Activated Charcoal: Three beauty products I’m currently using

Activated charcoal has been a beauty buzzword for some time now and while sitting in the sun waiting for my hair mask to work its magic, I realised it wasn’t the only beauty product containing charcoal on my bathroom shelf! So what’s the buzz behind this black miracle ingredient?

Known as the ‘black diamond’, charcoal has been valued for its purification abilities for centuries in ancient China and Egypt. The charcoal becomes ‘activated’ when heated at super high temperatures, resulting in a sponge-like quality which is effective at absorbing toxins from the body, making it a dynamic tool for your skin and hair routine. Activated charcoal chemically adheres other materials to its surface and can absorb thousands of times its own weight.

It keeps breakouts under control as it ticks the box for pore-cleansing, exfoliator, tackling impurities, is antibacterial and, if you have oily or acne prone, skin, a sure winner for unclogging pores and removing excess oils.

For haircare it’ll add some volume and lift flat limp hair whilst removing everyday dirt and grime; your scalp will get some TLC too as the natural ingredient (made from coconut, peat and wood), helps with oiliness, dandruff, itchiness and soothes redness.

So here’s what I thought about the three products I’m currently using containing activated charcoal: Davines The Purity Circle Away from Pollution Hair and Scalp Mask, Olgani Mighty Cocoa Toothpaste and Exuviance Detox Mud Treatment


These masks are a godsend for travelling and I keep a couple for getaway weekends or just to change things up in my hair routine. I generally wash and condition my hair on the weekends when I have more time as it’s thick and takes forever to dry and I stay clear of the hairdryer (my winter must), drying it naturally in the sun; I do like to use other hair tools to add a bit more curl. Sadly my hair rarely looks shiny unless it’s been blowdried straight, like after a blow dry spoil or when hair guru David Gilson has given me incredible colour and a blow dry that leaves my hair sleek, shiny with added bounce! I like this particular mask as it makes my hair soft, shiny and manageable.

Sachets available at Carlton salons and costs ZAR125 which will give you a couple of washes.

OLGANI MIGHTY COCOA TOOTHPASTE helps get whiter teeth naturally (although perhaps if I cut down on the coffee and tea intake it would help too!) The toothpaste has fluoride-containing cocoa, charcoal, coconut oil and Zantman gum, is locally made from organic farming, and if you swallow some by mistake you’re not going to klip! Olgani Mighty Cocoa Toothpaste contains charcoal which can be somewhat daunting as your mouth turns black and it gets kinda messy, so be mindful as you’re brushing; I already see a slight difference in my teeth and if it’s natural and environmentally friendly it gets my stamp of approval. Watch this space for an updated photo!

ZAR125 available from Faithful to Nature shop here


Facebook here


EXUVIANCE DETOX MUD TREATMENT formulated to clarify and refine pores by removing excess oil and toxins. I don’t have oily skin but like to use this at least once or twice a month as my skin feels super clean and detoxified and it clears the pores around my nose that sometimes gets a bit bleh. I make hubby use it regularly as he’s prone to oilier skin and as charcoal acts like a magnet, sweeping up surface pore-clogging impurities and environmental toxins its doing a damn fine job. It also contains French clay with a high mineral content which absorbs oil and leaves skin feeling and looking revitalized. A product that suits both of us and I love it!

Available at (It was R874 and now is priced at ZAR699 shop here

Well on that note, I’ll say bye bye and happy Tuesday…all day!!



