Tag Archive | Indian blogger

Review : #NextGenPampers Baby Dry Pants!

Of late, I have been using Pampers Baby Dry Pants which employs world’s first 3x channel technology. I decided to share my experience with you guys.

Pampers

It comes in a typical Pampers green pack and has different sizes. Currently, am using size L for my son who is 12 kgs. Size L suits kids weighing between 9 – 14 kgs.

Absorbent channels in Pampers

As shown in this cute illustration on the pack, the wetness is evenly distributed, into 3 extra absorbing channels. This is the very first time any brand has done this. This ingenious idea avoids any wetness to accumulate in one place like it used to happen with previous diapers I have tried on him. When wetness accumulates in one place it sags and your child will want to get out of it ASAP. Please check out this video to understand how the wetness is distributed in the new Pampers Baby Dry Pants and how elastic it is :

That brings me to the next point. After using these diapers I have noticed that my son doesn’t fuss and pull the diaper down at all!. This proves how comfortable he is with the diapers on.

Front & back sides

The stretchy material on the inside that’s soft & also avoids leakage.

Also the stretchy and soft  material leaves no marks on his legs (inner thigh area) or on the waist. What a relief!. I hated it when my son used to get reddish marks on his skin by wearing diapers that were tight..

Thin diapers

It’s surprising that such a thin and light weight diaper performs such heavy duty!. For my son, depending on how much he pees, his new Pampers Dry Pants lasts anywhere between 4 – 9 hours!. It’s so amazing. He doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night due to wetness. These diapers keep his skin dry to touch.

It also has breathable material with micro pores that keeps wetness and humidity away from his baby soft, delicate skin. Also the added baby lotion, prevents rashes. Seriously speaking, my son’s nappy rashes have become a thing of the past!.

What matters at the end of the day is whether our babies are relaxed and comfortable, be it while playing or sleeping and I am 100% sure that Pampers Baby Dry Pants works towards and successfully achieves that goal!. I highly recommend you try this out soon for your child ♡

This range is easily available everywhere, pharmacies, supermarkets or even online.

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Naz ♥

How to : Kerala Style Mutton Biryani (with tips for beginners)!

Hey guys,

One of the very first dishes that I learned to cook, was biryani simply because it’s my favorite. I love to have it any time of the day, lol!. That’s absolutely bad for my waistline but I still do it.. 😀

Biryani preparation intimidates a lot of people due to the various steps involved. But I will make it simple for you and list it in points. Even newbies can try this out and for that reason, I have explained everything in detail and also included several tips. This is my mom’s recipe ♥

Btw, I will be including links to several of the ingredients I mention below so that you can find them easily in case it’s not locally available to you and also because the site that am linking to, gets you everything on a discount and ships worldwide from US.

Ok, let’s make mutton biryani 🙂 . Btw, the spice level is hot. Tone down the chili if you like it mild.

Preparation

Here are some steps that should be done before hand (or during the cook, if you are ok with multitasking).

● Clean the mutton very well. Remove unnecessary fat layers, hair if any and if you look close, it might even have wood pieces in it, from the cutting board used by the butcher. Remove these by hand, wash several times, then add a little bit of salt (for it’s cleansing properties) & turmeric powder (for it’s antiseptic properties). Do one final rinse & keep in a colander so that excess water is gone.

Mutton

Those marked in red, goes away

CleanCleaning mutton

● Ginger, garlic and chilies should be ground together coarsely.

● Onion should be sliced lengthwise & as thin as possible. You will need onion for 3 purposes – to make masala, for raita & for Birista (deep fried onions used for garnish).

Tip – If you separate the outermost layer of every onion and slice that thinly, that’s the best choice for frying, since this layer has the least water content and fries faster.

● Grated coconut & around 12-15 cashewnuts should be ground with a little bit of water, to make a fine paste. Adding this makes the masala richer.

● Tomato should be diced into cubes. Add the juice of 1 lemon to this.

● Coriander & Mint leaves should be chopped into tiny pieces. This is used for two purposes – for adding into masala & for garnish.

Tip – Use the more leafy part for garnish while the stems and all goes into the masala.

