Beauty Fixes

Olay Total Effects- A Review

I was never high on using regular creams, forget anti-aging ones. So, when I got an opportunity to try one, what better than Olay Total Effects, I was game for it. I received a sample of Olay Total Effects- 7 in 1 Anti-Aging Cream+Serum Duo. I have earlier tried the Olay Total Effects moisturiser, but it made my skin a little greasy. I have a normal skin tone but the greasiness made me drop the product. So, I was hoping this one would click.

Olay Total Effects

The 20gm cute dispenser like bottle is easy to carry along while travelling and very convenient to use. It also has a SPF of 15 which is enough for a moisturiser.

What it claims:

Olay Total Effects claims to fight the 7 signs of aging namely‚ÄĒ the look of fine lines and wrinkles, rough texture, the appearance of prominent pores and age spots, uneven skin tone, surface dullness, and dryness.

I used it for a few days and the immediate effect I could see was that my skin was visibly smoother. The cream+serum is quite moisturising,to the effect that my skin felt a little greasy. I cannot say much about the pores and age spots claim, as I don’t have them yet, thankfully! ūüôā


Rs 369 for 20gm

Overall, I am quite okay with this product during winters as the moisturising effect will work wonders then. But i am not quite sure about using it in the scorching summers. All in all, a good one from Olay.


Uncategorized · What i like

Reliance Digital- A delightful experience

Thanks to Indiblogger, I have finally come out of my rut. As every blogger would agree, starting a blog is easy but maintaining one is tough! I have learned the hard way. Nevertheless, this particular contest on Indiblogger forced me out of my house, all the way to the Reliance Digital store in Mulund. Reliance Digital is the consumer electronics arm of Reliance Retail Ltd. Although I had been there before, I wasn’t sure how and what I would write about my experience at electronic shopping. So i decided to check in at the store some time in the noon.

I was directed to a small group of bloggers who had come in earlier already and in a discussion with Mr Kapil from Reliance Digital. I joined the introductory session. Image

The Reliance Digital in Mulund is fairly huge with all sorts of electronic gadgets and appliances neatly stacked and segregated for an easy shopping experience. Mr Kapil took us through each section, with detailed explanation about the products. He was very patient throughout the session and answered every single query thrown by the fellow bloggers.

We were introduced to the various sections in the store which housed LED TVs, household appliances, laptops and mobile phones, head sets, home music theater systems from all major brands.

Mr Kapil showcasing the LED TVs

Reliance Digital also helps you assess the kind of TV one should select for their house, with labelled markings on the floor with proper viewing distances. All major brands were available here. Some of them even had attractive offers. Then we were taken to other sections which stationed laptops, DSLR cameras, personal grooming appliances, music systems, gaming zone etc.

The well showcased DSLR kiosk had all the required information for you to help with selecting the best one. The best part about shopping at Reliance Digital is the detailing done for all the products, along with offers and EMI schemes wherever applicable. Mr. Kapil proudly spoke about how Reliance has been aggressive in its approach and has managed to open up 500 stores in just 2 years. He also mentioned that customer service is one of their prime differentiators when compared to other competitors in the market.

And to prove his point, he took us to the customer care centre which takes care of all the customer queries and complaints.¬† ImageThe CRM kiosk attends to regular queries from the customer thus emphasizing on customer service, their motto being ‘Grahak Devo Bhava’. I was glad to hear this because customer service is one area where all the major retail outlets need to focus.

Next we were taken to the home theater engagement zone.It was a glass enclosure along with seating arrangements for one to test the system before¬†buying.¬†Ms Swati from Reliance Digital explained in detail about Reliance’s in house brand named Reconnect, powered by sound specialists Harman Kardon.

Engagement Zone

Ms Swati also showed us how Reliance has adopted the MPOS (Mobile Point Of Sale) system for easy billing, across all the stores. An iPhone, with a customized software developed by an IT major, allows one to swipe his card on the phone thus alleviating the trouble of long billing queues. This once again reiterates that they strongly believe in the saying ‘Customer Is King”.

