Saturday, September 24, 2016

Making A Pit Stop: Favourite Natural Deodorants

Can we pause to appreciate my excellent pun title?! I deserve at least some recognition, after a long week of work alright! Anyway, my last post on green beauty and my favourite affordable skincare went down well so I thought I'd bring another one back, in a similar vein.

Sweat isn't fun at all when you're trying to concentrate and all you think about is whether your pits stank at work, and whether anyone can sense your deepening panic and fear. A quick recap: we all sweat, even Gigi Hadid (lol don't ask me why she just came into my mind) so we ain't got nothing to be ashamed of. Sweat is the way the body gets rid of toxins, and also keeps the body cool to make sure we're not overheating.

Body odour on the other hand, is a different story. While sweat is odourless itself, bacteria multiplies rapidly in the presence of sweat which causes a breakdown into acids and causes our biggest nightmare... #stanky.

Here's the difference though: the majority of antiperspirants on the high street market uses an ingredient called aluminium chloride, which blocks the sweat glands and prevent less sweat. Hence the name anti-perspirants. They stop you from sweating. Personally, the idea of stopping the natural body cycle to get rid of waste (namely: toxins) isn't appealing at all, and is something which may affect other organs in my body i.e. the face.

On the other stage, enter deodorants - they allow your body to sweat naturally, but aim to use ingredients to combat the bacteria which feeds off sweat. It typically consists of bacteriostatic ingredients: lavender, natural crystals, sage... a lot of natural herbs are used in natural deodorants. Here are a few of my favourites:

The newest in my crew is the MooGoo Fresh Cream Deodorant (c/o MooGoo £5.90 for 60ml) and smells amazingly creamy and fresh. I like using this as a top up throughout the day because it doesn't work as well as my other ones, but still worth mentioning because it's super useful, especially if you're having a lazy day where you're not up and about saving the world. It has lemon myrtle as a bacteria defending ingredient, which is the first I've seen but works quite well!

And now my ever-trusty Salt of The Earth Crystal Deodorant (only £3.99 for 50g)! It's travel friendly because it's not liquid, and you can bring it anywhere without fearing spillage. It's so easy to use as well: just apply it when your underarms are still damp, and wipe the crystal when you're done. Simple and effective. This is one of the longest latest deodorant I've tried, to my surprise, because I thought at first 'as if this crystal mumbo jumbo will actually help' but it did! And for the price, it's still worth checking out if you're unsure if you want to venture into aluminium free territory.

A green beauty cult favourite is obviously the La Vanila Healthy Deodorant Stick (£10 for 57g) in pure vanilla (£10 57g). It uses a variety of ingredients like seaweed, lemon and honeysuckle to diminish presence of bacteria. It smells amazing, and it's my #1 everyday. I'm on my second tube, so you know the love is real! It's the priciest one out of the bunch, but worth every penny for me personally. Plus I have a rotation of choices with my other three so it's no problem ;-)

Finally, we have an underdog: Lafe's Roll On Deodorant (£4.49 for 3oz). My mum bought this back from Canada when she went and handed me one. I was initially skeptical because it was a very very thin liquid and I didn't think it would be 'powerful' enough to help with odour. But boy, was I wrong. I love it on the days I don't use my La Vanila one, and it's a perfect everyday deodorant. It's got a pleasant smell, not too strong and just enough to give a subtle scent. Like the rest, it uses natural ingredients for pesky bacteria growth! This one's a star with hemp, coriander and witch hazel.

Other deodorants I like which are aluminium-free: Jason's Calming Lavender Deodorant, Neal's Yard Lemon & Coriander Spray Deodorant, Malin + Goetz Eucalyptus Deodorant.

Phew that was a long one eh? But one thing I'm trying to do is write more about green beauty because it's something I'm still exploring and have a huge interest in and thought it might be useful for anyone looking to go into natural alternatives, in a simple and easily understandable way :-) we'll be back onto the exciting things of fashion and food in the next one!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Dairy-free and Vegan Ice Cream: Yorica! Soho

If you know me in real life, you'll know that I don't consume dairy because I'm lactose intolerant: cakes, ice cream, brownies... the like. A lot of people gasp and tell me "oh my god don't you miss it" and well to be honest, no I don't because it makes me feel bad and I don't think I ever want to eat something that makes me sicker, ya feel me?

While 'vegan' eats and treats have been mushrooming all across London, there's far and few dairy-free dessert places, let alone dairy-free ice cream places! My favourite remains Edoardo in Florence, where they serve fruity heaven concoctions.

Recently, this ol' place called Yorica! has been getting all the attention. A stone's throw away from Chinatown and off the ever buzzing Shaftsbury Avenue, itt's the first (you guessed it lol) vegan and dairy-free ice cream parlour right smack in Soho... and because I loved Edoardo and dairy-free ice cream, I thought I'd try it out one sunny weekend.