Herbs

● Pineapple should be diced into tiny cubes. You just need a handful. Take it into your hand and squeeze to get it’s juice. Dont throw those cubes away now that you have taken it’s juice. These are used for garnish. Add 2 capfuls of pineapple essence to the juice. Keep aside.

Pineapple

● Take 1 tsp of milk (that’s at room temperature) & mix 2 drops of yellow food color in it. This is used also in the final garnish process.

Tip – If using powder food color, go for the slightest amount, like maybe 2 mg or something, coz they tend to be pretty pigmented. If milk is not available, you can substitute with water.

● By now, water should have left the mutton. Make a mix of 8-10 tbsp yogurt, juice of 1/2 a lemon, some mint & coriander leaves, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder, 2 tbsp chili powder, 1 tsp salt. Mix well with mutton and let it marinate for atleast 1/2 an hour.

Tip – Yogurt & lime helps to make the mutton tender while the spices, herbs & salt helps mutton pieces to get more flavor.

● Place a pan on high flame & pour equal amounts of RKG (Cow ghee) & vegetable ghee. Once it’s hot, lower the flame & add about 50 gms of halved cashew nuts. Let it fry just the slightest bit. It shouldn’t become reddish. Remove immediately & then fry the onion in the same ghee. The leftover ghee is used in the garnish process. So, keep that aside.

Fried nuts Onion birista

Note – You can add sliced almonds too along with cashew nuts. Also, golden raisins can be added too if you like the sweet taste that they impart. Fry them until they puff up and remove before they become reddish brown.

Tip : Frying the nuts first infuses the oil with a lovely taste & smell. This transfers onto the onions when you fry then next. When frying onions, make sure there is a good amount of ghee, so that it’s immersed in it. We are deep frying the onion. Next thing, don’t stir the onion. Just let it be. When the onion on the sides start gaining more color, give a slight stir. This ensures golden fried onion. A tip within a tip (Whoa, Inception!) – Before frying the onion, add a pinch of salt & 1/2 tsp sugar to it. It gives the onion birista a wonderful flavor & the sugar helps towards making it caramelized.

Ingredients for meat masala

Mutton

Biryani ingredients

Indian spices

Mutton – 2.5 kgs

Onion – About 25 (Yes!. I do mean 25, not 2-5) medium sized ones (used for three purposes, explained earlier) -that’s roughly 2 kgs

Green chilies – 15
Tomato – 4 – 5 medium sized ones
Yogurt – 1/2 cup
Lemon – 1
Vegetable ghee – 5 tbsp for masala & as required for preparing onion birista
Cow ghee– As required
Ginger garlic paste – 3 tbsp (or you could use fresh ginger and garlic)
Garam masala – 2 tbsp
Coriander powder – 2 tbsp
Chili powder – 3 tbsp
Turmeric powder – 1/2 tbsp
Chicken stock cube – 1
Salt – To taste
Coriander leaves – 2 bunches
Mint leaves – 1 bunch
Cashew nuts – Roughly 50+ gms
Grated coconut – 1/4th of a coconut

Method of making the meat masala

Add 5 tbsp vegetable ghee to a deep pan, on medium flame. Add about 3 tbsp ginger garlic green chili paste. Saute for about 3 mins, until the raw smell of the ginger garlic goes away. Then add onion. Keep sauteing, until translucent/light brown. Add salt (it helps the onion to lose its water content and fasten the process of becoming translucent). Add garam masala, coriander powder, chili powder & turmeric powder to the onion. Saute and mix well.

Add tomato & lime mix to the pan. If you want, you add 1 cube of chicken stock at this point (irrespective of what meat variety you are using. This gives an enhanced flavor). Add yogurt, coriander leaves, mint leaves, cashew/coconut mix. Mix well in between adding the above 4 ingredients. This onion & spices mix is called ‘masala’.

Meanwhile, put the marinated mutton in the pressure cooker (without adding water) and depending on how tender the meat is, pressure cook it for 2- 4 whistles. It should be done to about 80%.

