Posted in Fashion, Reviews

Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte Lip Tint – Raving Red – Review



Kajal has been the only makeup item I’ve owned for a very long time but I decided to break the monotony the instant I saw Kareena Kapoor sporting two vibrant shades in Lakme’s recent Absolute Lip Pout advert. So, I went ahead and got myself a Raving Red; after virtually trying it out on the Lakme Makeup Pro app to amazing results! The range comes in 6 gorgeous matte colours, which mostly comprises pinks and reds. I was super excited to try it out as matte is more ‘my thing’ than gloss.

Launched during the Lakme Fashion Week 2015, each stick is priced at Rs. 650 for 3.5 grams. Last season it was all about gloss but this time, matte’s taken centre stage with these 6 exciting shades:

  • Magenta Magic
  • Pink Fantasy
  • Raving Red
  • Starlet Red
  • Tangerine Touch
  • Victorian Rose

photo 3

Let’s start with the playfully coloured packaging. The chubby crayons come with a body that has the same matte colour it contains inside, along with a silver cap. They’re retractable and don’t need to be sharpened. The thought of sharpening any product breaks my heart because of the amount of wastage, so this is a definite plus for me.

I like the fragrance, though that’s completely subjective. It lasts for about 3-4 hours after which the colour starts to fade and leaves a little tint which means you have to re-apply. By personal experience, it isn’t very easy to apply and doesn’t quite glide on like a dream. It isn’t as smooth as I’d imagined and those with dry lips definitely need to exfoliate and moisturize before application. It is matte and therefore has a drying effect. You may need to dab on a little bit of lip balm before applying, if you have very dry lips.


I wasn’t as pleased with the swatches as after applying to the lips. The colour turns out really well! It’s fairly well pigmented and leaves a lovely tint (as the name suggests) in one swipe. It does require a reasonable number of swipes though if you want a deeper shade. Speaking about the colour I have, Raving Red is a subtle shade of red; if you’re not one who likes the bright blood-red kind, this one’s for you. It gives a certain amount of brightness to my face and adds a pop of colour to my usually understated sense of style. It also transfers a bit.


All in all, it delivers on most of its promises. The colour is vibrant, it has a matte finish, the colour pay off is really good, it doesn’t require sharpening. In my opinion, the application was not as quick, easy or comfortable as claimed. Seems the product isn’t quite meant for people with dry lips. There’s a little scope of improvement there so as to not let a portion of Lakme loyalists feel left out. I, for one, am completely loving it, woohoo! Kudos to Lakme; matte fans will love this and others may even convert 😉

photo 4 (1)

Posted in Fashion, Personal, Reviews

Lakme Makeup Pro App – Review



In an episode of MTV’s very first season of India’s Next Top Model, the contestants were seen tip-tapping on a tablet, testing the remarkable features of the Lakme Makeup Pro app by Hindustan Unilever Ltd. (a widely trusted company whose brands Indians swear by). I was enamoured. I mean you apply makeup… but you don’t. Get what I mean? No? Wait, I’ll be glad to elucidate.

For starters, the app is free on Android. So yesterday I nicked my mom’s phone to download it. Isn’t available on iOS yet, so couldn’t get it on mine. Why you do this Lakme? *cries* It opens up in front-camera mode where your camera becomes a mirror. You can then virtually try out Lakme’s latest looks without having to drag your lazy feet to the store. You may:

  • Work on your face in real time
  • Or, simply click a picture then and there
  • Orrr, if you’re not camera-ready, you could also select a nice full-face selfie from your gadget gallery instead!


Time to bash some misconceptions! To all those negative review(er)s –

I’ve read a lot of complaints in the Review section of the app, about certain features ‘not working’ or facial features not getting detected. Well, indeed, some eye makeup features don’t seem to work in real time mode. Try clicking a picture instead. They work fine there! Also there’s an ‘adjust’ option to make life easier. Please take some time and have a little patience. In all fairness, I did have some difficulty too. It does need slight improvement! (Psst, hey, Lakme are you listening?) However, it’s technology, something many don’t understand. It’s best left to the experts. Let’s give Lakme a break and cut them some slack, no? The app is an innovative creation after all! *applauds*


The Pro Stylist Looks option – You have a variety of pre-set looks which can be sort by:

  • Occasion – Day time, Night out, Minimal Ethnic & Ornate traditional
  • Outfit Colour

There is also a DIY selection of makeup options to choose from:

  • Skin – To de-tan, add gloss, make it radiant
  • Face – To apply a range of blush, compact, mousse, concealer
  • Eyes – From mascara to eyeliner, kohl to kajal, eye shadow et al
  • Lips – My ‘app’solute favourite, the matte range (I’ve tried it on my pictures, which you can see below), sculpt and gloss

My favourite is the intensity adjusting option. I’m a little averse to dressing OTT and couldn’t agree more with Shahrukh Khan who says it’s better to be under-dressed than over-dressed.

