Hair lengths – explained!

There are so many new words & in particular acronyms I’ve had to wrap my head around since I’ve started my hair journey almost a year ago now. And yes, Google is fabulous but sometimes it’s just a little overwhelming – at times it felt like I was googling every 2nd word! JBCO (Jamaican Black Castor oil) , BC (big chop), EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) – how much time do you have because the list goes on & on…

It’s with that in mind that I’ve just swiped this chart off one of the hair care pages I follow, Nappy Sisters explaining the various hair lengths – I knew I had to share. Perhaps the one that’s been left off is  TWA (teeny-weeny afro).

These lengths can be referred to with or without shrinkage (usually with) but rather clarify with whomever you’re chatting to as there is a big difference between the 2 given just how much our hair shrinks.



Can you imagine having to manage hair at tail bone length or longer! My arms hurt just thinking about it 🙂

My goal length for 2013 (i.e. by the end of the year) is NL (neck length) & I plan to give my hair loads of TLC to get there asap. Instead of focusing on length & curl definition like I did at the beginning of my journey, I have realised that if I just focused on having the healthiest hair possible, those things will inevitably come with it. Ultimately I would love to be at BSL (bra strap length) in a couple of years (why can’t it be sooner!?).

I’ll be doing a length check in a few short weeks (minus shrinkage) since it’ll be the 1 year anniversary of my big chop. I’m planning to go in-salon for a protein treatment & blow dry.

Are any of your hair goals related to length?

If you missed my most recent 9 month hair update post, check it out here.

Be kind to your hair….


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Food, fabulous food at V&A Market on Wharf

Though I get to go back to Cape Town often, I’m always amazed how much changes in my little (ok, not so little) city between my trips. It’s great that there’s always something new to come back to & look forward to each & every time. The challenge of course (& I’m always up for it, don’t get me wrong!) is making choices & then trying to cram them all in while having a “restful” holiday.


Enter the yumminess!

IMG_20130119_100440And so it’s become tradition for me in the weeks leading up to each trip to have a “Cape Town to do” folder & by the time I land, it’s usually a little overwhelming & I don’t quite know where to start.

Cape Town has seen quite a few markets added to their scene over the last while & the V&A Market on the Wharf‘s fresh food & produce market is one I visited at least 3 times while I was down on my last trip. Be sure to check their trading hours – we arrived to closed doors & were a tad puzzled one day.

I’m told it’s in what used to be the Musica warehouse though I’ve been out of Cape Town so long I still remember it as the spot where the Planet Hollywood restaurant was (did I just give away my age?). Head to the direction of the aquarium & you can’t miss it. They opened for business early December 2012 & entry is free (yay!) – I can’t stand paying to enter a market no matter how posh it promises to be…

Of course we arrived hungry & immediately set about exploring what would be lunch!


For starters (yes there were starters!) we had Aunty Moona’s Gourmet Samoosas. What a brilliant idea & the flavours were delish. You can choose from delectable meat or vegetarian options like pumpkin & sweet potato with cinnamon. The humble samoosa is humble no more!

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Rèvèrence de Bastien Talc – Review

I count myself really lucky to have been able to return to the One&Only spa for that pedicure again a while back as a surprise gift. I was a little ashamed that I hadn’t taken up their advice in terms of caring for my feet (i.e. stay away from all foot files & anything else abrasive) since my previous visit but hey my toes were in for a treat so I was happy.

After the treatment I decided to invest/splurge (take your pick!) in one of the after care products & based on my therapist’s recommendation I decided to go with Rèvèrence de Bastien Talc from this bespoke range.

IMG_20130119_094002Beautiful packaging – not that I’d expect any less from Bastien Gonzalez!

Basically the promise is that Rèvèrence de Bastien Talc used daily works to protect your feet (it has antiseptic properties) from perspiring, overheating & most importantly (for me anyway) to keep them baby soft.

