Sunday, 22 September 2013

Going to Cambodia for 3 months to work with an indigenous tribal community. I need help with sponsorship!


Dear all

Firstly I would like to thank all my readers! I have reached over 10000 hits on my blog. Which is totally unexpected but really exciting. Now I need you guys to help me out with the next venture in my life. I need help with fundraising. Share, like, donate towards my cause. I will not let you down and keep everyone updated with a written/video blog whilst I am in Cambodia. You can donate here -> http://www.justgiving.com/Sayantani-Chakravorty

Here is my story =) 

I have been selected to do a placement with Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) with their youth department; International Citizen Services (ICS). ICS is backed by the UK government, the government pays a substantial amount of money to send their volunteers abroad. However the ICS placement also involves fundraising for the charity, so they can continue sending volunteers abroad to share important skills and life experiences. Fundraising also helps to raise awareness about the charity and the projects that they run. If you want to find out more about ICS go on to their website here: http://www.volunteerics.org/
Now to tell you guys more about my placement... 
I am going to Ratanakiri Province of Cambodia to work/support IP ethnic groups around the Banlung administrative town. My placement is based around the VSO livelihoods programme.
Here are the issues that the indegenous population of Banlung experience face these days:

You see, most of the indigenous populations are subsistence farmers (farming that provides for the basic needs of the farmer without surpluses for marketing). However with the pressure of commercialisation of rubber, cashew and cassava EXPLOITATION, subsistence farming is becoming increasingly difficult to sustain.There is additional pressure resulting from legal and illegal logging and land right battles.

Eco-tourism is a small but developing industry in the area, this is a good opportunity for the battling farmers to move beyond subsistence farming (which is proving to be difficult) to develop small scale commercial farms. However, they lack the required understanding of small scale commercial farming techniques or marketing. Microfinance is available for the start ups, however this is currently limited by understanding of the process to obtain microfinance. 

Therefore my role in the placement is to help and work with the local farmers/villagers to implement →

1. Researching, developing and communicating good practices in the raising chickens as an alternate means of food production (protein supplement) for village use and income generation!
2. Raising awareness of the impacts of sanitations and waste management on Eco-tourism. To train and assist local organisations to manage waste around key tourist attractions.
3. Assisting in the development of 'help facilities' and support for the applicants for microfinance.

Thank you for taking the time to read this. If you want more information you can directly contact me here: sc34389@gmail.com.

Now I need you guys to open up your hearts and wallets and make a small donation towards my cause. I will be doing several mini projects to help fundraise my total target amount of £1500 but I need your help to raise the amount which will enable me to go to Cambodia. I will cherish and be thankful for every donation being made to help improve a wonderful community in Cambodia.

If you are unable to makee a donation here on justgiving, because you are abroad (not in th UK). This goes out to all my international friends. Please get in touch with me via Facebook or email and we can solve this little problem =)
Lots of love 
Sayantani 

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Neem face mask

Well, over the past few months I have been absolutely rubbish at writing new blog posts. Partly because I was feeling uninspired and partly because I have been extremely busy. But mainly because I was feeling rather uninspired !

But then I took a long two months holiday/trip to India and suddenly inspiration kicked in, in bountiful. India is a country full of trees and plants of different nature. One of which is Neem, Neem is indigenous to India and has many medicinal and beauty benefits.

To make it easy I will name the key beauty benefits in bullet points:
  • Treats skin infections
  • Addresses acne problems 
  • Good skin toner 
  • Opens up skin pores
  • Also tackles dry skin 
So I put the claims to test, luckily I had a humungous Neem tree growing in my back garden in Delhi. So I got the gardener to get me a handful of Neem leaves and I simply crushed the leaves into a pulp and mixed it with rose water.



And then put it all over my and my little cousins faces (she is going to hate me for this)
Firstly we thought that the bright green colour would stain our skin and we would end up looking like Shrek, so we washed it fairly quickly (after 10mins). But to our relief our skin was not at all stained, in fact my skin felt really nice and clean, and most amazingly in only ten minutes time my skin felt tight and bouncy! So it the mixture worked wonders as a toner too!

Happy with the benefits, I continued using my Neem face mask (applying it for 20mins at a time now) throughout my time in India, which really helped me combat sticky monsoon season without breaking out in boils ! 























Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Top five shampoo chemicals to avoid

Hi everyone, been a long time since I blogged. But I am back again and still as passionate as ever to continue spreading the word =)

So this is going to be short and useful (hopefully). Top five shampoo chemicals to avoid! I will merely state the chemicals and the possible side effects.