You can save/share your final look and view all Lakme products you’ve used. Select your favourite ones to buy directly from their e-commerce partner. Talk about major convenience! Phew!

photo (2)

I strongly recommend giving it a shot! It’s a must try!

Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte - Raving Red
Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte – Raving Red (*random thought* It makes my teeth look whiter!)


Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte - Pink Fantasy (which happens to be my favourite)
Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte – Pink Fantasy (Which happens to be my favourite)


Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte - Starlet Red
Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte – Starlet Red


Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte - Tangerine (Yes, the lip colour matches the curtains. Oopsie!)
Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte – Tangerine Touch (Yes, the lip colour matches the curtains behind. Oopsie!)


Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte - Victorian Rose
Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte – Victorian Rose


Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte - Magenta Magic
Lakme Absolute Lip Pout Matte – Magenta Magic

The reason I instantly took to this App was mainly due to the ease of use. Honestly, I’ve always been comfortable with my no-makeup look but have been trying to ‘learn’ the basics since some time now. The Lakme Makeup Pro App was probably just the push I needed. Thanks for making the experience so wonderful!

Lakme’s sure managed to convert me. Kudos Lakme, I see what you did there 😉

Posted in Reviews

eKavach Parental Control App

This blog is written for participation in the blogging contest by eKavach Parental Control App – . I am writing about being a #eSuperMom or #eSuperDad! You can also submit your entry here and stand a chance to win Gold/Diamond jewelry and exciting shopping vouchers.

Our neighbours are rich. Hardworking too (which is probably why they are affluent in the first place). Uncle and aunty leave for their office early every morning and return late. The business is a family affair that demands contribution from all the elder family members. They have two young children, one boy of 14 and a girl of 8 years of age. Spoilt silly and addicted to the internet like butterflies to nectar, they get whatever they want even before they realise. Placed under the care of a nanny and with no parent around to supervise, it isn’t impossible that the children go astray. Yet, their parents are tension-free. ‘Why’, you ask? Well, because they have eKAVACH Parental Control App!


There’s no other like it in India that provides online safety for children. Available on Android, this free application allows parents to monitor and control content, screen time and apps on their kid’s mobile devices, without the need of being physically present. This app is the one to be installed on the parents’ device. There is also another one which must be installed simultaneously on the children’s device to make the check possible.

Some key parental controls that protect kids from online dangers, like a shield (or Kavach, as the name suggests) are:

  • Safe browsing, web content filtering and safe search for major browsers. (Safe search needs to be enabled in Google by the parents)
  • Control internet usage and set time limit
  • Manage apps
  • Real time alerts in case of breach. If the parent cannot access internet, he’s sent an SMS. This allows swift action and measures to be taken to alleviate the issue
  • Kids can send SOS message, with geo location, to the parent from their device in case of emergency

eKAVACH App provides protection and guards children from various threats such as internet addiction, cyber bullying, cyber stalking and more.

My neighbours are, in my opinion, the #eSuperMom & #eSuperDad of the cyber era! Besides using the eKAVACH App, they take whatever little time they have from their hectic schedule to school their kids on online safety. Make sure you too speak to your children about healthy online activities so as to keep them aware. Also, download the eKAVACH app now and allow it to be an active participant in safeguarding your child!

Happy browsing!

Posted in Musing, Thoughts, Writing

He Walks Beside You

“तेरे साथी मेरे कदमों के हैं निशाँ

तू ना जाने आस पास है ख़ुदा |”

“My footsteps are your companion,
You don’t know (realise) God is beside you.”

This quote is from a song that never fails to give me goose bumps. Aas Paas Khuda from Anjaana Anjaani, starring Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra.

I’m a theist through and through. I don’t doubt the existence of God, the one supreme force the Universe reveres. An absolute believer and fervently spiritual (not necessarily, religious), the instant I read this week’s IndiSpire topic, several quotes in praise of God flitted in and out of my mind. From mellifluous Bhajans to Holy words from Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji; from profound Sufi songs to the heart-warming Hymns we sang in school. Finally, my mind rested on this one.

