews for eczema-prone people.You won’t believe,I have bought products fit for sensitive skin,and it still didn’t work for me.Our skintype is sensitive but it is of different kind.I mention in most of the reviews,whether the product will work for eczema-prone people .

Hope I have been able to share what my site is about.Just thought to share with you all,what I feel about my blog. 🙂 Thank you so much for all your support.It means so much to me. 🙂 Take care,bye :-*

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Aroma Essentials Carrot Sunblock review

Heya !

Keeping up with my regular posting schedule, I am back. Summers are here and you need your saviour ,right? So,sunscreen and summers go hand in hand,and I thought,this is the right time to do this.

I am going to review another product from the Aroma Essentials herbal brand. In my earlier post where I talked about the facial mist, I had told that I was sent samples for review. I am going to link my previous post if you want to have a look. You can read about the brand over there. This sunblock is one of the samples and I must say, this works amazing, honestly.

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Availability: You can buy it from their facebook site & Instagram account @aromaessentials by inboxing them or contact them on +91-9886497272 / 7760988272.They take the payment through bank transfer. They ship worldwide as well. Their products are also available at selected places in India as shown below.

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Price & quantity: I received the 35g jar which costs INR 300.They do have shipping charge of INR 100 so best to buy 2-3 products at once. Since this is in cream texture for normal-dry skin,so you need only a small amount for face and neck. This will last you a month without reapplication.

Fragrance and texture: Strong peppermint smell and the formulation is whipped cream.The smell vanishes after sometime. It is light yellow in color and light in texture also. Gets absorbed easily. However, on my T-zone, it gets oily after sometime. So it is apt for normal-dry skin.

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Packaging: Comes in white plastic jar with screwed lid. All the labels are given. Ingredients list is missing which you can easily ask Madhurima, the owner or see on their Facebook page. Since mine was a sample, so the prices are missing also. But I looked it up in their catalogue. I travelled with this jar on my Gwalior tour and didn’t face any leakage or breakage. So this is sturdy and obviously travel-friendly. Small size is a plus point.

Ingredients:  Carrot Oil,  Carrot seed oil , Carrot juice, Zinc oxide ,Lavender, mint and icecream thickener glyceryl mono stereate.

My views: All their products are made 2-3 days prior to sending them which I got to know on enquiring them. So this is definitely freshly-made and shows how much natural ingredients they use.Expiry is after 6 months.

Herbal sunscreens need reapplication more often than their chemical counterparts as the SPF truly comes from the carrot juice and carrot-seed oil which has an SPF of 38-40.When I had applied it, I forgot to reapply it due to hectic tour so I got tanned 1 shade darker, which was acceptable as I knew how to remove that tan easily in a week. For no tan, it’s best to reapply every 3-4 hours if you are outside in the Sun. Do not be careless like me. 😀

So speaking in terms of its efficacy, I will still say it works, as purely on the basis of herbal ingredients; it did its job fairly well for 6 hours at a go without reapplication and without causing major skin tanning. Also, note that, carrot sunblock will protect you from only UVB rays,  the chief cause of skin reddening and sunburn. UVA rays cause skin-ageing.

Also, on my sensitive combination skin, it didn’t cause any reaction or tingling.My eczema patches also didn’t flare up. My T-zone needed compact after 2 hours though. Absorption power is fast. I didn’t notice any white cast post usage.

This sunscreen isn’t waterproof. However, the brand does have a sunscreen for swimmers which will get the work done. Since I stay in dry summers, I didn’t face any sweating.

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Catalogue

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Catalogue

Overall verdict is go for this sunscreen as it is herbal, suits sensitive skin and isn’t giving any ghostly appearance. 😛

Thank you for reading my post. 🙂 If you like my posts,don’t forget to subscribe here by clicking on ‘follow by e-mail’ in the righthand pane . Also follow me on Instagram at @simplybful and Twitter @simplybful for crazy snippets from my life and beauty world.Find me on Pinterest @simplybful to know what I love in hair and makeup.

See you all in my next post,Take care,bye 🙂

Gwalior travelogue

Heya girlies!