Methylisothiazoline (MIT) - Could cause neurological damage, onset of Alzheimers. I have found this chemicals in brands like, Head & Shoulders Pantene and Clairol.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) - This stuff makes your shampoo/soap foam up. However, it is known to be carcinogenic, could also cause skin irritations and allergy

Parabens (chemical preservative) - Could cause increased oestrogen levels 

Phthalates (perfume) - May be related to reproductive and hormonal problems

Formaldehyde -  Weirdly enough this chemical has been used for preserving the deceased before burial. So yes they use that stuff in a lot of shampoo's which usually causes allergic reaction and it may cause damage to the nervous system. Other names they use for this chemicals are; doazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea, and quarternium-15.


So yea just cut this shit out of your life, by trying not to apply it directly to your skin ( I am aware of the fact that we must drink a lot of this stuff from tap water, so try to filter your water before drinking). And keep an eye out for these five chemicals (these seem to be the most harmful ones) 

Methylisothiazoline (MIT)
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS)
Parabens (chemical preservative)
Phthalates (perfume)
Formaldehyde 



Thanks for reading & leave a comment =) 






Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Dirty Thrifty Shopper

I realised that I should blog about charity/thrift/vintage shopping. Considering that I do a lot of that. So here is my new blog, it's all about everything old and pre-owned. http://dirtythrifty.blogspot.co.uk/



Sunday, 10 March 2013

Dr Organic's Rose Otto Face Scrub Review 2013

Well hello... again! I have been trying to get my hands on some decent natural face scrub and in my hunt I came across Dr Organic's Rose Otto face scrub. I chose this product because I find Dr Organic's products very efficient and reasonably cheap (unlike other natural/organic beauty products, which are rather expensive).

Apparently Rose Otto has anti ageing properties and tones skin really well. That being said, I only bought this product because I absolutely adored the smell and I needed a quality face scrub to give my skin a good clean.


All in all, this product is great, it does the job really well. My skin felt clean and fresh after using this face scrub for a few days straight. Also, a tiny bit goes a long way, basically the scrub is saturated with tiny grains of volcanic lava (fancy!), so you don't really need a lot of it for a good ol' clean. And most importantly it's all Paraben, SLS and harsh preservative free, so it is very gentle to your skin.

A 125ml tube costs £7.19 and you can buy it here: http://www.hollandandbarrett.com/pages/product_detail.asp?pid=2580&prodid=2858

Enjoy! 

Ps. I think I might start blogging about my second hand/vintage shopping experiences too... so keep reading =) 

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Vapour Organic's Siren Lipstick range (wish list)


Vapour Organic:  Dare 415 Siren Lipstick (top left) 
Vapour Organic: Torrid 413 Siren Lipstick (top right)
Vapour Organic: Na├»ve 421 Siren Lipstick (bottom left)
Vapour Organic:  Bold 420 Siren Lipstick (bottom right



Mineral make up has come a long way, you can go to any mainstream shopping complex and find mineral eye shadows and foundations (in most colours). However, I find it difficult to get my hands on fashion forward naturally made lipstick colours! 

So...I did some research on google and stumbled upon Vapour Organic's Siren lipstick range http://www.vapourbeauty.com/lips/Vapour-Organic-Beauty-Siren-Lipstick.asp 

I really do love the colours I have picked to show you guys! The top two colours are dark ( I tend to wear dark colours in the winter). I particularly like Torrid 413 (top right) it has a plum undertone, for such a daring colour it is surprisingly flattering on most skin tones ( from what I have observed anyway).

The bottom two colours are very different from each other, but both serve a purpose. Naive 421 (bottom left) is a perfect colour for daytime wear, it blends in with your skin really well and gives you a natural look. Bold 420 (bottom right) is a classic deep red lipstick, dark and perfect for the winter months. 

I would like to do a 'winter look' make up post soon, so keep your eyes peeled =)

Thanks for reading and please leave a comment

Love <3 




Friday, 22 February 2013

Sweet Almond Oil beauty benefits

And the award for laziest blogger of 2013 goes to ME! 
Sorry guys, I have had a hectic couple of months. Never had the chance to sit down and indulge in beauty research and writing. However this Friday evening as my boyfriend makes me samosas for dinner, I will take the opportunity to write about one of my favourite beauty essentials, Almond Oil. 


This particular bottle of almond oil (along with a handful of other things) was given to me on my birthday by some of my best friends (they really know what I like). So, I would like to thank them again for such a wonderful (super useful!) present. 