All in all, it was a wonderful experience, as I got to know a lot about their process. Both the Reliance Digital representatives did a wonderful job of taking us through the entire process patiently. Looks like they have everything going for them and Reliance Digital was absolutely a delightful experience.

New beginning

Why do i love ‘Freshly Pressed?’

I am a lousy blogger, ¬†I admit! I mean, would you even call me one? Lately, i have been hit by the biggest and the strongest writer’s block (i love that term!)one could ever imagine!! I still remember the day when I started this blog, all enthusiastic and overjoyed, like a 5-year-old kid. My heart would flutter on seeing ¬†WordPress notifications in my inbox…Yay!! a new comment awaiting my attention!!!¬† It ¬†still does, by the way! And that is why i still cannot completely ignore my fledgling blog..I login everyday religiously, thinking of writing something which will inspire or confuse or encourage or simply amuse my reader. But alas, now a days , I have turned into a reader more than a blogger.

Freshly Pressed,eh?
Freshly Pressed,eh?

Yup, the ‘Freshly Pressed’ section ¬†gives me plenty of reasons to deviate from the task ¬† of ‘writing’ a new post and infusing some life into my blog! Firstly, its like the Academy Awards sponsored by¬†WordPress! I am sure every WP blogger, including myself, would love to see their posts getting featured here. Now, that is one helluva motivating¬†reason to write, and to write well!!¬† So most of the times, I find myself reading through the innumerable blogs getting featured on FP. I am almost overwhelmed with choices, to pick one from the¬†entire lot of articles, to begin with. I scour for catchy headlines, but then end up reading every article.

It’s almost like a mini library in itself . Most of the times, i find myself rummaging through the archives to while away my time. I do not have to take out time to go to the library¬†nor do i have to stick with a 500 page novel for weeks! Quick and simple!¬†I would have liked an archives section somewhere on FP ! (hear me , WP guys?or did i miss it?) It would have made my life easier but, this is great too. It also helps me save my time in looking for new blogs or interesting topics and I love the eclectic mix of topics, some serious, ¬†some funny, some very pretty to look at (courtesy food blogs) and some ‘how to get FPed’ tutorial posts! The whole idea behind getting obsessed with FP was¬†that¬†at least¬†I would get inspired sometime mid way, get off my couch and start writing. And voil√†! it happened! ¬†Good riddance, writer’s block!¬†ūüôā


I had to share this piece! Enjoy!

Pretty Feet, Pop Toe

I haven’t done much in the past week to generate much inspirational hatred or annoyance and so my scathing humour is offering up little in the way of wryly observed witterings based on the cretins I’ve met. Fear not for I still have plenty to say about life in general, only this week I’m not aiming to make you laugh, I’m aiming to impart some sage advice on a subject I usually avoid like a plague ridden crack den; Love, or more specifically, that which happens when love goes wrong. Heartbreak.

Every one of us spends our every waking moment (and a few sleeping ones) hoping to find and hold on to never-ending love. We are programmed to crave it like Pavlov’s dog craves a spittoon and so it never occurs to us that actually, the opposite of love may be something desirable and beneficial to us in the long…

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Real deal · What i like

Can you speak your mother tongue?

kolaveri di dhanush Heard the latest rage on the web ‘Kolaveri Di’? What is the most endearing thing¬†about a guy who can barely sing, crooning into a microphone, in the most¬†ridiculous¬†way? The best thing about the guy is that he is being himself. In an era where people are ashamed to refer to their ethnicity, here comes a guy who croons a different tune. No anglicized rap, mind you! Its pure old Tamil + English, now famously known as Tanglish.