Firstly! This is my first travelogue.So please bear with me if you find something amiss. :-\ Do share your views and healthy criticisms below for me to improve.  🙂

Last weekend,I had visited Gwalior,a historical place in Madhya Pradesh,India.It was an impromptu plan and we set foot for the unknown.Don’t worry,nothing dramatic happened. 😛

If you are an Indian,you may not have heard what this state stores for the tourists.If you are someone from abroad,I guess you may have heard. That’s what usually happens with mass media. 😀

My travelogue will have where to stay and its review,places to visit,myths about that place,transportation and weather report.We had 3 days/2 nights trip starting from Saturday .

Weather and terrain-Gwalior is more of a dry region.Rainfall is scanty here and best time to visit is from Sep-Mar.It gets hot and sunny during the day which you can see from the repeated attempts of covering myself with the stole in the pictures attached here. 😛 Summers are a big no-no to go.Even in March,it gets hot,but it is still bearable.If you are a model or a photographer,you can actually have those quirky photos where the model is wearing a long dressy something in front those rough terrains.;-) March is more of an off-season so we got discounts in our shopping and stay.

Stay-Thanks to Makemytrip.com,we found a hotel of our liking but booked through phone as the hotel people give more discounts compared to websites.We stayed at Hotel Grace,just 5 minutes away from the Railway station.It is on the main road and you can easily get autos or shared autos from there.The hotel people provide complementary pick-n-drop facility from the railway station.Also ,they provide their own taxi for your Gwalior tour which we found cheaper compared to the tourism taxis.We had opted for AC deluxe room,but got upgraded for free as the deluxe rooms were not vacant. 😀 They give complementary drinks on arrival,fruits with every breakfast and water bottle on leaving.Very humble and courteous hotel staff.They also adjusted for our last day stay of 7 hours  as our train was at 8pm and hotel checkout-checkin timing is around noon.We were shifted to normal AC room on that day ,which was also good.If you are someone who loves chic interiors,this may turn you off.But based on the rates,you can’t hope much.However,the normal AC room came with a balcony unlike the AC executive room we stayed in.The washrooms in both the rooms are small,but are neat and hygienic.Rooms are huge and kept clean.The executive room came with classy interiors and small fridge.Service is fast and to the point.Food is also good.Taste and quantity is amazing.If you have opted for room with breakfast ,then do ask for the breakfast menu,as we had forgotten to do so,and only remembered on the second day of our stay.You can tell them to add less spices according to your preference.Since there is no in-house restaurant,they provide free room food service.All the above are said according to the off-season,as I think peak seasons are best to judge a hotel’s service.They have positive ratings though everywhere on the websites.We did get discounts in the hotel room rent and the taxi we took from them was of nominal price charge.

How to reach and transportation-We stay in Delhi NCR,so we had 3 options on how to reach Gwalior.There is a direct flight from New Delhi and the buses ply from Noida to Gwalior.You can drive your car ,no worries.Based on price and time,train service is best.It takes 3 hours from New Delhi Railway station to reach Gwalior.We travelled by Shatabdi express, which is renowned for its short travels, speediness and its food service.Bhopal is the last station for this train and in between we have our Agra,the abode to the mesmerizing Taj Mahal and Mathura,Lord Krishna’s playground.Shatabdi express runs in the morning at 6 AM and in the night from Gwalior,it leaves at 7:45 PM.Breakfast served was okayish as the fries seemed like they were microwaved.The bread was raw and came with butter and cutlet.We had vegetarian dishes on the train both times.Tea served was good.Dinner on the same express was better than the breakfast.Alongwith the Indian bread,we had a mixed dal and sabzi made from cottage cheese.Rice had to be there along with our lip-smacking pickle.Curd was fresh and the ice-cream served was simple vanilla.Overall-we enjoyed the dinner more.You can opt for city tours with Madhya Pradesh Govt.run tourism department from the Gwalior station kiosk itself.We did that when we reached there.They have these open buses which take you around the city and its gems.We left in the tour bus at 11 AM and had our tour end at 4PM.

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The tour buses are cheapest but they are on first-come-first – serve basis.The tours are charged at INR 200 per head.Damn cheap!But their taxis are costly.The local autos also ply to the touring spots,but will leave you much farther away from the actual monument/fort.Best decision is to take the tour bus or private taxi.You can find all sorts of available transportation from the station.