Add this to the masala when it starts to boil slightly. Close the lid. Let it be, for some 10 mins, on sim. This step helps the mutton to draw in the flavor from the masala. Switch off flame & keep aside when you feel the meat is done.

Biryani masala

Method to make rice

Rice – 1.5 kgs (Tip – Usually the rice : meat ratio is 1:2)
Fennel seeds– About 1 tbsp
Cinnamon sticks – 5 one inch pieces
Cardamom – 7-8 big ones
Cloves– 10
Whole peppercorns – 12-14
Bay leaf – 2
Half a lemon
Salt – to taste

Use good quality long grained Basmati rice for biryani.

Long grained Basmati

Wash the rice several times until water runs clear. Strain and keep aside. No need to soak the rice. Then take a pot with 3/4th of it filled with water. Add fennel seeds, cinnamon sticks, cloves, bay leaf, cardamom, whole peppercorns to it, in order to let it infuse in the water. Add salt in such a way that the water actually tastes salty.

Indian spices

Tip – This is because this water is drained away once the rice gets cooked. By making it salty, the rice gets the right amount of salt in it.

Once it starts to boil, add the rice. Immediately add the juice of half a lemon to the pot.

Tip : This ensures that the rice doesn’t stick together when cooked.

Now, be alert and check the doneness of the rice after about 6 mins and onwards. It should be 80% done when you drain away the water.

Cooked rice

Final cooking process

Add one layer of masala at the bottom of the pan that you are planning to do the ‘Dum’ process (which is the cooking of the meat, masala and rice together). Then add once layer of rice. Next sprinkle some coriander leaves,mint leaves, ghee (leftover from making the onion birista), pineapple cubes, pineapple essence/juice mix, milk/food color, cashew nuts (From here on the above will be mentioned as ‘garnish’).

Next add another layer of rice, then a layer of meat masala, then rice, garnish and repeat the above if there is more rice/meat masala. The final layer will be rice that’s topped with the garnish.

Biryani dum process

Tip – Now seal the pan with a layer of foil. This seals in aroma & heat.

Then put on the lid of the pan. Keep something heavy on top of it, like the mortar (from the mortar & pestle thing). Keep on high flame for 3 mins, then on sim for 15 mins. Biryani ready!

Dum biryani

Kerala style mutton biryani recipe

Note – If you are using fish or chicken as your meat choice, fry them first. A little of the oil that it is fried in, can be added while making the masala and also during dum process. It brings more flavor.

Biryani should be served with a yogurt salad called raita.

Method of making raita

Ingredients :

Yogurt – As required
Onion – 1
Tomato – 1 medium sized one
Green chilies – 3
Curry leaves- 2 stems
Salt – To taste

Method :

Chop onion finely. Dice tomato. Add chopped green chilies and curry leaves along with a little salt. Next, squeeze and crush these together with your fingers to let it release it’s juices. Then add yogurt to make it the perfect raita.

How to make raita

I hope you try this biryani recipe. If you do, please share your experience with me & my readers ♡. If you have doubts, leave a comment & I will try my best to explain more. I have put in a lot of effort in doing this post. Would be great if you shared this on any social media channels. Thanks!

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Naz ♥

Five Simple Beauty Tricks While On The Go!

Keeping up with our beauty routine is much easier when we are in the comforts of our home. However, when we ladies are on-the-go, especially when traveling, keeping up with all of these may not be the first thing that comes to our mind. We may not have the time to deal with all the demands of our beauty regimen.

Yet, your beauty routine doesn’t have to suffer even when in transit. Even when we are at our busiest, it is still possible to look our best. Check out these 5 simple beauty tricks while on the go.

1. Always keep hydrated.

This may be the least thing related to your beauty regimen, but for you to have great skin, you must always include hydration in your skin care routine. This is extremely important, especially when traveling by plane. Traveling at high altitudes can cause flaky skin as the air can be very dry. Drink plenty of water every now and then. In addition to that, apply your favorite moisturizer to your face and body for added skin hydration.


2. Treat your hair before traveling.

Being in transit for long periods of time doesn’t do our hair any good. As harsh as it is to our skin, being on the go can also affect our hair. That is why treating your hair while you are still at home by applying hair masks can make a difference. Doing this will suffice, so while on the go, you may simply spray dry shampoo. You’ll definitely look like these top models we see on tvs. Bringing handy hair masks and hair essential oils on your trip will also do.