Life is made up of crests and troughs. This phrase acts as a guiding force when I feel down. It speaks of what He wants us to believe. There’s nothing God can’t fix. Know that He’s always by our side; invisible but never indifferent. He’s our permanent go-to person; a parent, a teacher, a best friend. When you feel overwhelmed, you know who to turn to. He’s always watching out for you. Mightier than all your problems put together, He’s the Almighty. Trust, that He’s been, is and will always be with you.

This post is written for IndiSpire, Edition #83


Posted in Entertainment, Fashion, Personal, Reviews, Thoughts, Writing

The Man Bun

One insomniac night this week, lying in bed and going through my Instagram feed, I came across a picture of our very own gabru Punjabi munda, Karan Kundra in this surprising new avatar. I let-slip my phone which landed smack on my face *ouch* Hey, don’t you laugh! You would’ve done the same, it is that beautiful. Look!

photo 1 (1)

His Instagram has had regular updates in the past week with pictures of him flaunting this stunning top knot. He’s currently in Hong Kong shooting with Sana Saeed, for an all new season of Life Mein Ek Baar, on Fox Life India. So does that mean we get to see him look amazing like this on the show? Woohoo!

Honestly, I’ve disliked the long-locks look on men, I’m all for short hair. Even John Abraham’s flowing tresses at one point, couldn’t impress me. (My opinion, though you probably don’t care.) I’ve had a recent change of mind, though. There’s no denying that the few men who can actually pull it off are jaw-dropping, head turners.

See what I mean?
See what I mean?

Earlier this year, Shahid Kapoor was seen rocking the top-knot in Dubai. After the buzz cut in Haider, his lustrous mane’s all grown out and ready for Udta Punjab. (The upcoming film also stars Alia Bhatt, Kareena Kapoor and Diljit Dosanjh – who makes his Bollywood debut) Grow on, Shahid! No complaints hair… Err… here!


In this exclusive photo shoot with MW (Man’s World) Magazine for their April edition, Shahid looks incredible. *phew* Is the AC in here even working?!

Is it hot, or is it hot?
Is this hot, or is this hot?

Just FYI, there’s a difference between a man bun and a top knot. The former is, simply, long hair tied back in a bun. The top knot is a combination of a man bun and an undercut where the sides are shot and the hair in the middle is long enough to tie up. They clearly aren’t meant for everyone so steer clear, unless you have the flair, flamboyance and looks to carry it off.

Speaking of panache, here you go – Hrithik Roshan wearing the man bun. What can this guy NOT do, Greek God of Bollywood that he is!

Such beauty! *cries*
Such beauty! *cries*

The word ‘God’ reminds me – Bollywood’s demigod Shahrukh Khan sported the man bun in Don. Many did not quite approve of it. Neither did I. (Just saying.) You’ve got to admit though, that SRK knows how to rock everything that’s thrown his way! There’s a reason he’s the ‘Betaj Badshah’. The King Khan. Whatever Shahrukh Khan does is cool. Just because.

Shush, no one questions the King
Shush, no one questions the King

All this drooling, umm, Googling – who said drooling? Me? Nah! – takes me back to a tiny incident that occured recently. So, there I was waiting at the bus stop, staring into space and minding my own business, when I saw two impeccably dressed men. One of them sported a beard and a super neat top bun. I can’t recollect how many buses I missed or who walked past me or where I was or even who I was, until they were out of sight. It’s crazy I know but that’s an extremely rare sight in my city.

We need more Bollywood hunks picking up this trend and NOW! I believe Ranveer Singh, with his adorable eccentricity, will carry it off with aplomb! The Pogonophile in me also believes we need a word for ‘an admirer of man buns’.

Let me know what you think about the man bun & topknot. Yay or nay? Which Indian celebrity would you love to see sporting such a hairstyle?

Till then let’s hair – hear – it for these handsome celebrities! Round of applause toh Bun-ta hai na, boss!

