Big Hair, Do Care: The Best Volumizing Products for Flat, Lifeless Hair

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After some serious root-boosting, spraying & blow-drying efforts, this is what can be achieved with PS & PL Hair that wakes up looking like helmet hair, I promise.

If, like me, you were born with PS & PL (Poker Straight & Pretty Lifeless) Hair, I am safely assuming that obtaining the right amount of volume is or has been a pretty up-there #hairgoal and probably a weekly, if not daily, battle. Girls with naturally bouncy, frizzy, wavy or coarse hair will never understand, bless their cotton socks. Why? Because any waves, curls, frizzy bits or bends can be magically GHD’d away in about half an hour (unless of course your mane resembles Monica’s in that Friends episode in the Bahamas), but getting volume into poker straight & pretty lifeless hair takes a different kind of will power: #thestruggleisreal, people.

So, having tried and tested an insane number of volumizing mousses, sprays, root boosters & brushes over the years, I’m here to share my go-to products with you, to help make you look like #youwokeuplikethis:

  • Joico Glamtex Clare Wiese-Wentzel.jpgStructure Glamtex Backcomb Effect Spray | I was introduced to this spray by my trusty Lameez Barendse, who does THE most phenomenal, volumizing blow-dry (she can be found flexing her blow-dry sculpted biceps at HAIR on Kloofnek Road, if you live in Cape Town: 021-422-2269). This product is amazing to spritz onto roots after a blow-dry, for that extra bit of grit and root boosting, and it works wonders to revive second- or third-day hair on them lazy days. If you’re feeling courageous, combine this spray with some good old-fashioned backcombing. Yes – I know – I should have been born in the 80s. Oh well.

 

  • Kevin Murphy Powder Puff Volumising Powder | Another product that genuinely works to boost hair at the roots (which is obviously where volume is needed most, especially if your face, like mine, can lean towards the rounder side) is a little white powder in a little pink shaker can. This product that I have since become obsessed with (to put it mildly) was first introduced to me by my beloved Gilbert, also of ClareWieseWentzel.jpegHAIR in Kloofnek Road, and – yes  – I will be eternally grateful. It’s so easy to use and just so freaking effective: simply sprinkle some of this magic dust onto your scalp (after washing and drying hair), massage in to the roots and VOILA, it’s Dallas in a bottle! I started using this product on my hair for our new television show, MOOIMAAK, and – by the end of filming – the hair stylists and I became involved in some pretty hard-core negotiations and barter deals over what become known as “The Pink Powder” (I had the only supply on set).  If you live in Cape Town, call Gilbert (021-422-4469, HAIR on Kloofnek Road) to get your hands on this stuff. If you live anywhere else, reach out to your nearest Kevin Murphy stockist or buy from Amazon. Do it!

 

  • ClareWieseWentzelBlogThe Phyto Phytovolume Actif Volumising Spray, aka the Holy Grail of hair-volumizing products | I got to know this spray as a cult hair product featured ad nauseam in the “best beauty buy” pages of  magazines like InStyle and, when my skeptical self eventually decided to give it a go, it  – literally – blew my hair back (sorry, I just had to slip that in:) Unfortunately, this product cannot be bought in South Africa, but Amazon sells it and, believe me, it’s worth the mission. Spray onto wet roots before drying hair upside down (at least for the first few minutes).

 

There you go, ladies. Here’s to good (aka big and bouncy) hair days!

Love,

Clare.

 

Why You Need To Beautify Your Brows

YOUR BROW NEEDS TO WOW

I often get asked, “what are the key things a woman can do to instantly improve her appearance?” or “what are the best-kept beauty secrets?” As the creator & presenter of MOOIMAAK, a cutting-edge new television series which takes thirteen women on the makeover journey of a lifetime, I am – of course – expected to have at least some of the answers. No pressure then.Image result for gigi hadid brows

One of the things I always mention is the importance of having perfectly-shaped “Gigi H” brows. I always feel comfortable dispensing this piece of advice, as coloring and filling out my own brows is the very first thing I do every morning when putting my game face on. I won’t even go to the gym without my “game brows” (although, alas, I do go to the gym without a lot of other things, like my actual “game”, so…no judgment here;)

There is no doubt that brows that are the correct shape, width and tone can take years off your face, opening up your eyes and balancing the proportions of your bone structure. I was going to post some pics of my own history of brow-sasters here, to illustrate this point, but I really don’t want to put myself through that kind of cringe right now. As an added bonus, the incriminating evidence is nowhere near Facebook, so I am using the fact that I don’t have any dodgy pics at hand, as an additional excuse.