3. Skip foundation.

Applying foundation is time-consuming. And when you are in transit, it may feel like such a hassle to apply it. So when you are on-the-go, it may no longer be necessary. Instead, use tinted moisturizers as they are lighter than the foundation, but with added benefits. It will keep your face hydrated, and at the same time, it can also cover up dark spots and blemishes. The best thing about this is that it will only take seconds to apply. Even while you are inside any type of vehicle, you can just squeeze a little in the palm of your hand, apply it lightly on your face, and you are good to go.

4. Use multi-purpose beauty products.

This product is heaven-sent to those who are perpetually late. Instead of bringing a lot of products in your bag, you can just use one for several purposes. One example is coconut oil which you can use as a lip balm, face and hair moisturizer, and even as makeup remover! Another example would be tints that can be used not only for your lips but also as a blush.

5. Always bring blotting paper.

Bless the soul of the person who invented this amazing product. When on-the-go, our skin can get very oily, especially in the forehead and nose area. Fret not; instead of redoing your entire beauty routine, you can simply put on that oil blotting paper to get the unwanted shine off of your face.

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Naz ♥

Birthday Giveaway Winners!

Hey guys!

I’ve been gone for a while.. My last post was on Nov 3rd. That’s coz I faced a life threatening condition called Eclampsia on Nov 4th. I was 7.5 months pregnant and all of a sudden my BP shot through the roof. I had eclamptic convulsions and was rushed to hospital in an unconscious state. Emergency cesarean followed and I gave birth to a boy :). Am still recuperating in hospital but there is not much to worry now. My BP is back to normal. Baby is underweight though but slowly gaining weight. I would totally appreciate it if you all would include me and my baby in your prayers..

On to my birthday giveaway winners, that I was supposed to announce on Nov 14th.. All winners are randomly chosen as always.

Eyova Gift Hamper winner

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Congratulations to Bazigha Sameen from Hyderabad!. You have won a generous hair oil gift hamper from Eyova. Enjoy your prize :). After reading my review of Eyova, I have been receiving plenty of enquiries about where to buy it and such. Bazigha now gets to have 3 bottles of Eyova egg hair oil!. Yay 🙂

Glambox winner

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Congratulations to Adiba Khan from Dubai!. You have won either Glambox’s December box or a random Glambox. Enjoy the goodies in your box 🙂

WhipEye ebook winner

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Congratulations to Mary Preston from Australia!. You have won an ebook copy of WhipEye by Geoffrey Saign, which has won the 2015 International Book Award & also the 2015 Outstanding Children’s Fiction Award in the IAN (Independent Author’s Network) Book of the Year Awards!. You have a choice of 2 formats – mobi or epub. Enjoy this lovely book 🙂

I would love to specially thank the three sponsors of these prizes. All three were exceptionally understanding when I informed them of my current situation and were totally ok with the delay in announcing the winners. I have already contacted all three winners :).

I probably will post again only in 2016. Need some time to get back to normality. Hope you all will continue supporting me. Happy holidays ♥

Cheers!

Love,
Naz 🙂

Review : Banjara’s Hibiscus Hair Care Powder!

Hey!

I am very much into haircare right now. I am searching for & trying new hair products, to give maximum support and care for my hair. That’s how I found out about Banjara’s Hibiscus powder. Hibiscus flowers are pretty known for their power to promote hair growth. Actually one can even make use of the hibiscus flowers growing in their gardens to make a DIY hair mask. There are tons of tutorials on how to do that, on YouTube. I don’t have hibiscus flowers at my home though and on my recent trip to the shopping mall, I found this pack which I thought would be great to try out. Hibiscus is effective in combating hair loss, dandruff and scalp irritation. It is also used as a remedy for premature greying. The herb acts as a good conditioner and moisturizer for the hair – making it soft and shiny.