I adore this guy for the fact that he gives a I care a damn attitude. There are scores of people, especially among the South Indian community who refuse to acknowledge the fact that they are South Indians!! They prefer to talk in English over their mother tongue and may even indulge in cheap name calling a Madrasi guy, just to look cool. This comes from my personal experience where I have come across people especially from South India. They proudly accept the fact that they do not know their mother tongue and are not very keen to learn it. But they are dying to learn a  foreign language. How ironical!!

May be they are ashamed of being¬†labelled¬†a ‘Madrasi’ which is again a moniker for the entire South Indian community. But why? I fail to understand the whole idea behind this. And the very same people¬†wouldn’t¬†mind having ‘Kolaveri Di’ on their playlist! Then there are fake accents and attitudes to deal with too, but¬†that’s¬†a different ball game altogether. I hate it when people tell me that ‘we eat, sleep and think in English first’, huh!! Really? Since when did English become our first language so much so that even our songs are filled with crappy English lyrics!

Today’s¬†generation is a confused lot. They hate to speak their own language but¬†wouldn’t¬†mind wolfing down a idli dosa. They hate all the customs and traditions, yet¬†wouldn’t¬†mind going hungry for a day to please the gods. And i am not targetting the younger lot of today. I have seen the older generation do the same thing. People who have been brought up on morning prayers and devotional songs sung by M S Subbulakshmi now find it boring. Everyone must respect their mother tongue because it is the foundation of one’s culture and moral values.

You may love it or hate it, but the Kolaveri fever has definitely caught on! For a change, Tanglish sounds way stylish and entertaining than propah English.

What i like

Let’s take a detour

I love to reminisce my good old school days when everything used to be so uncomplicated.  Quality ruled over quantity, as opposed to what the situation is today. The tv shows were so much fun then, some of which we could definitely relate to. My top picks from an era gone by are(in no particular order):

old sitcoms, tv showsold tv shows¬† It was a perfect mix of family values sprinkled with humor, love, inspiration and at times emotions too. I miss coming home to Jeannie and her master, or the FRIENDS going about their usual antics, and the menace named Dennis. I was a big fan of ¬†I dream of Jeannie. The¬†master was cute ;). I also watched Who’s The Boss?, Mad About You, Silver Spoons, Wonder Years, Happy Days and so on…Gosh! The only Hindi serial which i ever got to see was Dekh Bhai Dekh. It was hilarious and was a major hit, back then. I know I might have missed a lot of names here, so do let me know what are your faves…

New beginning

A ‘driving’ experience

How I envy “with green eyes” those who flick out their keys and turn on the ignition of a four wheeler with relative ease!!! Long back i¬†harbored¬†a simple dream, to drive a four wheeler on my own. And it still remains a dream though! ūüė¶ I have had a fascination for cars for as long as i can remember. And i was proud of the fact that i knew more about cars than any of my female friends.

Driving a car During my college days, I finally decided to take up driving lessons. I still remember my first driving instructor, an old chap, chewing betel nut  and red drool flowing out of his mouth. All i wanted to do was, run out of the car and get some fresh air. And somehow i managed to complete my training and got hold of my license.

Since i was in college, i never got a chance to drive on my own. Now that I have a car at home, I tried to put my skills to test. So ‘the husband’ decided to take me on a test drive and put me through maximum embarrassment. I chose a lonely road so that I dont end up knocking down people the very first day! ‘The husband’ very graciously let me take to the wheel, although i was very sure he must be praying from within. I have to admit he loves his gadgets more than me. I was all tensed as i put the key in and tried to start the car.

Suddenly I blanked out. ‘The husband’ decided to take a verbal test before i got on the road. He asked me what I am gonna do once I start the car. And lo, everything flew out of my head right out of the window. I struggled with the clutch, the gears and every damn thing. He declared that I am totally ignorant and he went on to teach me a few things. After a lot of yelling and drama, I began my trip only to realize that the road had a few downward as well as upward slopes. I got all stuck up and i could see a monstrous BEST bus right behind me honking and screaming its guts out! I had a panic attack and ‘the husband’ had to rescue me from the wrath of the driver.