REVIEW: Beauty Empties

bioderma. veet, elemis, trevor sorbie, eucerin, sisley

I haven’t done an empties post for a while so thought I’d start the year off chatting about some I’ve used before and other newbies: they include Sisley Black Rose Cream Mask, Cowshed Knackered Cow Bath and Body Oil, Bioderma Atoderm Ultra-Nourishing Shower Cream, Elemis Superfood Facial Wash, Eucerin Sun Lotion Photoaging Control SPF50, Trevor Sorbie Tame & Define Firm Hold Curl Cream and Veet In Shower Hair Removal Cream; here goes:

Sisley Black Rose Cream Mask

Sisley Black Rose Cream Mask remains a cult favourite offering skin ‘instant youth’ – rich in anti-ageing ingredients that get to work on signs of fatigue by plumping, smoothing and revitalising skin – just what I’ve needed after a whirlwind of socialising over the festive season).
Not only is it fab to leave on overnight while the ingredients work their magic but it’s brilliant for pre or post-flight, as a precaution after sunburn or the night before a big event. It’s rich and light at the same time and when you can’t pop off to the spa, its the next best option! I can’t get enough of the creamy rich rosy smelling mask! Heaven in a bottle!

REPURCHASE: Yes. The price tag is steep (ZAR2094), but you’ll get at least 10-12 applications

Cowshed Knackered Cow Bath and Body

I’ve written about Cowshed products before and they’re still one of my favourite brands. They’ve changed their packaging but this bottle Cowshed Knackered Cow Bath and Body Oil is still the old style, but not past the sell-by date!) – I do love a body oil as my skin is so dry and what can be better than a nourishing delish smelling oil? Yes, they are oily, but if time permits I walk around the house sans clothing to allow the oil to sink in. All Cowshed products are organic and made from essential oils, in this case, lavender and eucalyptus for relaxing and of course smooth and moisturised skin!

REPURCHASE? Yes, I have already ZAR399 shop here

BIODERMA Atoderm Ultra-Nourishing Shower Cream for normal to dry sensitive skin

BIODERMA Atoderm Ultra-Nourishing Shower Cream for normal to dry sensitive skin lathers up fantastically and is creamy and moisturising. This size bottle is awesome as it lasts long (I’m still using it), with a pump-action for easy use. It has a dual biological action by boosting the body’s moisture level by stimulating the production of hyaluronic acid and protects the skin thanks to its lipid hold.
✔️It doesn’t sting eyes ✔️Paraben-free
✔️. Creamy
✔️faint fragrance
✔️suitable for everyone

REPURCHASE? Yes, definitely ZAR362 for 500ml shop here

TREVOR SORBIE Tame & Define Firm Hold Curl Cream

TREVOR SORBIE Tame & Define Firm Hold Curl Cream
I’m a hair product junkie always on the lookout for keeping frizz at bay and how to keep waves/ curls in my hair. Saltwater isn’t the greatest for frizz, yet I’ve been adding this cream after swimming, (they’ve done away with showers at Dalebrook) to the ends of my hair, gently scrunching using my fingers and allowing my hair to dry naturally. I like this cream as it doesn’t dry out my hair, keeping it soft with beachy waves. I repeat the process later in the day if my hair looks a bit ‘verlep’, adding water to reactivate the cream again.

REPURCHASE? Yes and the price tag is good ZAR 115 shop here and as you only use a little, can last a couple of months

ELEMIS Superfood Facial Wash

ELEMIS Superfood Facial Wash
This line came out a year or two ago and I’ve purchased this twice now as I love the ingredients in it as it makes me feel I’m being super healthy inside and out! (Avocado, broccoli, wheatgrass, kale, pumpkin seeds… I mean doesn’t that sound so green and good for you? It’s a gentle gel wash, doesn’t burn my eyes, and in general, makes me feel clean and fresh! I wrote about the ELEMIS Superfood range a while back, read the link here

REPURCHASE/ Yes ZAR595 available www.skinmiles shop here

VEET In Shower Hair Removal Cream

VEET In Shower Hair Removal Cream
I’m a waxer, shaver and creamer! This product I use specifically on my legs; I have light hair so have never bothered about waxing my legs and VEET works well and doesn’t have that crappy overpowering smell. I leave it on for five minutes max and remove with a sponge you get receive when purchasing this particular tube. It leaves my legs feeling soft and not all dry and is so easy peasy to use!

REPURCHASE? Have already – in fact, this is the third tube!