Places to visit-Gwalior is rich in history and royalty.You may not have even heard of it,but it’s a hidden treasure.There are 10 must-see places over there which can be covered easily in a day.Out of them,7 are worth seeing.They have immense architectural designs and history.We took guides at many places to know about the spot.

  • Gwalior fort-The fort glistened during dusk and hues of blue tiles added the perfect contrast to the golden fort.At first site,it looks amazing.Remnants of the blue tiles of the forts add a different kind of beauty to the vacant fort.You can easily get lost if you are alone,so its best to take a guide with you.Mind you! You will find those couples who fight for privacy in the nook  and cranny of these monuments. 😛

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  • Sas Bahu temple- It has 2 temples and is just 5 minutes away from the Gwalior fort.In Indian terms,it means ‘Mother-in-Law and Daughter –in-Law’ literally but the name is a short form for Shastra Bahu.The temples  are actually devoted to Lord Vishnu. The temples don’t have any idols in them.Infact all the temples in Gwalior city have no idols as Aurangzeb,the Mughal ruler took away all signs of Hinduism from these temples and plundered them.He defaced the idols from the wall carvings as well .:-( If you want to see the most intricate designs possible,go there at once.Women forms at various stages of life are carved on the hard stone bringing them to life.You can literally make out story from them.The temple premises offer a panoramic view of the Gwalior city so all you shutterbugs will be pleased definitely.

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  • Gopachal Parvat- On the way to the Gwalior fort and Sas-Bahu temple,they can be seen easily on the hill sides,literally. I loved them so much that I couldn’t stop myself from taking pictures at every angle.Even though Hinduism was prominent in Gwalior,but you see the shadows of  Jainism there once you see this carved beauty.

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  • Teli ka Mandir- It is once again located near the fort.The guide described it as honeymoon temple. 😀 The kings used to wed there and spent 10 days locked up afterwards in the bedroom made in the above portion of the temple.Now,if you go,you will see an empty monument from inside.
  • Mausoleums of Mohammed Ghaus & Tansen- Tansen was the poet/singer,who can make it rain or influence Mother Nature in ways you can never imagine in your life,with nothing,but his voice and songs.His resting abode can be found in this complex.He is laid near his Guru , Mohammed Ghaus,who tutored him to become the great Tansen we know,from the Emperor Akbar’s courtyard.The Mausoleums are in state of neglect,I don’t know why,as people can be seen sleeping in the monuments and littering.

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  • Gujari Mahal Archaeological Museum-What I heard from the guide was that,the king had married a woman from Gurjar caste who couldn’t live the luxurious pompous life of the kings and queens,so she made the king build her a palace of her own liking and had a water pipeline laid,all the way from her hometown to her palace as she will drink water from that town only.That’s some attitude! You rock woman! 😉 The palace has been turned into a museum which houses artifacts and idols from the King’s era.A guide is very much needed here as only then,you can understand the history.The museum needs tickets to enter.
  • I have kept the most royal one for the last.It is Jai Vilas palace museum.The palace is the most aristocratic and houses amazing historical artifacts .It belongs to the Scindia family/Scindia dynasty.It is well maintained.The Obamas have been here.What more can I say.The Scindias do come often to stay.The palace is open to hosting marriages or functions but will cost you a bomb.What the Scindias wore,ate from,their furniture,recreation items,temple etc ,everything can be learnt from this museum.This also needs tickets and they have a souvenir shop.

The other tourist spots are Gurudwara,Surajkund,Samadhi of Rani Lakshmi Bai and Sun temple.You  will like them too,but the richness lies in the places I told you above.

  • Next day,we embarked on the tour for outskirts  of Gwalior.We took the hotel car and it took 5-6 hours to cover all the 3 places.The journey cut through villages and the roads are usually devoid of major traffic.First came Padavli.It is actually Lord Shiva’s temple,which was converted to fort later on and was destroyed by the Mughals.Only the inscriptions remain on the walls of the temple which showcases various Hindu deities and their stories.I wonder how the people made this possible at that time. :-O

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  • It was followed by Bateshwar group of Lord Shiva temples.Indeed,there are so many temples,that you will lose count.It is in the state of restoration though and the Archaeological dept. of India,has successfully brought the temples to their earlier glory.Each temple bears the Shivling .The temple complex has 1 bathing Kund( water reservoir used for bathing for sacred ceremonies thereafter) which has natural source of water , as in the water never dries up.