A few more yellings and i decided that i couldn’t drive. But that hasn’t deterred me from taking up driving. I braved all the screaming from ‘the husband’ and¬† a few more sessions later, I gathered the courage to drive but still haven’t ventured out into the wild, crazy traffic of Mumbai. Of course, there were many funny moments like the time when I was driving down a slope and when i reached the main road, I was left wondering why my car has stopped suddenly, only to realize that all this while it was acting at the behest of gravity and I hadn’t turned on the ignition!! How ridiculously hilarious!!

At times, I would forget to take off the hand brake or I would just simply forget to look at the rear mirror. I very rarely realized that there was a side mirror on my car and I am supposed to be very alert while driving. I always used to wonder why ‘the husband’ never talks while driving. I attributed it to the fact that men aren’t good at multi tasking until i myself figured it out that its best to shut up and concentrate on the road because in Mumbai, you never know what lands up in front of you. Suddenly a man would come out of the bushes and jump in front of your car, school going kids decide to take a leisure walk, on the main road, mind you. If nothing comes up, you always have the potholes to be careful of!!But it was fun and I am looking forward to another session of driving some time soon. Wish me luck! ūüôā

What are your first time driving memories?

Beauty Fixes

Changing Faces Of Nivea

How i adored those little round blue tins of ‘snow’ as it was called in those days!! In the earlier days i.e the 90s, the round blue tins of Nivea used to be the answer for anything under the sun!!Every indian household used to boast of these miracle creams, which were mostly gifted by uncles who came from the Gulf land.

Nivea has evolved since then and has forayed into products for men and women like deodorants, range of whitening products, anti-aging, facewash, lip care and under-eye care.The blue tin however wasnt always blue. Lets take a look at the evolution of our favorite product:

Nivea Creme over the yearssource: afaqs

The simple logo, a mix of plain and cursive letters embossed on the lid, was enough to captivate the entire world. No marketing gimmicks and branding efforts required here. The German product Nivea is based on trust, care and quality and is  celebrating its 100th birthday with a bang this year.

Nivea as it is today:

Nivea productsLook at the way how Nivea has evolved with the changing trends. And i am sure no one is complaining. I still remember how the tin would be reused for small knick knacks with the faint fragrance of the creme still lingering on.  I am a stickler for body lotions and love to indulge in cosmetics which come in fancy bottles and prepped up wrappings. However Nivea fascinates me with its blue colored tin sans the prep ups. Strange!

So here’s wishing the humble cold cream, many more beautiful years in future!!

New beginning · Real deal

Green Alert In Mumbai

¬†Last week after my usual shopping at one of the leading grocery /departmental stores, the guy at the counter held out a Say no to plasticplacard in front of me. It said ‘ Go green- Say no to plastic’. On my prodding, he carelessly announced that next time I come for shopping, I must get my own bags. I was pleasantly surprised and shocked that the¬† the government has issued a strict order to ban plastic bags and hence they wouldn’t be providing any, from now on.

On further probing, he took out a cloth bag, which was being sold for Rs 25. He meant that I could buy it in case i do not wish to get my bag. But still i could see the plastic bags on the counter beside him , although the huge ones were missing. Then he asked me “Madam, which ones- Rs 2 , Rs 3 or Rs 6?” I was flabbergasted and was trying to figure out what this chap was blabbering. First, the guys at the counters are not a very friendly lot. They just continue to stare at the computers even if a customer is trying to reason with him about the bill and it annoys me no end. Surprisingly, he took the pains of explaining it to me that different plastic bags of varied sizes were available but i would have to shell out the price mentioned above. Huh!!!

Now, the bags were small and couldn’t hold a months’ ration! This is a very clever initiative of earning money because obviously no one could ever stuff their buyings into a single polythene bag, thus you end up buying more bags.¬† What they could have done was at least give the large bags so that the number of bags could have been reduced.Plus, the practice of segregating the food items from the detergent doesn’t help in any way. What is the point in carrying ten bags when items can be accommodated in a single bag! I heard people in the queue grumbling about how this is a perfect ploy to earn more money and loot the middle class crowd. No one seemed happy that there would be less plastic choking our gutters … Sigh!