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The pack comes with 5 sachets in them. Each of these packs contain 20 gms and it’s packed in such a way for easy usage. For each application, you can open one sachet and use it’s complete contents. I have seen bulk packs of this powder long before. In such cases, you need to transfer the powder into an airtight container so that it doesn’t solidify into little blocks over time. Banjara’s easy packaging helps to avoid this inconvenience.

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The hibiscus powder is brick red in color. I have long hair now (just above my hips) and 20 gms is enough to cover my scalp and hair. If you have short hair, a sachet is good for 2 applications and if you have very thick hair, you might need to use 2 sachets each time. Though my hair is long, it’s fine in texture.

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To use this, simply transfer a sachet’s content into a bowl and add just enough water to make it into a thick paste (or a level of consistency you personally like). The paste is a dark colored one. Apply it to your hair for 20 minutes (that’s the instruction on the packaging) and rinse off with water. I usually apply it for 40 mins. It’s herbal and putting it on for extra time won’t hurt. I don’t use shampoo while washing it off. Also, while applying it, part your hair section by section and apply it. This way you will cover your hair and scalp completely. Though the package suggests using it thrice a week, I been using it twice a week only. It has a light, natural smell that stays on lightly on the hair for a few hours.

I have completed one entire pack now (five applications). One of the main results I noticed after using this is that my hair is more black in color and has a glossy shine to it. Overall, I am in love with this and I am sure to check out the other hair care powders by Banjara’s.

Price : Rs. 90 (AED 5.07) for 100 gms.

I bought this from Navaratna Hypermarket, Moonnupeediga, Kerala. This product can be found in any leading supermarkets.

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Love,

Naz ♥

Review : Pond’s Silk Cream!

Hey guys!

I recently got to try Pond’s Silk cream, which is one of Pond’s latest creams. The cream contains silk extracts and that’s why it’s called Silk Cream. Frankly speaking, I am more of an Olay girl and not a Pond’s fan. Most of their day creams that I have tried have left my skin either looking oily or whitish tinted. That being said, I would like to reinstate the fact that I am a crazy huge fan of Pond’s Intensive Cell ReGEN™ Super Serum. It works like a dream & no other serum even comes close to it!.

Pond'sSilk1

Onto the review of the Silk cream, the first thing that attracted me to it was the fact that it said on the packaging that it delivers 24 hr moisture and is a light non-greasy formula. I am very much into non-greasy formulas, that leave the skin looking supple and youthful. Another thing that was it’s size. It’s comes in a small, cute & handy container that contains only 29 gms, which is perfect for a trial.

Pond'sSilk2

The cream has a medium consistency and is white in color. It gets readily absorbed into the skin. A little doesn’t go a long way in this cream’s case. You need a good scoop to get full coverage of your face & neck. This tub should last about 15 to 20 days, depending on your usage. It has a very pleasant smell that lingers on mildly on the skin for a short while.

This Pond’s day cream lives upto it’s promises. It delivers silky, smooth skin that is supple & youthful. It’s my first time being a fan of a Pond’s day cream. If you are already a fan of Pond’s or you would like to give a Pond’s cream a trial, I highly recommend the Silk cream. As for the 24 hr moisture claim, I didn’t test that part out. I did wear it for about 10 hours with nothing else on my skin and it still stayed the same – looking soft & nourished.

Price : Rs. 50 (AED 2.88!) for a tub containing 29 gms.

I bought it from Navaratna hypermarket, in Moonnupeediga, Kerala.

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Naz ♥

Review : Biotique Bio Wheat Germ Youthful Nourishing Night cream!

Hey guys,

Biotique is an Indian brand that I have been hearing about a lot, of late. Two of my friends, Praseena & Keerthi, both based in India have been highly recommending it to me. So, when couple of months ago I went to a mall in Kochi city, I specifically looked out for this brand. I found a whole stall completely dedicated to Biotique!. Man, it looked blissful. This is an Ayurvedic brand containing 100% botanical extracts and that’s what appealed the most to me. All products looked great with effective ingredients in it. I was really in need of a night cream, so I settled for their Bio Wheat Germ Youthful Nourishing night cream, which is made especially for Normal to Dry skin.