Luckily, I can post one of the incredible MOOIMAAK makeover photo sets hereunder,  to show you what a difference a good microbladed brow makes.  The show is still new and most of the “big reveals” are yet to be…well, revealed, so you’ll have to watch the series for the rest of the before & after‘s. (The show airs on kykNET every Thursday at 17h30 – if you live in SA, don’t miss it).

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Angelina & Gwen, hereunder, seem to agree that fuller, more natural-looking arches are the most modern and flattering style.

So, now, you might be wondering which are the most effective ways to achieve brow-fection. Here are some tips.

THE BEST BROW-SHAPING OPTIONS

Tweezing, threading & makeup

0000948_eyebrow-threading_300.jpegFor commitment-phobes and ladies with time on their hands, there is the option of getting your brows shaped by a professional brow shaper (yes, those people do exist), who will either pluck or thread the hairs into the best arch for your face, often requiring intermittent maintenance appointments to keep things tidy. I can’t personally vouch for them, but I’ve heard from a friend I trust implicitly that the therapists at Eye Candy Brows in Cape Town are fab. Once the basic shape has been defined, the correct makeup techniques need to be followed to enhance those areas that are thin, sparse or too light – filling, shading and coloring as you go.

Side note: I personally don’t believe in brow waxing, as the skin around your eyes is very delicate and waxing often thins the outer layers of the skin, thereby speeding up the aging process (and, come on, who needs that?).

Microblading

Now, for those of you who are brave and bad-ass enough to take the plunge into permanent brow perfection, microblading is your new best friend. This form of permanent (or, technically, semi-permanent) makeup has taken the global beauty world by storm, as it’s a relatively quick and safe way to make brows look full and perfectly shaped, without the hassle of having to apply makeup every morning.

It gives me great joy to introduce you to the “BROW QUEEN” of South Africa, Cape Town-based Lisl Boshoff of Powderpuff Permanent Makeup. Images of her work appear above. It was during the production of MOOIMAAK and after many hours of research and telephone calls to my trusty sources, that I discovered Lisl. After viewing (or rather pain-stakingly scrutinizing) Lisl’s Instagram feed, I asked her to join our team of MOOIMAAK experts.

As expected, each one of the 9 makeover candidates who received microblading by Lisl were beyond thrilled with their results and, having seen their brow transformations first-hand, I cannot recommend Lisl highly enough. It’s no wonder that she recently won the PCASA Award of Excellence for Workmanship and Achievements in the Industry.

Fast facts about microblading

  • What does microblading entail? Microblading is a form of tattooing where a special permanent make-up machine or hand tool is used to implant pigments into the upper dermis layer of the skin by means of individually packed disposable safety needles.
  • Is it painful? Topical anaesthetic creams and special permanent make-up anaesthetic gels are used to numb the skin, so most people find it a little uncomfortable but never painful.
  • How long does it take? The first application takes 2 hours with one shorter touch-up application recommended 6-8 weeks later, to perfect the shape and colour.
  • How long does it last? Because permanent makeup can fade over time, maintenance visits can be scheduled every few years to keep your colour looking fresh.

Lisl offers free consultations to show you what shape and colour she would recommend for your face. Contact her on +27 (0)82 466 2429 or email her at hello@powderpuffmakeup.co.za.

For more info, visit Powderpuff’s website, check out their Facebook page or grab a flat white and scroll through their highly addictive before & after Instagram feed @lislboshoff1.

Here’s to beautiful brows!