R 95.99 there’s a special on at Clicks with 20% off selected products until 22 Jan, shop here

Eucerin Sun Lotion Photoaging Control SPF50 i

Eucerin Sun Lotion Photoaging Control SPF50 is a great buy as it sinks in quickly, no white streaks, and doesn’t sting eyes (big plus as hubby plays tennis and freaks out when I make him wear suncream – I keep telling him to wear a sweatband, so cream doesn’t run into his eyes, but men…! ) I have been sent several sun creams to test this summer and this one gets a huge 10/10 (I have a specific suncream post going up in a week on suncreams and talking about their ingredients, but as this is a quick synopsis empties post I wanted to mention it as a real winner

REPURCHASE? Yes ZAR249,99 shop here at Dischem

bioderma. veet, elemis, trevor sorbie, eucerin, sisley

So that’s it for this sunshiny Friday….let me know if yo’ve tried any of these and your thoughts? Are you up to anything exciting this weekend?

Take care



I’ll start by wishing you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR and hope that 2020 is an amazing and incredible year! I’m all for making New Year resolutions alongside a to-do list, however as my resolutions inevitably fly out the window by week three, I’m keeping them simple and do-able this time, by practising mindfulness, being more eco-conscious and environmentally friendly and lastly, being true to myself:

Pinterest quote for grateful heart

I drove to work this morning with a red sky stretched above me and was reminded how rewarding it is to start the work day early with the intention of leaving earlier in the afternoon; it doesn’t always happen, but when it does, what a treat to be home by four!

gratitude quote pinterest

I’m a cappuccino junkie chasing down a second and third before noon and no, I’m not going to cut down on my caffeine consumption this year, but my son has been trying to get us to remove dairy from our diets, (I gave up buying butter last year and surprisingly it wasn’t that hard as bread dipped in olive oil is delish and tasty and coconut oil is a great substitute to cook with, but black coffee….I need to think about this a little more!)

I headed up the Recycling Department at my kids junior school many moons back where I was quite vigilant, yet the last couple of years I haven’t been as attentive, (glass and paper are easy ones but tins and plastic I’ve let slide and unfortunately recycling isn’t collected in our area, so I’ve grown lazy); however that’s all changing as I shall be dropping my recycling at OASIS once a week. OASIS provides work and skills development opportunities for men and women with intellectual disability so you’re doing two positives when dropping off your recycling, (just remember to separate items to make it more manageable).

OASIS has been my go-to place for dumping everything and again it’s a charity, so a heads up to support and if you’re looking for any CDs from the late 80’s to mid 2000’s, go and trawl through over 800 CDS I dropped off about five months ago, (who still listens to those but you never know?!) Oh, and books – loads of coffee table and normal books! I cried when handing them over as I have a real attachment to books, but last year’s intention was to have a massive cleanup and I did it so yay, to live with less clutter in the house!

gratitude quote from pinterest

And lastly, this year I am going to give myself ‘me time’ and practice self-love, (although I struggle with this self-love thing and can I truly do that wholeheartedly?) It probably sounds weird but I come from a childhood where I know I was loved in a bizarre abstract way, but expressing ourselves was seen as self indulgent and wrong and it was ‘ not the done thing’ to talk about our feelings, emotions, discomfort, sadness, truth, so we learnt to bottle things up real tight.

The past is a good lesson on how not to repeat certain behaviours and habitual patterns and I’m still learning to let go of toxic and negative things and people who drain my energy. Getting sick last year was a reality check; if I don’t look after my health and myself no-one else will and I need a positive head space for me and my darling hubby. It’s such a hard topic to deal with and talk about, but my hubby has been diagnosed with vascular dementia and I’m still feeling bewildered and heartbroken knowing I’m losing my best friend, my everything, yet he’s alive right next to me and totally unaware of what’s happening. I get teary just mentioning it so I don’t know if I’m ready to even talk honestly about it, but I have to face reality and the future. I guess the hardest thing is not having the support of my parents, yet thank heaves for my sisters and amazing friends, lucky me!

