Sunday, 30 March 2014

Product Review | My Current Cleanser Trio….

Hi Peeps, 

For the most part, I stick to the products in my skincare regimen but cleansers are one thing I like to experiment with. My obsession with cleansers is due to the fact that they are the foundation of any regimen. Like i tell most people, 80% of skin problems can be cured by simply cleansing properly and with the right products. 

There is so much cleansing goodness out there that I feel like I would be missing out if I only stick to one. Maybe one day I will find my holy grail cleanser but till then, I will keep running down the aisles of beauty stores looking for a cleanser to try out. Here is my current power cleanser trio! 

Bioderma Sensibio H20, Nuetrogena Visibly Clear 2 in 1, Olay pore minimizing cleanser + scrub

Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micelle Solution

This cleanser has been HOT in the beauty space for a while now- I'm talking shelves have been cleared out the moment they are stocked with Sensibio H2O. I was not disappointed when I bought this product and tried it out. You can tell how much I love it seeing as it is currently way past half -_-. 

Bioderma is a French laboratory that works very closely with dermatologists to develop skincare products for their use to treat their patients' skin problems. They aim to cater to all types of skin, even the really sensitive kind.

The Sensibio H20 is very mild and this is what I love about it. Being fragrance and alcohol-free means that it is suitable for really sensitive skin. One rule of thumb I have learnt about looking for cleansers is to always look out for the world "gentle" or "mild", those are the best ones. So please if you are currently using any cleanser that burns and/or dries up your skin badly- into the bin it goes :)

I use it every night with a cotton pad and it gets all my makeup off without leaving my face feeling stripped. It really feels like water without the harshness of water. There is zero sting even around my eyes yet it works so well- magic water if you ask me. My skin really likes this stuff and has seen an improvement since I started using it so guess who is stocking up on these?  

The problem with most Bioderma products including this cleanser though is that it is not very easy to find outside of France, to say nothing about Nigeria! But if you are in the UK or know someone heading down here from there, you can get two 500ml bottles for around £20 here

Neutrogena Visbly Clean 2-in-1 Wash and Mask

If you read this blog often, you would know that Neutrogena is a brand that is very close to my heart. Pocket friendly products that are bad-ass! I have always used the regular daily cleanser but I decided to give this two-in-one wash/mask a try because really, whats better than a dual function product? 

This face wash works really well- gentle on the skin yet so effective. I use it on alternate mornings in the shower and it leaves my face feeling very clean and refreshed. There's a minty smell and feel to this product  that I really like, it gives the feeling of a real deep-cleanse.

Once a week, I use it as a mask and it works really great too. I usually leave it on for about 15 mins before rinsing off and my face feels super clean. I think I will be sticking to this two in one for a while as opposed to juggling a cleanser and a mask.

It costs around N2000 and I got mine at Ebeano supermarket's beauty section. You can also find it in Med-Plus, Health-Plus, Casabella or online here...

 Olay Pore Minimizing Cleanser + Scrub

Two things attracted me to this cleanser- the fact that it's another two in one product and the claim that it is "pore-minimzing". If you are cursed blessed with large pores, then you know my struggle sister! So I just had to give this a try, along with the many, many pore minimizing products I have tried over the years, sigh…

This cleanser has something the other two can't boast of- microbeads. I loooveee microbeads in everything, cleansers, body scrubs even lotion! It's such a shame that Jergens stopped making their skin smoothing lotion with beads but thats a rant for another day.

The good thing about microbeads is that they really get all the impurities out of your skin by exfoliation.   The microbeads in this product though are small so they are much gentler on the skin whilst giving it a good cleanse/scrub. What I really love about this cleanser though is the smell- it smells of nature which makes me imagine that I'm taking a shower standing on rocks, under a waterfall, on a small island… (I'm not crazy I promise). With regards to it's pore minimizing ability, I will say that my pores do look slightly smaller but nothing earth shattering. I will continue to use it to see if these pores can get any smaller- I shall not stop until these pores become invisible to the human eye!

I also bought it from Ebeano supermarket but I can't remember exactly how much now, it was probably in the 2000s though.

So yeah, these are the three best cleansers in my stash now. I also love that because they are all so mild, none of them has caused any skin irritation for me. They have worked really well together to get my skin to the really happy place it is in right now.

What cleansers are your currently loving?

Peace and Love,


P.S- Can I just say how much I enjoyed typing this post? I have really missed blogging frequently..thank you to all of you lovely people that are still faithfuls :) ! 

Monday, 10 March 2014

Hair Care | Funmi's Hair Story

Funmi, She Loves The Finer Things' resident hair care guru is back and today she's sharing her hair story with you guys. You will see that she has come a verryyy long way. Enjoy! 

My Hair Story

Hiya peoples!

Hope we’ve all been good. Yes I know it’s been ages…please forgive my long hiatus.  Picking up from where I left off in my last post, I promised to upload before and after hair pictures. Seeing as that was a while ago, I have several “before and after” stories; so please sit back, relax and enjoy this picture-filled hair post.