Love,

Clare.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 5 Habits of My Highly Effective Husband

Screen Shot 2017-05-03 at 15.00.34.pngOn 22 April 2017, it was exactly one year since the rainy, stormy, magical day on which I said “I do” in the Stellenbosch Moederkerk to my six-foot-seven other half.

So, I thought it fitting to publish a post in honour of the man himself. He surely deserves it, if for no other reason than simply having put up with me for the last twelve months, without (visible) recourse to the odd Schedule 5 sedative. Also, as an added bonus, the first wedding anniversary gift is traditionally “paper”, and, seeing as this blog is pretty much my online diary, I reckon it all ties in pretty nicely. (Don’t worry, this is not his anniversary gift. I’m not that much of a chancer!)

On a serious note, as I sit here writing this, I am deeply grateful that the man I married is someone I constantly look up to, not only because of the dreamy six-foot-seven-ness. I have learned a huge amount from The Planet (I’ll have to explain this nickname some other time and, no, it’s not what you think). So, I wanted to share some of my favourite lessons here. I’m limiting it to 5 (because, well, I am running late and behind, as usual) and, as luck would have it, Marco’s rugby jersey number was always number 5 (lock position).

1. The rewards of making a plan & sticking to it

umbra-take-5“Failing to plan is planning to fail”. While this is obviously not an original Marco Wentzel concept, it’s something I’ve seen him put into practice every day, without fail. Let’s just say, the man is decisive about being decisive and disciplined about being disciplined. Quite frankly, I’ve never seen anything quite like it. Whether it’s due to 17 years of playing professional rugby or an innate “maybe he’s born with it” ability, I do tip my hat in his general direction when it comes to his ability to “make a plan and stick to it”.

While he goes to bed at the same time each night and gets up (refreshed) every morning at 5am to start each day with an hour at the gym, I’m still floating around in dreamland only to hit the “snooze” button repeatedly two hours later, whilst struggling to find The Perfect Excuse for bunking gym (yet again). I mean who, in today’s world, wakes up feeling “refreshed” of “well-rested”? Planet replies to all emails within 24 hours or sooner, whilst I have 395 unread mails in my inbox on a good day, mostly because “I have too much on my plate and I’ll get to it later”. The Husband doesn’t work this way – he makes a plan to get to it and then does so. (And his plate is way, waaaay, fuller than mine.)

Absa Currie Cup: Cell C Sharks training session and press conference

Many people are planners: they have big dreams of what they want to achieve, but somehow never get around to making these dreams come true. Others are simply doers, impulsively jumping into new projects, without ever taking the time to devise a proper plan. Marco has shown me that not only it is possible to be a planner and an executor, but it is a highly rewarding skill set worth pursuing, resulting in less stress, higher productivity and, ultimately, a less chaotic life.

2. You have to look after yourself before you can look after others

This heading can’t help but remind me of that safety speech flight attendants always give, prior to takeoff: something about “during an in-flight emergency, make sure you secure your own oxygen mask first, before helping your children or those around you.”

I have lost count of how many times in my life I have reached out to help friends in need,  taken on charity cases or familial issues, when – in fact – I was barely struggling to manage my own responsibilities. Whilst it’s all good and well (and, I believe, our moral obligation) to help those in need, the math is simple: if our tank is empty, we’re not going to get very far carrying others. If the lifeboat isn’t inflated properly, everyone in it is going to drown. If you have a big heart and find tremendous joy in helping others where you can, it’s not easy to say “no” when being asked a favour, but it is sometimes necessary and in everybody’s best interest to try to help others only when you have the capacity to do so.

3. There is only space for so many marbles on your board

ClareWieseBlogPostThe day only has twenty-four hours in it. A week only has seven days. It’s impossible to be everything, to everyone, all of the time.

Marco always says that we all have space for a “limited about of marbles” on our board (although, quite frankly, I think I’ve lost a few along the way, but that’s besides the point). He says: “every time a new marble comes onto your board, another one has to make way”.  Whether it be relationships, friendships, career projects or other personal endeavours, at some point you’ll need to decide which marbles deserve to be on your board and which ones have to roll off.