Bradley (Brad) Cooper
Bradley (Brad) Cooper
Orlando Bloom
Orlando Bloom
Shia LaBeouf
Shia LaBeouf
Jared Leto
Jared Leto
Chris Hemsworth
Chris Hemsworth
Brad Pitt
Brad Pitt
David Beckham
David Beckham


Zayn Malik - Who would believe the lad is only 22 years old?
Zayn Malik – Who would believe the lad is only 22 years old?
Posted in Bloggers Meet, Personal, Writing

Berger Express Painting IndiBlogger Meet – Kolkata

photo 2
I love stalking… err… following, IndiBlogger; right from the posts on their website, to Facebook, Twitter and the likes. Basically, on every possible social platform. Wait, that counts as stalking. Oh, never mind! So, when I was snooping on them – uhh, scrolling down the web page, NOT snooping – I chanced upon a post about an upcoming Berger Express – IndiBlogger meet, in KOLKATA. My first reaction was, ‘Whoa! What? Kolkata?! Yay!’ My mind was buzzing with excitement and so loud, that for a minute I was worried my co-passenger might hear me! I managed to get home though the heady rush had me feeling trippy.
I signed up – but of course – and started badgering my blogger-friend, Arnaba (friend first, blogger later) to register too. The event was this Saturday and ever since, the hugely popular Indeep Bakshi song has taken on a new meaning in my life. *Kudi Saturday Saturday kardi rehndi ae*. Ahem! So, the truly grand evening was organised in the ornate conference hall of The Oberoi Grand Hotel.

photo 2 (2)
It’s been exactly a year to my first post (talk about co-incidences). The initial jitters of being a relative newbie in the blogger world vanished when we were greeted by amiable veteran bloggers. Kudos to the ever-smiling, Smart-Alec(y), super amazing IndiBlogger team for the warmth they showered throughout the evening. You guys are brilliant!
The tone of the evening was set by the anchor – whose subtle sarcasm and witty remarks deserve special mention – who made us ‘sing’ to Ich Will by Rammstein.

Hell Yeah!
Hell Yeah!

We started off with an introduction round. It was an enlightening session where I got to learn about people of varying ages and thought-processes. I honestly surprised myself as I volunteered to introduce my blog. I’ve not really been a mic person. I blog about everything under the sun, that catches my attention. I genuinely believe it’s better to be a Jack of all trades than a master of one (or two), which is plain boring. I mean, the first thing you do when you don’t know why you’re ill, is you visit a General Physician, right? There you go! Your go-to person is always a Jack, trust me!

IndiCapture. Thank you for my favourite pic, Team!
IndiCapture. Thank you for my favourite pic, Team!

photo 1
The star of the evening was Berger of course! The brand is synonymous with paint! Think painting, think Berger. We were shown an AV, a presentation and demonstrations of their new Express range. This trusted brand has brought in a product line that simply makes the process faster, cleaner and better.

photo 5

They have some powerful machines like the Hand Held Sander, Long Handle Sander, Multi-purpose Mixer, Auto Roller and Jet Washer. Berger brings out the colour in life. This Diwali, you know where you’re headed! Go ahead and let them paint your imagination!

Painting woes, now no more. Berger Express to the rescue!
Painting woes, now no more. Berger Express to the rescue!

Our first activity was the Sandpaper task, where, in groups of about 6, we had to smooth out a rough plank using sandpaper. Berger and IndiBlogger weren’t going to let us just sit around. Clearly, they wanted us to rough it out… I mean… smooth-it-out. (Such clever, much wow.) Our team, Bloggeratti, was ‘done and dusted’ (so much pun) in 34 seconds flat!

This picture is doctored! Nah, j/k, I just said that for pun's sake. Geddit, geddit?
This picture is doctored! Nah, j/k, I just said that for pun’s sake. Geddit, geddit?

The second task took the Berger tagline ‘paint your imagination’ to another level. The teams painted a social cause close to their hearts, on a canvas, with Berger paint! Well, not showing off really, we placed 2nd. Woohoo! We received a Microsoft Portable Dual Charger, each!

The Bloggeratti
The Bloggeratti

Speaking of winning, I won a JBL Portable Speaker for my #BergerXp tweet. (Still not showing off. Really.) Thank you guys for the gadgets and the sense of accomplishment that comes with the win.

I’m so glad Team Bloggeratti selected me to describe our painting to the judges. Impromptu speech that it was. Also, thank you for taking my interview on the Express range, Team Berger! I never thought I’d even be able to stutter, let alone speak, looking straight into the camera. But I did. Whoa! *shudders* I guess I am a mic person after all!

Swag level : Microsoft & JBL
Swag level : Microsoft & JBL

We wrapped it all up with a delicious plate-full of food and dessert, collected our Berger goodie bags and said our final good-byes.

photo 4 (2)
I only eat salad. No kidding.
The good stuff!
The good stuff!