Brene Brown quote

I was standing in the tidal pool at Dalebrook with a friend on the last afternoon of 2019 and I remarked, ‘gad Dani, I haven’t done or achieved anything this year’ and she replied, ‘you have my girl, you’ve survived’. Her words made an impact, the reality that no matter what curve balls came my way last year, I survived! I know I am not alone in feeling overwhelmed and angst as everyone has their own shit they’re dealing with, but I’m learning to believe in my strength and capability and allowing myself to be openhearted and vulnerable. I’ve been listening to Brene Brown again who is incredibly inspiring, especially on ‘The power of Vulnerability’, watch here

Brene Brown quotes

So what do I mean when I say ‘be true to myself?’ Being proactive in finding support and make some me time whilst being mindful and grateful for everything however small; today I am grateful I had a good night’s sleep, watched birds dance across the red sky while driving into work, filled my tummy with warm oats and cinnamon, had a cup of coffee (with milk) and felt a sense of contentment… it’s going to be a good year… I feel it!

So here’s to a year of kindness, gratitude, shared times with friends, honesty, love and vulnerability!

HAPPY NEW YEAR and have you made any NY resolutions you’d like to share?


brene brown quotes on vulnerability



If you love changing your bags up on a regular basis to suit your outfit or mood, then the deal at ZEMP NATURALS is worth checking out – and you’re giving back to a good cause!

ZEMP/JINGER JACK offers a 25% discount on your next bag purchase when returning your used bag. Not only is this encouraging slow fashion and recycling, but the chance to give back to less fortunate who get the opportunity to own a high-quality bag.

St Anne’s Home provides shelter and care while empowering destitute and abused women and this is where ZEMP NATURALS makes them feel special by gifting the women on their birthday with your used bag after it’s been given a new lease on life with a polish up.


From day one ZEMP NATURALS has worked hard in creating a sustainable fashion brand by recycling and repurposing waste in the office and home. ZEMP NATURALS have a wonderful collection of bags, wallets and more in leather and a new range using jute-cotton fabric. All products are made in environmentally friendly facilities in a safe and socially responsible workplace.

I so love this range I’ll be doing an in depth post super soon (and hope to chat to owner and founder Claire Zemp); watch this space…






That’s it for today…..happy day



Elizabeth Arden Green Tea Pomegranate fragrance

Elizabeth Arden’s new addition to their Green Tea fragrance collection is described as vibrant and sparkling and indeed, on first whiff you’re enveloped in a heady fresh floral and fruity space…

Inspired by the multi faceted sweet pomegranate intermingled with Vert de Bergamot to awaken the senses, with violet leaves, Earl Grey Tea Accord and magnolia at the heart, finishing with white moss, raspberry bloom and musk.

Elizabeth Arden Green Tea Pomegranate fragrance

“The pomegranate fruit tastes and smells as beautiful as it looks. In creating this fragrance, I set out to capture the same sparkling jewel tonalities—each seed bursting with a new sense of vibrancy, color and bliss.” – Rodrigo Flores-Roux, Vice President Perfumery, Givaudan

Elizabeth Arden Green Tea Pomegranate fragrance

A bouquet of blooming lovelies that is fresh, new and sure to put a spring in your step!


Available at Edgars, Woolworths

ZAR460 for 100ml

KIRSTEN GOSS ABODE Collection is about to drop

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

The upcoming launch of Kirsten Goss ABODE collection is an extension of her jewellery brand, reflecting her fascinating and quirky shapes and phenomenal metalwork and the cutting edge pieces will become considered implements and objets for living.

More items being presented are two signature SOY candles, stationary, liquid hand soap and a decadently delish hand & body cream. Expect espresso/mustard spoons, condiment spoons, pickle forks, sugar/jam spoons and serving spoons/salad servers.