When I complain (to the poor man) about not having enough time to finish my ever-expanding to-do list, see all my friends, reply to all my Whatsapp messages or answer all my emails (you can tell by now I have a major email problem), he will simply say: “you’re trying to make space for too many marbles on your board and there just isn’t space. So, decide which marbles you want to keep and let the rest roll away.”

This lesson is really about the need for prioritising those aspects of your life that are, at any particular point in time, MOST important to you (whether it be building a business from the ground up, bettering your relationship with your mother, supporting a friend through a messy divorce or getting your body back in shape after giving birth). On the flip side, it’s also about letting go of those things (or those people) who, at the end of the day, simply aren’t as important as the rest. You only have space for so many marbles! I’m still working on this one, but the lesson is there:)

4. Change the changeables

This one is simple (to Marco, at least, it seems). Again, I’m still working on it. There are things in life we can change and things we can’t. We can’t change people’s prejudices or preconceptions, we can’t change how we were brought up, we can’t change the cards we were dealt at birth. On the other hand, we can change so many, powerful, things: one of which is the way we respond to that which happens to us or the way in which we play our cards.

Whenever Marco catches me worrying about something (which, unfortunately, is often, as I seem to really enjoy worrying), he’ll say, quite pragmatically: “You can’t change it. Let it go. Change the changeables”. There is a lot of freedom in accepting the things we cannot change (whatever they may be) and shifting our focus towards the things we can. I actually wrote a piece on self-acceptance vs self-improvement recently, which ties into this very liberating philosophy.

Absa Currie Cup: Cell C Sharks training session

5. Keep your eye on the prize

Last, but not least, Planet refuses to get sucked in to trivial power battles or stand-offs in business, relationships or life. He always keeps his eye on the ball (cheesy rugby pun and well-placed photograph intended) and his focus always remains on his long-term goals.

It’s so easy to get derailed or side-tracked, when we encounter difficult people or circumstances along the way to fulfilling our dreams, but if we spend all our time worrying about every high tackle (an illegal and “dirty” rugby tackle) en route to scoring a try, we’ll never get further than the half-way line.

That’s it (for now). Some top tips from a top guy. I hope you find them (and him) half as inspirational as I do:)

Wedding photograph, courtesy of Jean-Pierre Uys & rugby photographs, courtesy of Steve Haag

The Fine Line Between Self-Acceptance & Self-Improvement

Last week, the call for entry was launched for my new television series, MOOIMAAK, set to air on kykNET from 5 October 2017.

Since then, I am happy to report, we have been snowed under by entries and social media responses, some of which have included the following wonderfully candid comments: 

  • “I need something positive like this in my life’;
  • “It’s as if my prayers have been answered, I need a smile makeover. I am unable to afford a dentist and, as a result, I no longer smile with confidence”;
  • “Being chosen as a participant in this show, would be the most amazing gift I have ever received in my life.”

Whilst my talented production team and I are (needless to say) extremely excited about the public’s overwhelming response, it did make me sit back and wonder: to what extent can or should improving our looks be a determining factor in changing our lives?

The title of our show (“MOOIMAAK”) refers, loosely translated, to the act of “beautifying something or someone”. The term also has a more colloquial meaning in Afrikaans, denoting the idea of “playing nicely” or “being gentle”.  As the title thus suggests, our goal is without question to “beautify” or dramatically improve the appearance of our participants and, in so doing, improve their lives: perhaps we can give their self-confidence the boost it needs for them to finally apply for that job or go on that date.

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The dramatic effects of the latest skin-resurfacing laser treatments are indisputable

In addition, our aim is to achieve this outcome by “playing nicely” i.e. without knives (pun intended). We are excited about the sheer variety of non-surgical cosmetic and dental procedures on offer today in South Africa, at the hands of world-class professionals. This includes commonly known treatments such as chemical peels, botox and fillers to lesser known, cutting-edge procedures such as thread lifting and carboxytherapy, as well as the very latest cosmetic dentistry techniques.  We know that there are many women out there who might wish to improve their appearance by means of these treatments, but who lack the finances or the know-how to do so. This is where I hope to come in, by sharing my little black book of experts (from the country’s foremost non-surgical aesthetic practitioners and cosmetic dentists to my favourite makeup artists, hair stylists and designers) with our participants and, of course, our at-home audience.