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The Foundry Café – a new Jozi favourite

Before we set off for the holidays we made a turn at The Foundry (aka Foundry Cafe) to see what all the fuss was about. Rave reviews were abound so my expectations were already quite high & we were not disappointed in the least.

Parktown North’s new favourite kid on the block opened just months ago in September 2012 & has already made quite a name for itself (read don’t go if you haven’t booked!)


Inside the restaurant – there’s a cool, laid back buzz

They have a separate lunch & dinner menu but are best known for their local & international craft beers (which we didn’t sample but must be good because it looked like everyone was having one!)


  • The food was excellent! In particular my salad (see below) which really gives salads a good name (yes, really!). It was super fresh, tasty & really interesting with an unusual combination of flavours. I only wished that they’d taken the skin off the chicken (there was a lot of it).
  • The service was very good. Definitely way above average waiters. Sharp & efficient.

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Kat van Duinen Design – loads to lust

540802_465796876791229_1405917827_nJust when I thought I had seen all that the Old Biscuit Mill had to offer, I walked by Kat van Duinen & the leather goods on display immediately pulled me into the store. One of the things I really enjoy about Old Biscuit Mill over its Jozi counterpart is the fact that there are several permanent stores aside from the Saturday market & this just store called my name…

IMG_20121216_205204The store is uncluttered & beautifully laid out.

Kat van Duinen describe themselves as “a manufacturer of high quality African inspired garments using natural materials designed to fit into modern lifestyles. Uncomplicated & functional.” Items are locally produced.


I love large carry-all bags & I don’t believe they need to look sloppy at all! These ostrich leather ones are to die for (an acquired tasted for me). The snake-skin clutches remind me of the ones I got in Bali

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Shopping off the beaten track – Salt Circle

I’m bored with malls & I’ve been off shopping for months (this needs a blog post of its own) but when I stumbled across Salt Circle right across the road from The Old Biscuit Mill I felt like I’d been let in on one of Cape Town‘s little secrets…


I’ll start with one of my favourites, Common Thread. I loved this particular dress so much I had to have it! The styles are great (not over the top but still fashionable) & its nice owning a few pieces you know the rest of the world won’t have & not have to break the bank. I could go on & on but you can read more about them here & here.

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Fast & Remarkable is an awesome space in Salt Circle. The 1st thing that caught my eye was that they serve one of my favourite coffees, Origin – too cool!

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They run a digital marketing agency from the space (how awesome is that!) & also sell their own awesome high quality Fast & Remarkable (subtly) branded merchandise like hoodies, organic toiletries (which they make themselves). We must have spent an hour + in the store chatting to the owners.


You know I have a weakness for all things leather!


Locally produced Oh-lief specialise in organic baby products (ok I’m a little broody) using olive oil & beeswax as the base ingredients. The entire range is free of petroleum, parabens, fragrances & all the other nasty stuff. They were closed on the day I popped in but its top of my list to go back & check them out.


Antiques shopping is one of my new favourite hobbies & I saw some neat pieces at Karizma Decor. Pity about my luggage allowance 🙂


I swiped this pic off their site – Jeannie D in a Jacqueline Kolbe Millinery design at the 2011 Durban July

Another store I loved but couldn’t take in pics in (they wouldn’t allow it understandably I guess) was Jacqueline Kolbe Millinery – that’s a hat maker. Have you ever been in a dedicated hat store? It felt totally Kate Middleton being there & the hats are so beautiful! I’m up for any occasion that requires a hat especially high tea!


When you need a rest from the shopping I highly recommend refuelling at Forget Me Not Eatery. They also have a stand at the Old Biscuit Mill. I sampled one of their steak pies – it’s a generous size & so meaty, not to mention halaal. On this day they were actually busy baking, it smelled too delish!

A couple more stores looked interesting but were closed so I’m definitely heading back on my next trip to Cape Town. If you’re tired of malls, car guards & queues, definitely pop by Salt Circle for some cute unique, finds!