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Wheat Germ oil is a natural antioxidant with more Vitamin E than any other natural oil. I am always into antiaging products. The white colored cream is thick and has a bouncy feel to it. It gets absorbed really easily. It has the most amazing, calming and soothing scent. It’s wonderful to apply this on the face and go to sleep. It really is so blissful.

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It’s main ingredients are pure wheat germ, sunflower oil, almond oil, Vitamins A, B, C, D, E & extracts of carrot and galangal that helps moisturize & strengthen skin for a more vital, younger appearance. In the mornings, when I wake up, my skin definitely looks fresh & well cared for. It comes in a basic plastic container. Nothing great about that. It does have a protective lid inside that avoids any transfer of the product from the tub to the lid. I love it and I usually keep it on until the product gets over. The tub contains 50gms and since a little goes a long way, it will last quite a long while.

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Price : Rs 199 (AED 11.50) for a tub containing 50 gms. Only in India can you get a cream so wonderful for such a great price!

My first impression is that I am in love with this brand!. I highly recommend you try this product. Also, next time that I stop by a Biotique stall, am buying more of their products ♡. Thanks to my two friends who recommended it to me!.

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Naz ♥

My Lilash experience – Before / After pix!

Hey guys!

Long eyelashes are just something else!. They can instantly make your face more attractive. Lilash is a purified eyelash serum that helps one to achieve the lashes they have always desired!. Visit Lilash’s website : http://www.lilash.com/en-us/lilash/. In this post, I have included before and after pictures, so that you can see the difference for yourself. This is quite a picture heavy post since I wanted to take you along through my progress over the weeks..

The Lilash package arrived in the most fashionable box. Such a gorgeous packaging!.

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It contained a Lilash, a Librow (serum for bolder eyebrows) and a stunning compact mirror that bears Lilash’s brand logo ♡. I won’t be reviewing Librow since I am not on the lookout for bolder eyebrows. I like it the way it is.

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Check out how gorgeous and stylish this mirror is!

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Lilash comes in a very classy silver tube that is very similar to an eyeliner tube. The wand has a brown tip. The serum itself is transparent and slightly thick. It has a slight scent to it that reminds me of general cosmetic products. Inorder to use it, you have to apply it on your upper eyelid just like how you normally apply your eyeliner. It is to be applied once a day. I apply it at night, about 20 minutes before going to sleep.

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What Lilash does is that, it conditions and fortifies your lash follicles to help create the most beautiful eyelashes. It helps your eyelashes reach their best potential length. This product is safe for sensitive eyes too.

Now on to the pix!.

Week 1, the day I started

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Without mascara

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With mascara

Week 5

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Without mascara

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With mascara

Week 9

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Without mascara

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With mascara

Week 11

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Without mascara

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With mascara and eyeliner

Week 12

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Without mascara

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With mascara

Week 13

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Without mascara

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With mascara

Week 14

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Without mascara

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Without mascara!

As you can see, over 3 months period of time, my lashes have become longer, curlier and darker!. I am absolutely loving it. It started getting curlier around Week 7. I have received compliments from many after batting my newly acquired eyelashes at them 😛 . Some who hadn’t seen me in a while, couldn’t really understand what the difference was with me, but just said ” Something has changed. You look prettier”. My mom though, noticed it around Week 6 and asked me what I am doing to have such a difference.

I didn’t have any side effects whatsoever while using Lilash. I highly recommend it to anyone who desires long eyelashes. Also, once it went in my eye but it didn’t irritate my eyes at all. It just felt cool to touch, that’s all. Lilash ships worldwide, to selected countries. Head over to their website and place a bottle in your cart to see if your country is among those countries they ship to.

The bottle that I have is called Lilash Demi. It has 2.95ml & costs $79.99 (AED 293.82). It lasts about 3.5 months, even though you use it once daily!. It’s available in a bigger bottle called Lilash Original. It contains 5.91ml & costs $139.97 (AED 514.13).

Take advantage of Lilash’s current Mother’s Day offer!

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What do you think of this product?. Have you tried it?. Let me know in the comments below =)

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Naz ♥

Note: I was sent this product from US for review purpose. All opinions are 100% my own.