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  • We were looking forward to the Mitavli trip as we had heard that our Parliament building has been inspired from this very Gwalior monument.Atop the hill,we could see a cylindrical structure from a distance.We had to climb steep slopes to reach our destination and there we go.Indeed,when you enter the premises,you can grasp why the Parliament looks similar.It is also a Lord Shiva temple in cylindrical form.The periphery has small Shivlings and in the centre,one huge Shivling rests in a dome like structure.People do come to pray here even today.

Famous Gwalior items-After having a tiring first day,we ended our tour with shopping.Gwalior will attract ladies for its silk and cotton saris.Chanderi saris and Maheshwari saris are native to Gwalior.My mother bought Maheshwari sari and 2 suit sets from the govt. run store called Mrignaynee,named after the Gurjari queen.There was a sale going on due to off-season.

I read on the sites that Gwalior is amazing for leather goods.Such a disappointment.They don’t have anything special in leather goods.Infact the natives themselves told us Gwalior is known only for the saris and Gajak.I couldn’t find the famous snack/samosa wala over there as featured on Instagram accounts.I bought home a box of Gajak,a sweet biscuit like snack made from sugar,sesame seeds,nuts and other sweetening/dry fruit agent.

As I was sitting on my return train,I reminisced the stories I heard of the kings and queens and what if,I had been born at that time.

PS:Please do not reuse the pictures with / without modification without taking my permission.All these have been taken by me,so kindly respect my wish.

Hotel Grace website

Madhya Pradesh Tourism website

Thank you for reading my post. 🙂 If you like my posts,don’t forget to subscribe here by clicking on ‘follow by e-mail’ in the righthand pane . Also follow me on Instagram at @simplybful and Twitter @simplybful for crazy snippets from my life and beauty world.Find me on Pinterest @simplybful to know what I love in hair and makeup.

See you all in my next post,Take care,bye 🙂

Aroma Essentials Facial Mist-Lavender

Heya!

I know I have been keeping busy for a month , so not much regular with my blog posts. If you follow me on Instagram, you maybe knowing I had gone for a birthday family trip last weekend to Gwalior. I have also decided to write travelogues from now on as I want to share my travel life with you as well. 🙂

So moving on with that, I am back with another review of a herbal product from a brand named Aroma essentials. I received their samples for review and thought to share about the facial mist as the summers have already touched the Delhi NCR now and we need something to freshen up.

Why you need a facial mist?

  • You can spritz it and instantly hydrate your skin
  • Remove dirt and grime by wiping afterwards with a cloth
  • Refreshing and cool during summers
  • Handy if you are outdoors and don’t have water to splash on your face

About the brand: Aroma Essentials is a range of skin care products that may make a useful addition to your daily skin care regimen. These include cleansers, sunscreens, moisturizers, exfoliants, facial cleansers, toners, retonoids, herbal and nutrient supplements and cosmetics.
Natural handmade skin and hair care products-All their products are freshly handmade in small batches using the finest natural ingredients. They do not use harsh chemicals like petroleum or mineral oil. The color and scent of their products occur naturally from their ingredients and essential oils. No artificial colors and scents are added. Store in a cool dry place, away from sunlight.

Their Phone no.: +91 077609 88272

Email: aromaessentials.madhu@gmail.com

Availability: You can buy their products by contacting them on their Facebook page & Instagram account @aromaessentials. The owner, Madhurima, will reply to your queries and messages therein. Their products are also available at selected places in India as given below  and internationally, they ship also.

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Price & quantity: INR 200 for 50ml.You need  2-3 sprays for your face and neck. Depending on how much you use daily, the product can last you a month or maybe more. They take additional 100 INR for shipping within India, so best to order 2-3 products at once.

Ingredients: English lavender oil, distilled water, lavender buds, saffron extracts along with aquaxyl which helps improve the water contact with the skin.(Has peppermint additives for summers).The shelf life is 6 months.They also have another variant named Rose.