At the same time, although we firmly believe that this series will change people’s lives, we are by no means advocating that “fixing your looks will fix your entire life”. How could anyone make such a claim when some of the world’s most annoyingly and gobsmackingly gorgeous people (e.g. Angelina Jolie) have publicly admitted to self-destructive behaviour that would, by all accounts, indicate a life somewhat broken on the inside?

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So, if we, at MOOIMAAK, are hoping to changes peoples’ lives by changing their appearance, but at the same time saying “good looks alone won’t make you happy”, we are back to my original question, and I repeat: “to what extent can or should improving our looks be a determining factor in improving our lives?”

Having given it some thought over the last few days, I feel the answer might lie somewhere in the balance: the balance between self-acceptance and self-empowerment.

Whilst there are some things about our appearance we certainly cannot change and thus need to accept, there are plenty of wonderful things we can do to improve the way we look and, hopefully, the way we feel (ranging from expensive and time-consuming treatments to simply getting a more flattering hair cut or learning some clever new makeup tricks). I, for one, have certainly experienced the impact that having a cosmetic problem (like problem skin or skew teeth) can have on one’s confidence. On the flip side, however, I have endured (like everyone else) some challenging times in my life, including painful breakups and the death of loved ones, where (finally) having a clear complexion or a semi-Colgate smile did nothing to lighten the load.

So, before deciding to improve our appearance (whether it be on a glamorous makeover show or not), perhaps we should be guided by the famous (paraphrased) words of Reinhold Niebuhr: “accept the things you cannot change, have the courage to change the things you can and have the wisdom to know the difference.”

In the current context, we might thus do well to ask ourselves the following questions (I’ll write them out in bullet points, in case your attention span is anything like mine, i.e. that of a goldfish with amnesia):

  • Which of our appearance-related problems do we need to accept and which can or do we want to do something about?
  • Which of the obstacles we face (like struggling to make that call to The Potential One or submit an application for The Perfect Job) might well be overcome by making some of the cosmetic changes on our wish list?
  • And, last but not least: which of the other ‘ugly’ issues in our lives (like an unhappy marriage or long-term family feuds) require a different kind of renewal?

Lastly, please know that, of course, I realise this is one of those highly controversial topics that everyone will have a different (yet equally valid) opinion on. I simply wanted to share my thoughts here and, hopefully, highlight a topic worthy of attention.

Love,

Clare.

How I Learned to Embrace Imperfection Through The Concept Of Wabi Sabi

ClareWieseblog2I was recently introduced by a close family friend to the super cool Japanese concept of “wabi-sabi”. During an impromptu “pop-in” to my parents’ place, where Lynda and my mother were enjoying espressos and rearranging furniture, I rather strongly  suggested that the way-too-visible air-conditioning unit in the lounge, amongst some rather nice pieces of art and a shiny black piano, might warrant a relocation. Lynda looked at me, with a knowing grin on her beautiful face, and simply said “no, darling, it’s wabi-sabi.”

As I’m lying here in bed with a flu that seems like it has literally “moved in” to my life (and has no plans to leave, ever), trying to tackle an avalanche of emails, it’s dawned on me that today is Thursday and, yet again, I have missed my usual 09h00 on a Thursday publishing time. Now, for a girl like me (who loves a bit of routine and order), this realisation has not been well received by the self.

Because, well, I generally like things to be perfect. Perfectly timed, perfectly presented and perfectly in order. But – as I am sure anyone reading this will agree – that just ain’t how life works. That’s why the concept of “wabi sabi” struck such a deep and powerful chord with me the moment I first heard of it. The fact that this powerful philosophy is of Japanese origin (and as we all know, I’m a tad obsessed with anything Japanese) is just a bonus.

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“Wabi-sabi” is a concept in traditional Japanese aesthetics referring to a world view based on the acceptance of transience and imperfection. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete:” take, for example, the aforesaid hideous air-con unit ill-placed in an otherwise elegant living space, handwritten post-it notes stuck onto the glass frames of original art works (one of my quirky mom Caro’s signature moves), laugh lines, crow’s feet, scars & skew noses (ask any rugby player) and hideously scuffed heels on pricey stilettos (my sister and I have a special knack for ruining shoes).