    December 2012                                          August 2013

I became interested in healthy hair practices sometime around September 2012 through a friend of mine. She had very long and beautiful hair which I always admired but assumed I could never have; the stereotype of long hair being tied to hereditary and how certain people had good hair genes was fully etched in my brain. We however got to talking one day and imagine my surprise when she told me that she hadn’t always had long hair like this but had grown it out on her own. She started to tell me about extra virgin oil, argan oil, deep conditioning, and so on. By this point in time, my interest was fully piqued and I decided to carry out more research on all things hair. Thanks to the internet, I had access to all the information I needed; it was all right at my fingertips. My dear friend was also kind enough to send me some helpful links and you tube videos. I remember being so overwhelmed when I saw all the waist length pictures of full-on African girls who had grown their hair that way from almost nothing (ear length and shoulder length). I was amazed that this was actually possible and I knew it couldn’t be a hoax since I had read about several cases; it wasn’t just one person’s word. I was so enthusiastic at this point that the more I read, the more I wanted to know. Needless to say, I definitely suffered from information overload that night because I stayed up all through reading so many posts and watching videos. Armed with all the knowledge that I needed to begin, I went straight to Pak cosmetics online store and amazon and I literally bought any and everything I felt I would need; shampoos, conditioners, oils, you name it.

Three months from my purchase craze (December 2012), I officially began my Healthy Hair Journey (HHJ) and had my very first wash day (picture below). The state of my hair was so appalling! Looking back, I find it hard to believe that I was the one in the picture. I mean what was I thinking carrying around such scraggy looking split ends?? And they were so uneven and scanty that you can clearly see my white t shirt underneath the hair. Oh well, I had only myself to blame because instead of treating my hair, I hid it beneath different types of weaves. I have however been cured of this type of thinking, and went a whole year (yes I mean 365 days) without installing a weave once. How did I pull it off you ask? Please read on… 

December 2012

Since I was going to be leaving my hair out to give it all the tender loving care I had failed to give it for the past two decades and then some more, I decided to stretch my relaxers for just 8 weeks. I was still a newbie at this point and I didn't want to be over ambitious and carry out any long stretches that would hinder my HHJ.  So the cycle began;  I washed my hair every week, clarified once a month, had regular protein treatments and deep conditioning sessions, and I made sure to pre-poo overnight before  every wash. I waited exactly 8 weeks and come February 2013, I carried out my first self-relaxing session (please read up well on how to relax hair yourself before attempting this at home). 

During my research, I had learnt about texlaxing as against relaxing (Jen of Just Grow Already was a big and welcome influence in this area). Basically it means deliberately under processing your hair to retain more volume. Relaxers are made to chemically break down the protein bonds in our hair shafts which result in smooth silky hair at the end of the process. While this look suits some people, I decided that I didn’t just want flat silky relaxed hair but I wanted thick, full hair with more volume and body. I have fine hair strands, which means that my hair is very soft and light and a full relaxed hair would leave my hair looking lifeless. You can under process your hair by shortening the amount of time you leave the relaxer on your head, adding oils or conditioners to your relaxer to reduce its potency or using a mild relaxer that will not over relax but just straightens out your hair (more like a texturiser would do). I decided to take the easy route and use a mild relaxer, African pride’s Olive miracle anti-breakage no-lye relaxer for kids. This was the result…

February 2013

I saw this improvement in my hair and I was definitely wowed. I was also happy because it meant that my efforts and hard spent cash were paying off! But I was still not satisfied. Yes my hair had grown about 2 and a half inches in just 2 months. Typically, the average growth cycle is half an inch every month which means I should have experienced just about an inch of growth is those two months.  I honestly don’t know why my hair grew that fast initially, I think my hair just went into overdrive because of the many years it had been starved and not properly nourished, lol. However you will see that it was just a one-time thing and I have since not experienced this type of abnormal growth since then.

Now back to my unsatisfaction; as you can see from the above picture I still had the dreaded split ends and my ends were still uneven. The middle part of my hair was much shorter than the left and right hand sides. So I cut off about 2 inches till my ends were even. I was initially reluctant to let go off my new found length, but I knew it was for the better since I was aiming for not just length but also health of my hair. After cutting my hair, I repeated my 8 week cycle again and relaxed my hair in April.

After carrying out 2 successful 8-week stretches, I grew more confident in my ability to manage my hair for longer periods and decided to do a 16-week stretch the next time. I couldn't leave my hair out for 4 months without causing breakage so I started wearing wigs and weaving my hair underneath to protect it. I invested in different styles of wigs depending on my mood and it worked and still works for me. Gone are the days when wigs were seen as being for old women, wigs are here to stay people! Another good side to it is that you can custom make your wigs by making use of your previously owned weaves, so converting your human hair weave into a wig will achieve the same look while giving you easy access to your hair. I have since become completely sold on wigs and am a serious advocate for the cause. Some salons offer these services, and you can also check out these hair bloggers who do so as well: Lade of Rehairducation ( and Ifeyinwa of Loveifeyinwa ( The picture below shows my hair after I relaxed in April and then four months after in August.

April 2013                                August 2013

I am happy with the progress I have made so far, and I am more inspired than ever to keep pushing on because my journey is just starting.  I know I still have a long way to go till I get to a length that I am satisfied, but I guess that’s why it is called a journey. Since I began, my hair is looking much healthier, fuller and thicker and with less ugly looking ends. There’s only one way from here and that is UP! There will definitely be some setbacks along the way but it helps because you learn from them and also learn what not to do next time. 

For my hair pictures in December 2013 (a story on how a scissors happy stylist cut off a good 2 inches!) and my next relaxer session in April, please watch out for part 2 of this post. Hope you not only enjoyed reading it but you were also motivated to go crazy on all things hair and start your HHJ today. You will not regret it, and your hair can only get better so why delay? Don’t be left behind people, join the hair revolution. Say no to ridiculously priced weaves and yes to luscious silky hair that belongs to you and only you. Okay enough of my rallying and motivational chants, bye for now. 

If you are interested in making your own length check t shirt to help you track your hair progress, check out Dabs’ article here on Naija hair can grow blog, that’s where I learnt to make mine along with many other useful tips.

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