This is my list of Sweet Almond Oil benefits - (I have been using almond oil for a few months and have definitely seen an improvement in my skin and hair)

  • Almond oil hydrates and enlivens your skin (without leaving the skin feeling sticky) 
  • Promotes the cell-renewal process and helps in eliminating dead skin (good anti ageing product)
  • Brightens skin tone
  • Diminishes dark circles
  • Best massage oil ! Really does help get rid of knots on your back
  • Helps to get rid of chapped lips 
  • Fantastic hair oil (promotes hair growth) 

This morning I had a bit of a beauty mishap, I put on a potent face mask and my skin reacted pretty badly to it, as you can see here... My face became as red as a baboons butt!! 


So I applied quite a bit of almond oil and gently massaged it into my skin. After about 2 hours the redness and irritation of my skin went away completely!! 


Almond oil is generally quite cheap. You can buy a 200ml bottle of almond oil( it should last you a couple of months) for £6.99 here 


Indulge in some essential oils
And leave a comment! <3 













Monday, 21 January 2013

Dr Organic Royal Jelly skincare products ( a review )

For christmas my boyfriend surprised me with some fabulous presents. Out of many presents he gave me, my favorite present was the Dr Organic's gift set. Dr Organic skin care products are exclusive to Holland and Barrett, this is their very own in-house skin care line. They have a huge range of products available, check out http://www.drorganic.co.uk/range.asp for more information on the ranges. I have products from the Royal Jelly skin care collection.

Before I carry on rambling about how amazing these products are I would like to say that the packaging can be a little misleading. Even though most of the ingredients are natural and some are organic, a lot of the products do contain preservatives. I found sodium benzoate in the body lotion and some other preservatives in the other products. But I would like to focus on sodium benzoate, sodium benzoate is a widely used food preservative, it is NOT a natural ingredient, it is synthesised in a lab. More interestingly there is a natural alternative to this ingredient called Natamax, however it is not widely used because it costs significantly higher than sodium benzoate. Take a moment and think about what a messed up world we live in... companies choose an artificial synthesised product over an all natural ingredient to put in food? Why is this happening? Is it because people are completely unaware of the healthy alternatives. Are we completely conditioned to blindly trust companies? Have we become stupid? Or is this evolution gone wrong...? 

Rant over.

However I would like to say I am still happy to use these products because they are far more healthier than other chemical based high street beauty products. All these products are paraben free, SLS free, uses no artificial colours or fragrances and claims to use no harsh preservatives (this is debatable). They are also vegan and animal friendly. 

With all that said, this is the pretty gift set =) I have been using these products for just under a month and I have to say I have fallen in love with them all!


Inside my gift set: Royal jelly body cream, Royal Jelly night cream, Royal Jelly shampoo, Royal Jelly conditioner, Royal jelly body wash and a Manuka honey foot & heel cream.  Let me tell you a little about the benefits of Royal Jelly. Royal jelly is a hunny bee secretion (ewww I know) which is used to feed the larve and the queen bee. Royal jelly has amazing health benefits such as: aiding fertility, relieving symptoms of PMS, it has anti carcinogenic properties, it also works as an anti inflammatory and heals wounds. But most importantly Royal Jelly has anti ageing properties (yey)!! 



This is my Royal Jelly skin lotion. It is a rich moisturising non sticky body lotion and smells of honeeyyyyyy just like the rest of the range. I would highly recommend this product for the winter months. I alternate between body oil and Dr Organic body lotion when I moisturise. Don't worry I still love my all natural oils =)



I love my Royal Jelly night cream!! I think I will be buying this product again. I put the night cream on at night. In the morning I use my all natural Argan oil to moisturise my face. Check out my post on Argan oil. http://lovenaturalbeautyjunkie.blogspot.co.uk/2012/11/winter-all-natural-hair-care-supply.html 



The shampoo and conditioner do what they are supposed to do. Gently cleanses and moisturises my hair. The natural fragrance is really strong, my hair smells of honey after every wash for the rest of the day =)




The body wash has the same lovely honey smell. It cleans and hydrates my body really well. Leaving my skin feeling really nice and fresh. The body wash is almost chemical free, therefore I feel safe to use this all over my body without feeling that the Ph balance in my lady bits could be disrupted.