But, wait there is more (sorry, I could’t help myself;).  This powerful philosophy of “beauty in imperfection, impermanence and incompleteness”, of course, transcends mere aesthetics. In fact, it can and should, in my opinion, be applied to all aspects of life.

Not only does society expect us to look “ageless”, run a household like Bree from Desperate Housewives and find The One (with whom to have The Beautiful Babies) by no later than our mid thirties, but many of us only add to that load with our own additional list of perfectionistic expectations.

BrokenchairClareWieseThe problem, as we all know, is that reality looks a little bit different: many of us don’t have Heidi Klum’s metabolism or perfect, blemish-free skin (myself included), we all do and say stupid things that we subsequently regret, and most homes are not in a constant state of decluttered minimalism (contrary to how they might appear, from time to time, in perfectly styled magazine shoots). And, most relationships are either transient or imperfect. I have personally witnessed many close friends endure ugly, messy divorces or serious marital discord. I, myself, have experienced some significant relationship setbacks: I broke up with a former boyfriend after a six-year relationship just before I turned 30 (not a great age to experience a big break-up), and, a while ago, one of my very closest girlfriends and I were (as Ross from “Friends” put it) “on a break” for almost two years.

So, now that we have established (or, let’s just say we have, for the sake of this post) that “a constantly perfect life” will never exist, even though we might really want it to, what choice do we really have but to accept it? Even better, how liberating can it be to start embracing life’s imperfect, impermanent and incomplete nature?

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Please don’t get me wrong: I am by no means saying we should, or always can, let go of deeply ingrained perfectionistic tendencies (I would say my own personal tendencies are pretty much genetic, so I would need some sort of DNA re-mapping here). Moreover, I firmly believe such tendencies have their place: channeled correctly, they can be of great advantage to us, especially in the context of self-motivation, self-discipline and the achievement of goals.

The trick, I think, is to recognize the difference between the way you want things to be, sometimes, and the way they actually are. And, more than that, to be OK with that discrepancy.  So, these days, when I open my horrendously intimidating email inbox and watch it grow like some self-feeding little green monster, wake up to spot new fine (ish) lines around my eyes, have a fallout with a loved one or abandon big projects and change course mid-way, I try to remind myself of “wabi sabi” and the liberating value in accepting “what is, just as it is”.  As Richard Powell, author of Wabi Sabi Simple put it: “accepting the world as imperfect, unfinished, and transient, and then going deeper and celebrating that reality, is something not unlike freedom.”

OK, now that I’ve gotten that off my metaphorical chest, please excuse me whilst I return to nursing my actual, real-life flu (which I’m hoping will begin to reveal its transience any second now).

PS If you’re intrigued and want to know more, here’s a list of Amazon.com‘s books on “wabi sabi”.  I can’t recommend any particular one, I’m afraid, but whichever one you get, I’m sure it will be imperfectly perfect:)

Love,

Clare

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Inside My Wardrobe (& The Silo Hotel) Part 3 | Dancing On The Rooftop

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So, this is our final instalment in the fabulous Silo fashion series, which award-winning New York based photographer Jean-Pierre Uys lovingly shot & directed for us at Cape Town’s hottest new hotel (you guessed it, The Silo). Don’t miss Part 1 Part 2 of this editorial, if you didn’t catch them previously.

As I type this, it’s 23h22 at night and I can’t sleep. It might have something to do with the Very Exciting But Nerve-Wracking Project I am about to embark upon this week or it could just be because my body likes to keep me from sleep when I really, really need it (you know, just for fun and, of course, to annoy my poor husband who already puts up with so much and has to get up at 05h00 every morning for Lunatic Gym Hour).

Due to the necessary planning & preparation that has gone into the above-mentioned Project, you might have noticed that I (embarrassingly) failed to post anything this week at the usual 09h00 on Thursday time slot. I do sincerely apologise for this, as I can’t stand it when people make me wait! So, I figured, now is as good a time as any to catch up on my bloggin’ backlog.