An experience to cherish for a lifetime, I’m glad I met some wonderful fellow-bloggers. Thank you Berger, and IndiBlogger.

The Good People

And hey! Team IndiBlogger, hope to see you here again, real soon!

As you say, IndiBlogger. As you say.
As you say, IndiBlogger. As you say.

(A few images have been taken from the IndiBlogger Facebook page)

Posted in Musing, Poetry, Thoughts, Writing

Moody Poetess

‘Write a 2-minute poem,’ they said,
I yawned, as I rolled out of bed,
Stretching, tripping, scratching my head,
‘My two minute poem.’ Yep! That’s what I read.

I’m a moody poetess,
Rarely sorted, mostly a mess,
“What shall I write? Umm,”
I say to myself;
Well, that’s anybody’s guess!

Sleepy as I am, I sit & jot
Every stray idea, plot, thought,
Can’t let this brain rust and rot,
Bless this poem, oh dear God!

So, as yarn is spun from thread,
I conjure this off the top of my head,
My body is tired, eyes feel like lead;
Now that I’ve done what they said,
It’s time I get back to bed;
‘My 2-minute poem,’
Yes, that’s what I read.

This Poem is written for IndiSpire, Edition #81


Posted in Musing, Personal, Thoughts, Writing

Once A Xaverian, Always A Xaverian


The thing about clichés is that they’re done to death but undeniably true.

This apparently sudden expression of love for St. Xavier’s is probably because I re-visited it yesterday. From the moment I took my first step towards college from Mullick Bazaar crossing, it was an onslaught of memories. What struck me first was that I was actually walking, not running; which I’d do quite often because I was late for class almost all the time.

Walking past the Church, I checked my reflection in a car window; had a scuffle with my own bag, trying to find my ID card; walked in through the green gates, peering into the Chapel; listened to the sound of the fountain that surrounds the towering St. Francis Xavier idol, as my senses soaked in the welcome feeling of a familiar place. Everything I did was still the same, only probably, for the last time.

photo (1)

I walked past the stairs – which had become an inescapable part of our daily exercise routine (take the stairs to the 4th floor every day and you’ll know) – and straight into the canteen. Ah! The all-time favourite hang-out spot. Well, besides the Green Benches (in the campus) and Delights (outside) of course. Speaking of which, you cannot miss Au Bon Pain, Cha Bar, CCD & the likes on Park Street which are more often than not, haunted by Xaverians across all departments and batches.

photo 1

From frequent group presentations, that definitely made friends out of class mates, to uncomfortably-frequent exams, meeting-up-to-discuss was an unspoken necessity. Speaking of which, I’d like to know how much money these cafes made off us, considering we needed their ‘free’ Wi-Fi all the time *wonders*.

The lush college grounds, Room No. 7, the Computer Lab. and of course our classroom, hold so many fond (or not) memories. What is closest to my heart is the Catholic-institute-aura of college. It reminds me of my Alma Mater, Pratt Memorial School, right from the Christmas decoration, the sound of carols emanating from some distant room, the ‘Christmassy’ feeling in general, down to the green & yellow facade in particular.

photo 2

I’ll never forget the times, when I was still a school student and I’d walk past the beckoning yellow-green building with fervent longing and tacit prayers; while the structure greeted me with stoic silence.

Let me tell you I’ve been a consistently good student but by no means a topper. Frankly, I stood no chance of ever studying in the most prestigious institute of Kolkata, St. Xavier’s College. (Not like that killed me or anything; in all honesty and fairness, I wouldn’t swap my three years at JD Birla for anything in the world).

Nonetheless, if an opportunity knocks, take it because, well, an adage says it does so only once. So, this one random day in the month of March last year, my friend suggested I put in an application for a PG Diploma course in Integrated Marketing Communication at St. Xavier’s. My first reaction was, ‘Yeah right. I’m never getting through.’ Talk about optimism.

It’s an impulsive chance I took, without too much thought, which paid off more than well. I have some sense of direction now, which is definitely better than not having any *shrugs*. Some crazy-fun friends to last a lifetime, the respectable top-brass of the Marketing Communication Industry to learn from and a suitcase full of memories; I’m taking back a lot from St. Xavier’s. Lame-pun alert! Xavier’s is my favourite brand. Get it? IMC? Brand? Not funny? Uhh, okay *sighs*.

Thank you, St. Xavier’s. You’ll definitely be one of my most cherished experiences. Ever. Nihil Ultra! *the feels*

With love,
A Xaverian