I was puzzled because in no way, are we eliminating the cause of pollution. Instead this has encouraged people to shell out money and thus end up feeding our store owner.¬† If a person shops for say Rs 5000, would he mind shelling out an extra 10 buck for plastic bags? No way, he wouldn’t because he thinks about the comfort factor rather than bringing huge cloth bags with him, every time he shops. The government must realize that people are ready to pay money and this is in no way a deterrent to end the plastic menace. I still remember, when there were no flashy malls with huge grocery stores,¬† my mom used to go to the local kirana wala¬† and place her request. The kiranawala would deliver the grocery at my doorstep but in a big cloth bag and leave. May be its time to go back to my old kiranawala guy and let go of the shopping malls which promote this crap! I hope the government wakes up before we are buried under this mess.

As someone rightly said- Modernization should not pave way for misery.

Real deal · Routine stuff

Walking in the rains…

I know, I know Mumbai rains are to die for! Everyone gushes about the lovely weather Mumbaiites get to enjoy during the monsoon. It is a huge respite from the sweltering heat and everyone looks forward to it with great pleasure. But things are changing and it is never like it used to be. The very fact that the infrastructure in Mumbai is falling apart doesn’t help the Mumbaikar in a great way. I have never found the rains, especially in Mumbai, to be an ear shrieking, jumping -with-joy affair. Definitely not after being stuck up in one of the biggest floods some years back. This is definitely not how I envision the rainy season: Walking in the rains

 This happens only in the movies!

All I can think of is this:


When I was a kid, I hated the umbrella because it never served the purpose. I would trundle to school with a mighty umbrella so that I do not get drenched. The queue system in school ensured that the kids learn how to behave and wait patiently till the bell rings. However, the kid behind me would make sure that the raindrops trailing off his / her umbrella dripped right on to my head or my uniform’s sleeve. A fight would ensue and everyone tried their best to avoid each other’s umbrella. How I hated that!! Sitting all drenched in the classroom with four or five students packed on a bench was never fun. Ugh!

The uber cool rain boots (sigh) were even more pathetic. First, there were not much of color choices and designs to choose from like the ones we have today. There used to be solid colors like black or pink and I preferred black, don’t know why. The boots were high enough to make sure that my tiny nubile feet stay protected from the muddy waters. But alas, this never lasted for long.  The rains would fall in every angular direction and thus gain entry into my precious boots and I would cringe. The funny sound it made would guarantee giggles as soon as I entered the classroom. Not very lovely memories of the rain…

As time passed by, I got better equipped to tackle the rains. Travelling by local trains during the monsoon is no small feat. The worst part would be to stand still, patiently, in the crowded trains while getting doused with holy rain water or getting hit in the guts with a phoren-made umbrella. Young college girls with long ferrule umbrellas resembling walking sticks don’t make life easier. And the never-ending fights in the famed Mumbai locals add spice to the damp weather.

But sometimes I do feel like walking in the rains when the weather looks pleasant. I have tried that, really, only to be doused by muddy waters from passing vehicles. The large potholes on the roads filled with yuck do not fit well in the romantic monsoon scene. The gait which I adopt during the rains resembles a child walking on a tight rope. I have heard of so many incidents where people have fallen into open manholes because someone stole the manhole covers for hard cash…Oops! So much for walking in the rains.

Apart from the occasional waterfalls, treks and hikes which people love to go for, there is nothing awe striking about the rains in Mumbai. The hardships which one has to deal with almost wipes off any pleasure the rain has to offer.  I know many of us really love the monsoon and eagerly await this part of the year. We Mumbaiites are blessed with ample rainfall and should definitely make the best of it, but pray, tell me, can I ever get the pleasure of walking in the rain, without a hoot to care about…