Anyway, here are some wonderfully happy photographs that my incredibly talented team (details below) and I created for the last part of this series. We took these photos at the end of a (very long but super fun) day, after Gilbert and Renee’s phones had run out of data space (due to the unprecedented amount of selfies taken between them), all of us had had a bit of champagne, the sun was setting over Lion’s Head & a crowd of Cape Town’s high-society cocktail drinkers were observing this bunch of crazy kids with what could only be described as bewildered amusement. (I can’t wait to post the behind-the-scenes pics of this day, as they are just too good not to share in a separate post).

All shots were taken on the breathtakingly beautiful rooftop of the Silo hotel – probably the best place in town to get a 360 degree panoramic view of the Mother City, in all its glory.  (FYI: The rooftop bar is not open to the public on a walk-in basis, but bookings can be made in advance. And, believe me, you should make one!)

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WHAT I WORE

Dress | this floaty, dreamy full-length silk gown (which we almost ended up submerging in the pool, due to having an “impulsive arty moment” which thankfully passed) is from one of my favourite Italian fashion houses, Etro. I originally bought it in London for my Kitchen Tea last year, but never ended up wearing it.

Layered necklaces | the rose gold Double Disc Diamond Initial Necklace is from Sloane & Madison (my own jewellery company, based in South Africa. Our doors are temporarily closed, but if you are really insistent, like some of our dear clients have been:), you might be able to find us at clare@sloaneandmadison.com). The longer rose gold vermeil and diamond necklace is from Monica Vinader.

Rings | to create a boho luxe look I really loved, I layered some (rather expensive) fine jewellery Paka Paka yellow gold and rose gold pieces with costume jewellery pieces by high-street chain, Aldo. They often have some well-designed costume items that are so easy to wear.

MY GLAM SQUAD

Photography & (some necessary;) re-touching by Jean-Pierre Uys | Makeup by the one and only Renee De Wit | Hair by Gilbert Mofubelu at Spoilt (moving to Hair soon) | Styling by Clare Wiese & Shari Kennedy

A HUGE THANK-YOU TO THE AMAZING SILO HOTEL FOR ALLOWING US TO DANCE ON THEIR ROOFTOPS.

If you’re enjoying this blog, please don’t forget to Like The Global Critic Facebook’s page or, even better, if you loved this particular post, share it on your Facebook wall (as we know by now, #sharingiscaring;)

Love,

Clare.

Inside My Wardrobe (& The Silo Hotel) Part 2 | In Herve Leger at The Willaston Bar

0756As you might have seen, last week I posted the first of our launching three-part fashion and beauty series, featuring a simple black cocktail ensemble I am currently loving, set inside the marvellous penthouse of the The Royal Portfolio’s brand new Silo Hotel.

For today’s post, I am sharing our second round of photographs by the incredible Jean-Pierre Uys, featuring a super formal black-tie look that is very close to my heart: I first wore this dress at my thirtieth birthday party at our family wine estate, Lourensford, about four years ago. I still remember spotting the dress in Harrods, after a week-long and extremely thorough search in ice-cold London, calling my dad and asking him whether he thought the dress was too expensive. He said “if you really love it, you’ll only turn thirty once, so get it and enjoy it.” And, while I did only turn 30 once (thank heavens for that, because it did not come without its own very unattractive little quarter-life crisis), I have worn this treasured wardrobe item on many subsequent special occasions and, I figure, if I work out the cost per wear, it actually wasn’t that expensive;). You can watch a short video clip of my 30th birthday party here (event co-ordination by The Aleit Group).

As the setting for the second part of this series, I wanted to give you a glimpse into the magnificently furnished Willaston Bar at the Silo. Our (crazy) crew fell instantly in love with the opulent and seductive energy of this particular spot at the hotel, boasting unbeatable views of Cape Town’s city centre in a magically eclectic, jewel-toned environment.