Happy Sunday & have a good rest if you’re back to work tomorrow!


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The Argentinean-the best croissants in Jozi

While we were out & about checking out The Whippet one afternoon, I noticed The Argentinean across the road & while the name kinda rang a bell, I couldn’t quite place it. As soon as we entered I suddenly remembered having read about it somewhere along the line – they’re known for the best croissants in Jozi.

Now I absolutely love croissants & I totally blame them for the current state of my thighs.  A good, light, buttery, melt-in-your mouth croissant (if it’s just out of the oven its a major bonus!) is completely irresistible no matter the time of day or night & I always need some coffee/tea to wash it down.

IMG_20121209_172925The Argentinean – well worth the drive out to the Linden neighbourhood.


The decor theme is Argentinean football inspired so there’s something to keep the boys entertained too!

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Crabtree & Evelyn Summer Sale

Those close to me know that I’ve been off shopping for quite a while now (long story that needs a blog post of its own) but there are maybe 3 sales I would never ever miss in the world & Crabtree & Evelyn’s is right up there.

00000000002%20-%204%20Jan They do a 2 big ones annually (Summer & Winter sale) & this is when I stock up for the months ahead. Once you’ve tried C&E its pretty hard to go back to anything else. As much as I love this brand I can’t afford it ongoing at full price so when I say that I diarise their sale dates I’m not even nearly joking!

Anyway let me cut the info you really want – the sale dates:

Store Sale Dates
Design Quarter 17 Jan – 3 Feb
La Lucia 17 Jan – 27 Jan
Hyde Park 17 Jan – 27 Jan
Cavendish 24 Jan – 3 Feb
Waterfront 17 Jan – 27 Jan
Sandton 24 Jan – 10 Feb
Menlyn 24 Jan – 3 Feb

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My struggle to go natural

Whenever I’ve blogged or spoken about going natural, I’ve always said that my only regret is that it took me so long to do it because I thought about it for a year before I actually took the leap. Well I lied.

A friend recently reminded me of a pyjama party we had where we were trying all kinds of tricks to turn my relaxed hair curly – back in 2009! This mostly involved using heaps of conditioner on my very wet hair in the hope that it would ‘shrink’ & curl along with various scrunching techniques.


2009 – trying to create curls on my wet, freshly washed & conditioned hair. As you can see in this picture, I’m sans make up & sans curls.

I even bought a diffuser attachment for my beloved Parlux hair dryer. These tricks had my hair looking ok-ish & curly when wet but when it dried oh gosh when it dried it was one thick bush – not a curl in sight. I even went to work with this hot mess for 1/2 weeks & colleagues had kind words but what they didn’t know was that I was in the bathroom every 2 hours spritzing water & conditioner on  just to keep it under control. Of course it didn’t last (thankfully) & before long I booked myself in for a relaxer. Relief.

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Running in the city

The exercise avoidance phase of my life (that’s lasted my entire life) is over. I think.

Somewhere in November after having the idea floating in my head for months I got off the couch, got dressed & went for a run (ok, more like a walk). I thought it best not to question it. And I’ve been running/walking ever since.

There’s a great quote from Nike that I love & it’s stuck in my head ever since I heard it around the time they did the 1st Run Jozi in the CBD in 2011…

If you have a body, you’re a runner

And that’s really why, when I thought about how I should become healthy & active, running came into my head & stayed:

  • It’s affordable (well relatively – no fancy equipment needed)
  • You can do it just about anywhere
  • It’s time efficient  – there are no “opening/business hours”, you don’t have to drive anywhere. If its light out, open your front door & just go.
  • You think your legs do the work but it engages your entire body – I can feel the muscles in my arms & tummy (currently a boep) working too.
  • It’s a great workout – I measure my heart rate (more on that later) & nothing else gets my heart working this hard


So much to see on these Jozi streets

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