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

‘We are super excited to be launching this in our SWEET 16th year of trading’ – Kirsten Goss

The flagship Kirsten Goss store at the V&A Silo will be the main concept store for all jewellery and ABODE collections, with the other three stores carrying smaller quantities.

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection

Kirsten Goss ABODE Collection


ZAR1890 for a brass salad server

ZAR1390 for a sugar spoon or condiment spoon

ZAR1190 for a pickle fork

ZAR 690 for an espresso spoon

CREDITS: Lazy-Eye ceramics, Christo Giles, Klomp Ceramics, Vorster & Braye, Jacques Erasmus

PHOTOS: Kirsten Goss

Don’t you think the pieces are fantabulous?!

That’s it for a Thursday – happy day….all day


Kirsten Goss ABODE Instagram

Kirsten Goss Jewellery





DELLA SS2019 COLLECTION: Q & A with designer Pippa de Charmoy:

Della SS2019 jewellery collection Pippa de Charmay

Della SS2019 collection is created for the modern multifaceted women who appreciates handcrafted outstanding limited edition jewellery pieces. The latest collection includes blue opal, jade, black onyx, malachite, opalite and pink and white chalcedony gemstones. I caught up with Pippa de Charmoy, creative mind and designer of Della to find out what makes her tick, her inspiration, a life mantra and more…

Della SS2019 jewellery collection Pippa de Charmay


My daughters inspire me to be a better mom, friend and boss! I am also inspired by fashion trends. (The name Della originates from combining the names of Pippa’s two daughters, Ella and Demi. As this name has personal significance it creates an authentic brand with a commitment to quality)

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


An early morning run, a stop at Seattle coffee with my daughter on the way to school, and then I get to work by 8am. I have another business which supplies retailers with ladies
accessories and our days are quite busy planning and ordering stock for
months ahead. When it comes to working on Della my designs are all
inspired by my love of fashion and beautiful semi precious stones and a
strong desire to marry these together. My day at the office usually
ends at 4pm then I would pop into the Flanders Mall to do a small grocery
shop and then home. Most evenings are taken up with walking our Daxie
(Dash) which he loves providing that my husband and I are together. We
always set the table and eat together; it’s my most favourite time chatting
about our day.

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


Was creating Della. My main business supplies retailers with ladies accessories and after many years working ahead on jewellery trends for our retailers, Della was created to
fulfil my passion for high quality pieces inspired by practicality, but at the
same time offering a stylish take on high fashion jewellery.

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


A glass (or 2) of Waterford wine and a good series! I am a series holic!

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


Strength doesn’t come from what you can do, it comes from overcoming the things that you once couldn’t!

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


I will be treating nine women in my family for a night away at a Spa in December!

della jewellery collection SS2019


I don’t have any regrets, I try to take bad experiences and learn from them

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


I would love to be a whiz at Social Media!

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


London, Paris and Rome with my family

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


To have a white Christmas with my family
Italian Camino
Trail run the Amalfi Coast
Sail Croatia
Bora Bora

I would love to perform an ABBA song (dance and all) and surprise my

Della SS2019 jewellery collection


Perhaps a new range for a new age…that’s the first clue!

Branching out into more than just jewellery.

Della SS2019 jewellery collection

All Della pieces are unique and quality handcrafted at affordable prices. The utmost care is taken with each item; from the selection of the raw materials through to the satin drawstring bag and sturdy box that it is delivered in, making each order a delight to unwrap.

Della has joined forces with Project Dignity/ Subzpads, and will be donating a percentage of each sale (5%) to this amazing initiative. ‘So many girls are unable to afford sanitary ware and end up missing up to seven days of school every month,’ explains Pippa. ‘The aim of Project Dignity is to reduce absenteeism and dropout rates in schools and increase opportunities for girls to complete their education with dignity. This project really resonates with me as I have daughters and I am thrilled that through Della we are able to partner with this amazing initiative.’

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I love sharing local women’s inspiring careers, lifestyles and journeys – if you have anyone in mind I could interview, please give me a shout!

Take care and happy Monday!!