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After ordering a Martini or two, and making absolutely sure that Gilbert and Renee had taken a sufficient amount of selfies in this new setting,  we started creating some images. Here is a selection of a few of my favourits. I hope you enjoy them. And, if you live in Cape Town or are planning a visit soon, go ahead and put “sunsets drink at the Willaston Bar” right at the top of your to-do list.

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WHAT I WORE

Dress | the black full-length beaded evening gown is by Herve Leger.

Shoes | the patent leather black strappy sandals are by Jimmy Choo (my all-time favourite shoe brand. I wore Choos on my wedding night on the dance floor until 05h30 and my feet still had blood supply at the end of it – that’s saying something.)

Diamond earrings | these are my everyday (and pretty much every evening) go-to earrings: a simple pair of 0.80ct diamond studs claw-set in 18 carat white gold. Personally, I prefer smaller diamond studs to larger ones, as I find the bigger ones often look fake and a tad Desperate Housewives. I am thinking of getting some black diamond studs made, set in rose gold claws, which I think will be amaze-balls.

Engagement & wedding ring set | these rings were designed by the lovely Ida-Elsje and myself, as custom-made Paka Paka pieces. The engagement ring features one brilliant-cut centre stone, flanked by vertically- and horizontally positioned baguette diamonds that form a complete eternity band. My wedding ring consists of baguette diamonds only, and all the stones have been set in platinum claws. You can see I have a small thing for baguettes (the edible version too, I’m afraid).

Cocktail ring | the 18 carat rose gold and black ceramic cocktail ring I’m wearing here is from the iconic B-Zero collection by famed Italian jewellery house, Bulgari. It was given to me by my darling younger sister, as my 30th birthday gift, and it’s thus become one of my most treasured items.

Stole by Errol Arendz (my favourite South African designer and an absolute hoot – now that I think about it, I could write a whole blog post just on him. In fact, a video interview (after a few glasses of bubbly) would be best. Watch this space.

Handbag by Chanel (this has been my go-to evening bag for the last decade). “I own too many Chanel bags” said no woman, ever.

MY HAIR & MAKEUP

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HAIR | Gilbert gave my hair a look that was a bit glamorous, a bit messy-hair-don’t-care. We wanted to keep things young and modern and achieved this using Gil’s Kardashian Beauty curling tong, a sufficient amount of old-school teasing and our hands (for a regular old pull-through, to loosen those curls). And, while no volumising mousse, spray or shampoo will, in my opinion, ever achieve the same effects as a good-old-fashioned tease (done right, of course), I am feeling generous today and want to share a little hair-care secret with you: be introduced to Joico’s Glamtex Backbomb Effect Spray (as the name says, it’s basically a backcomb in a bottle). Use this together with a good manual tease and you (and your hair) will be transported to new heights. Believe me when I say, this stuff works. (If you live in Cape Town or South Africa: contact any hair salon that stocks Joico to get your paws on a bottle of Glamtex.)

MAKEUP | Renee used the following key makeup products on me to create some sultry smokiness (I’ve been known to tell Ren not to “under-smoke” me and, as usual, she didn’t disappoint): Bobbi Brown’s Smokey Cool Eyeshadow Palette, MAC’s Smolder Eye Liner (this is a must-have makeup product for any girl who loves a smokey eye), Sensai’s Fluid Finish Lasting Velvet Foundation and, on my lips, Chanel Rouge Coco Gloss Moisturizing Glossimer in 172 (a soft peachy pink colour in a translucent gloss finish.)

If you can never get enough makeup tips, read my recent interview with Renee where she generously shares a whole list of her best-kept beauty secrets.

WITH MY SINCEREST THANKS TO THE WORLD’S BEST GLAM SQUAD

Photography & (some necessary;) re-touching by Jean-Pierre Uys | The single photograph of the bar, appearing at the top of this post, is courtesy of the Silo Hotel | Makeup by Renee De Wit | Hair by Gilbert Mofubelu at Spoilt (moving to Hair soon) | Styling by Clare Wiese & Shari Kennedy

& THE AMAZING SILO HOTEL, SUPPORTED BY THEIR WONDERFUL MANAGEMENT TEAM. I WISH YOU ALL THE SUCCESS YOU DESERVE.

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Love,

Clare.