As you can see, they also do 'milk'shakes and soft serve (matcha available!)... which is what I went for! They free from a long list of ingredients too: gluten, nuts, wheat, eggs. All you vegans rejoice! I'm not vegan but as far as I can tell, my vego + vegan friends that have been really enjoying it.

For £4.50, I got a big cup with a mix of vanilla and matcha soft serve, topped with the free sprinkles available. You can also add toppings for 65p each but your gurl ain't rich $$$$. There's also chocolate and caramel available, and they both sounded good to so I may have to go for a second round soon... ice cream pals?

Matt went for the traditional ice cream - strawberry, mango and melon. The price for ice cream is the same, and there's many flavours on rotation to choose from too.

For London's first foray into proper dairy-free treats, it's not bad. It was a bit thick for me and I preferred Florence's more fruity and lighter flavours but for those looking for a milkshake substitute then Yorica is your place to go ;-) plus flavours like beetroot and chocolate really intrigued me and I can't wait to bring my friends for a lil trip there for something wild! A wide selection of flavours is also something to explore, especially for those a bit hesitant to venture to the dairy-free side. It's a thumbs up from me, unless Edoardo opens a UK branch here (sadly not happening) in the future...

Hit me up if you're in London and wanna try it out, I need more dessert buddies!

130 Wardour Street


If you have any other dessert places in London that have dairy-free options, holler at me!

Saturday, September 3, 2016

What to Eat in Malaysia!

Growing up in Malaysia, eating was such a big part of my life. It's what unites everyone together, a meal out at the local coffeeshop and the roadside haunts (let's not question the clealiness). These were just some of the things we had when we made the trip back home, and some of my very favourites! I thought I'd show everyone what you should have if you ever head to the exotic East ;-) 


Meet one of my favourite desserts - Taiwanese shaved ice topped with matcha konyaku and and taro balls, drizzled with soy milk. Absolute yum! It's dairy free so I'm a happy lady, and it just full of chewy and matcha goodness you can't say no to. It's also got red bean/adzuki, a Asian dessert staple, of course ;-)


Sweet mother of pearl. I could use some of this right now. Hands down, it makes it into my top 5 favourite dish ever.

Don't let the name fool you, it's a Southern Indian dish. Ain't no chicken tikka sh*t here, nor are there any thick buttery cream I can't eat. Premise: served on faux banana leaves (we debated whether it was because real banana leaves are too expensive), you get a basic serving of rice, dahl curry (for those who can't take spicy food!), chicken curry and fish curry sides. All for a mere price of £8 *wipes tears of joy*.

Have I mentioned: unlimited/free flow/eat as much as you want papadoms!

Top it all off with a legit OG refreshing young coconut. It's my winning meal combo. I miss it so much you don't even know. If there's one thing you need to try if you ever visit Malaysia (any part of it) it this.


Pan mee is another childhood favourite. These are hand pulled noodles (mmm) served with (optional) chilli flakes and topped with an egg and crunchy anchovies. The anchovies were my favourite part growing up. In the soup version, you get a thin but flavoursome broth that will soothe any cold soul. There's a tonne of pan mee stalls in hawker centres (basically a food court with different kinds of food), specialised pan mee restaurants and possibly my favourite morning pick-me-up!


Another soupy choice, another favourite. This might not be everyone's cup of tea, as it does come with beef liver (lol judge me) and beef strips. It's (obviously) beef flavoured, and the soup made a nice hearty meal in the morning before I went to my morning classes... the nostalgia it brings back is priceless, I can almost bring myself back to the afternoons I would have it after lessons.


I know London is home to so many ramen places - too many to count – but when you're in Asia and can't make it to Japan.... A large proportion of the foodie scene Malaysia is Japanese because we luv our azn food and fresh seafood and this meant ramen was also brought over. And who doesn't love a good, warm bowl of ramen? The broth is thick and the pork is rich and... JUST LOOK AT THAT TAMAGO.


Another Japanese place - again I have my go-to in London but nothing quite beats having some authentic af tonkatsu at a specialty tonkatsu restaurant. They have a variety of tonkatsu (different pork sections) and it's crispy, light, and mouth wateringly good...

To close, I thought I'd just insert a random picture of strangers hanging out at a resto-café. Eating and dining, as I mentioned, plays such an important role in our culture: it gives us a reason to meet people, learn and laugh together and ultimately, enjoy good food from a diverse food palette. I suppose this is also why I love going out to trying new places in London - albeit not quite the same, because I would like to think that I can bring the same sentiment to everyone I love here too :-)

This is the sunset one evening near our house, while we were on the way to meet my best friend for (you guessed it) dinner!

Let me know if you've ever tried any of these foods before, or what else you have tried and love if you've been to Asia.... we all know I looooove food.
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