And finally let's talk about the odd one out of the box. The Manuka honey foot and heal cream. I get really dry heels in the winter and I find it difficult to moisturise my feet with oil because it's just too greasy and it spreads all over the floor and creates a mess. Before using this foot cream my heels were quite hard but ever since using this foot cream I have seen a significant difference in the texture of my foot. It is considerably smoother than before.
So this works eh =)


Overall I am quite happy Dr Organic's skin care collection. None of the products cost more than £10 so it is easy on your pocket. Check out the individual prices here: http://www.drorganic.co.uk/jelly-products.asp

Enjoy =) 






Sunday, 6 January 2013

Natural DIY Turmeric and milk face mask

It's early January and we are all feeling the cold. The cold winter weather can be harsh to your skin, leaving it dry and lifeless. So I decided to experiment with home made face masks and came up with the perfect solution for dry and dull skin! I also didn't want to spend any extra money to make a face mask or to buy a new product, so I experimented with what I had in my kitchen. Here is my recipe for the perfect face mask (at least for my skin)


You need: milk, olive oil, flour, honey and turmeric. If you have one or two less ingredients don't worry about it mix what you have.



First you can add the flour, I put in a large tablespoon of flour. Flour helps to thicken the face mask so it isn't too runny when you are applying it to your face. 


Then you can add literally a pinch of turmeric (an indian spice used in most curries), this is probably the most important ingredient. Turmeric gives you a natural  healthy glow and it also has anti septic properties, turmeric can heal skin burns or any other skin irritation. But be very sparing with this ingredient because if you use to much of it, it can actually stain your skin yellow for a day or two. So use very little to give you that perfect glow. 


After the Turmeric add a tablespoon of olive oil. Olive oil is an all natural wonderful moisturiser. The use of olive oil to moisturise and purify your skin has been dated back to the ancient Egyptians. If they have been at it for so long then why shouldn't we give it a go? 



Now add two tablespoons of milk. Milk is one of the most nourishing food you can consume.It is full of nutrients and not only is it beneficial for your health it is also a great nutritional beauty aid.



And the final ingredient Honey. Honey also works as a mild anti septic and reduced free radicals in your skin. Honey is known to promote growth of new skin (this is a great ingredient for ageing skin). 



Finally mix it up well to make the paste. The paste is sightly runny but not runny enough so it drips off your face. If you feel like it is too thin then just add a bit more flour to the paste. This should be enough for 2-3 applications. Make sure you use it within a week otherwise it may go off because all the ingredients are natural so they can rot.



And apply, leave it on for 15-20 minutes and wash it off with luke warm water.


Enjoy =) 


















Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Bare Minerals top pick make up set review !

I am very happy to say that I am finally a proud owner of Bare Minerals make up ! I felt like it was about time I gave up any unnatural make up products and make the complete transition to NATURAL make up. I read many blogs and reviews and noticed that people had only positive things to say about Bare Minerals make up. And most importantly a very good friend of mine started using the products sometime last year,  ever since then she has been telling me to buy the foundation but i kept putting it off. But finally I got around to purchasing the Bare Minerals top pick make up set!

 So this post is dedicated to Georgia thank you for introducing me to these wonderful products, every penny was well spent (finally have my own foundation and won't pinch yours next time you are around ;).

Right, so firstly you have to admire the packaging. It comes in a pretty feminine box, a perfect addition to your dressing table or just a good place to keep all your products together in one place, so it doesn't get lost in your make up jungle.



The box contains Bare Minerals foundation, bronzer, 2 eye shadows, a lipstick and a foundation brush. I have to say this is probably the best foundation brush I have ever used, very light and fluffy and most importantly works perfectly with powder basedd make up.



The lady working at the Bare Minerals counter at Debenhams was lovely and helpful. She took her time and did a perfect color match for my skin. My foundation color is medium beige, I applied the foundation and it felt really lovely and light. Like I had no make up on what so ever, and it also gave me full coverage! The bronzer is a lovely warm color but a little too dark to use in the winter months, so I will be saving that for the summer =)



Now let's have a look at the eye shadows, both the color's are very wearable. The light rose pink (whisper) is perfect for day time wear. And the brown shade (twig) is ideal for night time. Both the shadows have a little bit of shimmer added to it. But when applied it is subtle and really emphasises your eyes without looking too over the top. I have to stop here and just say how incredible these products are, remember they are all 100% NATURAL. What more could you ask for!



Now moving on to the lipstick, I think this color (Parfait) practically suits most skin/lip tones. The color is very natural and perfect for daily wear. The lipstick is also very moisturising, I have worn it all day and my lips still very very moisturised and the color has stayed on well throughout the day. 

To conclude I would like to say that I am more than happy with my purchase specially because this kit is on sale at http://www.debenhams.com/beauty/bareminerals for £25 (originally £42).

Remember, these products are natural (mainly made from minerals and essential oils), they are also 100% usable and effective. I could not ask for better make up for my skin! If I am going to paint my face, at least the paint is naturally made and causes minimal damage to my skin.

And finally HAPPY NEW YEAR