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Skin type: Any even sensitive skin

Fragrance: Has a peppermint smell, which goes away in a minute

Packaging: Comes in a spray bottle which is transparent. It has the label and pricing on the bottle. Also they usually label them personally that shows each product is having a handmade touch. The bottle is sturdy and travel friendly. It is a very simple packaging and I am not the type of girl who goes by the looks. If you are someone, who loves fancy items on their shelf, then this may not be your eye candy. 😛

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My views: I never understood the importance of mists before I started using them. They are a savior to my dry skin or when I am feeling dull or sleepy. 😛

  1. It moisturized my skin and the dry patches became less noticeable.
  2. The mist is fine so easily dries up.
  3. Peppermint fragrance freshens up instantly.

I have small patches of eczema on my face and this mist didn’t irritate them at all. Infact, lavender is good for eczema as an anti-inflammatory agent.

Overall verdict is you can definitely try this mist if you want something earthly, that doesn’t cause a reaction to your skin or your pocket.

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Catalogue

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Catalogue

Thank you for reading my post. 🙂 If you like my posts,don’t forget to subscribe here by clicking on ‘follow by e-mail’ in the righthand pane . Also follow me on Instagram at @simplybful and Twitter @simplybful for crazy snippets from my life and beauty world.Find me on Pinterest @simplybful to know what I love in hair and makeup.

See you all in my next post,Take care,bye 🙂

Incolor matte me lipstick shade-402 review

Hi everyone!

After being requested by one of the followers, I am back with another review of a matte lipstick from a UK brand named Incolor. Correct me if I am wrong. 🙂  I surveyed the lipstick everywhere and checked on every online site. I found this to be genuine and cheapest on the Instagram stores.

For a long time, I wanted a deep maroon-blood shade for my lips. This shade complements all the skin tones. Even though it is more of an autumnal shade, but I don’t follow the trends. 😛

Availability: Available mostly online and in Impressions, Karol Bagh or Khar beauty centre, Mumbai.I got mine from an Instagram store @the_makeup_and_jewellery_shop.They take payments through bank transfer,paytm and COD in Kolkata.

Price & quantity: On the packaging, there is no price mentioned. Due to which the MRP can’t be told. I saw the prices range from 220-300 INR online plus shipping extra. I got mine for 285 bucks out of which the item price was 250.It has 6 ml of product which is quite decent amount.

Packaging: It comes in a simple plastic wrapping which can be torn off easily. The lipstick bottle is similar to Sleek lip creams. Very similar packaging indeed. The bottle has the brand name and shade written on it.No ingredients mentioned. 😦 I love the square shaped bottle as it looks classy.The wand is stiff so had a bit difficult experience during application. Also it is very straight. Doe foot applicator may have improved the lipstick application.

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Texture: It is cream in formulation and glides smoothly on the lips.However,it is very mattifying.So you should have exfoliated and soft lips beforehand. It can easily show your lip lines .It takes 1 min approximately to mattify completely.

Fragrance: Nothing noticeable

My views: I wanted to try this baby after seeing one of the videos of Youtuber Debasree.Here’s her video if you want to check out the review of all other shades in this range.

This lipstick is very pigmented and single swatch is enough. Mind you! You need to be careful in applying this as it is a dark shade and it is an uphill task to remove this if something goes wrong.

It is transfer-proof. I checked it on my hands by making a shape as if you are drinking or kissing. 😛 😀 You need an oil-based remover to wipe this lipstick off. I remove my makeup using coconut oil. It took me 2-3 swipes of cotton pad dipped in oil, to remove this lipstick completely. It survives heavy meals easily.

It is drying, as mentioned above so if you have dry lips, either slather on a lip balm before or stay away from this lipstick. I guess matte lipsticks have always been drying.

Overall rating would be 4/5 .The applicator needs to be improved.In this cost, I believe this is the best matte lipstick that stays on your lips forever.

Thank you for reading my post. 🙂 If you like my posts,don’t forget to subscribe here and follow me on Instagram at @simplybful and Twitter @simplybful for crazy snippets from my life and beauty world.Find me on Pinterest @simplybful to know what I love in hair and makeup.

See you all in my next post,Take care,bye 🙂