An old Hyundai ad aired in Kenya comes to mind when I come across the word Lakmé. No association with the car manufacturer, just they used the hauntingly beautiful Lakmé Viens, Malliká: Duo Des Fleurs by Léo Delibes as the theme for the advert (seriously, have a listen here).
But Lakmé is also a big Indian cosmetics and skin care brand. I recall in the 90s, as I leafed through my mother’s lady magazines and encountered the indescribably beautiful Aishwarya Rai proclaiming Lakmé the secret of her looks. I wonder how many women bought tubes of lipstick to emulate the same.
All this time, my exposure to the brand was limited to print adverts until I chanced upon it in Malaysia last year. Access to beauty products designed specifically for my skin type? Had to buy!
Rob of V-Pub is a patient man. I say this because he asked me more than a month ago to do this challenge and it is only now that I am getting round to it. On this occasion though, it is not from want of trying or lack of enthusiasm – I have simply been up to my eyeballs in less enjoyable things. So on with it now. I hope you enjoy reading my list. And I welcome you to add your own.
In my culture, oiling hair is a universal thing. As a child, much to my loathing, my hair was thickly oiled and tightly braided each week by mother dearest. It made my hair smell like food, nauseatingly slick, a magnet for dust and unbearably unfashionable. It had the then-unappreciated effect of conditioning my locks, making them long, shiny, strong and manageable. Of course, I cared nothing for this and looked forward to Sundays when I could shampoo my hair and rid it of the ghastly slick, and wear it loose and free nearly all day. Oh joy!
Hair oils, then are not unfamiliar to me. The weekly ritual died out once I was in high school after successful protest. But even now, I do treat my hair to some nourishment via oiling every three months or so.
This sachet of Hair&Me Hair Rejuvenation Treatment made me smile when it arrived in the mail. Memories came flooding back of idyllic Sunday afternoons, spent with a scowl on the face, head swaying with every tug of mother’s hands behind me, coaxing my hair into the firmest pigtails known to woman.
I’ve got a keen sense of smell. I think it’s to make up for my godawful eyesight (no, really, I won’t know if it’s you waving at me from across the street or the karate kid practising his wax-on wax-off).
Having the nose of a bloodhound has its pluses – I can usually break down what is in a dish, ingredient by ingredient. But it also has its drawbacks – think crammed, inner-city tram during peak hour . . . . . farts, dim sims, hair product, stale coffee and unwashed bodies (yes, I can tell if you’re on your period).
[Ahem, thanks for reading on]
Writing a fragrance review then might seem a natural thing for me to do. But this is far from the truth. Sure, I can describe perfumes as floral or woody or spicy or powdery. But I am still learning the vocabulary and various notes. For now, I simply either like a fragrance or I don’t.
Despite an extensive perfume collection, because I am easily bored, I am constantly looking for new scents . . . they evoke memories and fantasies and take me to weird and wonderful places.
I was at Mecca Cosmetica in Myer a couple of months ago, at the till waiting for someone to take my monies and hand over a bottle of Aqua Universalis (Maison Francis Kurkdjian) when I was introduced to Bal d’Afrique by Swedish house Byredo . . . .