One of my very early blog posts was about FM Hair in Sydney CBD. I love that salon and have been going there religiously for about 5 years. I’ve blogged about them earlier here and then again here when I got my “new hair” with a fringe.
Recently I’ve discovered a new salon which is located on Liverpool street. It’s in the walkway off Liverpool street, connecting you to the World Square shopping area. I was working nearby and saw that there was a new cozy hair salon and a nail bar in one venue called Beauty Story.
Before going to Bali, I decided to try out Beauty Story and get a shellac manicure. I have long stopped getting shellac because I saw some brittleness in my nails, but for a holiday and when I need to keep my hands presentable such as when meeting new people at work, I like shellac because it lasts and just looks polished and neat longer.
Shellac was the original brand that started the whole UV lamp polish revolution, but there are so many brands now that have released nail polishes with the same properties. The good thing about it is that there are thousands of colours to choose from now so you’ll have to make up your mind on which colour you want before sitting down with a nail technician. I chose bright orange because I was already in holiday mode at the time.
Nailpolish Selection at Beauty Story
I paid $55 for Classic Manicure – Shellac polish including cuticle care, massage and shaping.
There is also an option to do a Mini Manicure, just Shellac polish with shaping for $25 (This is a good option when you’re in a hurry and super affordable!)
Instagram capture of Orange Nails in Bali
When I got back from Bali (another story on being stuck in Bali due to Volcanic ash later), I went back to Beauty Story to take off my gel polish and got a more neutral colour on visibly shorter and more practical nails.
Showing off my new Peachbox jewellery with Neutral Shellac by Beauty Story
I enjoyed both of my experiences. The least enjoyable part of the experience is removing the old gel polish because it requires a soak off. I tried to remove Shellac/gel polish at home and it’s always a mess. The nail technicians at Beauty Story are really good at removing the old polish, doing it quickly, efficiently and painlessly. I have found in the past that nail salon technicians can be a bit rough when it comes to removing gel colour and the acetone soak off is harsh enough without that. At Beauty Story, I was confident both times that I wouldn’t get any pulls or cuts because the girls were so professional.
From the looks of it the equipment they use is always sterilised and the nail tools come in individually packaged sterilised pouches which is always good to see. I can’t do manicure/pedicures any more if I see that the nail tools have been used on multiple people without sterilising in between. You see it a lot in Thailand or Philippines and recently Bali. I didn’t like the look of that at all.
I also got my hair washed and blow dried both times when I got my nails done. That’s the beauty of this place, you can get everything done in one go. I never had to make appointments and was able to get service right away.
A wash and blow dry for my hair length (relatively long) costs $30 at Beauty Story. I recognised (from what I am guessing is) one of the owners or the owner and he used to work at FM hair salon. I guess I feel like I am in good hands since I have watched him work on a few people and the results are always amazing. Seriously, you will know who I am talking about straight away. The only guys in the salon with long-ish hair and glasses.
I didn’t get my hair styled by him, but a couple of other hair stylists. I didn’t want to go too curly this time and asked for loose waves. Wasn’t disappointed.
Loose Waves After a Wash and Blow Dry
If you want to be sure there are appointments, best to call up especially if you’re travelling into the city. I would say 90% of the time they’ll serve you right away or within a 5-10 minute waiting period.
For all details – MAP and Phone number click here
Address: SHOP 5/ 123 Liverpool st, Sydney CBD 2000
Phone: 02 9262 9292
Open hours: 10am – 8pm (As far as I know, Every day of the week). Their Google+page says otherwise but I’ve been there on a Saturday and a Sunday both times.
Other services include Facials, Massage, Eyelash Extensions, Perm, Hair Treatments, Hair Colour, Waxing.
* I was not endorsed/paid/sponsored to write this review. This is an honest review from personal experience at Beauty Story. All opinions are my own.
Jetlag can cause havoc to many a traveller’s plan, both on the ground in a new country and on home soil as you try and slip back into everyday life. If you can avoid jetlag, do it at all costs because you will feel fresher, have more energy and you’ll have a clear mind as you travel. If you’re yet to master the art of evading jetlag, here are some helpful tips to make your next long haul journey that little bit more pleasant.
1. Keep Busy
Upon your arrival abroad, hit the ground running and keep busy to avoid being tired. Adrenalin will kick in and you’ll be able to push through what’s left of your new time zone and collapse into bed at a respectable hour to reset your body clock. A great way to ensure you are kept busy in the first few days of your trip is to book yourself on a boutique tour, with operators such as Gypsian Boutique Tours, from the day you land so you have a set itinerary in place and people to help push you through the jetlag.
2. Use Your Stopover Wisely
If you have a stopover en route to your final destination, use your layover time to prepare yourself for the next flight so you can slip right into the correct time zone upon your arrival. If you are arriving early in the morning and will have to stay awake all day, make yourself tired during your stopover by walking, shopping and eating the entire time. Alternatively, if you are arriving at night and want to go straight to bed for a full night’s sleep in your final destination, have a nap during your stopover and try to stay awake for the entirety of the next flight.
3. Eat Well and Drink Lots of Water
While you are in transit it is important to drink lots of water and keep yourself hydrated, especially when flying. It’s also important to eat regularly and, if possible, in line with the time zone you are entering so your eating habits get used to the new routine. Eat a lot of fruit and vegetables when you can and avoid soft drink, alcohol and fast-food because it will make you feel fatigued and sluggish.
4. Keep Comfortable
If you need to sleep while in the air, ensure you are comfortable to give yourself the best chance. Always wear comfortable clothes while flying, ask for a blanket if you are cold and use your neck pillow. If you’re still struggling to sleep, drape a scarf loosely around your face to create darkness and listen to some calming music to block out all other sounds. I like to keep my noise cancelling headphones handy to block out crying babies and the aircraft noise.
5. Coffee Helps
When it gets to 10am and you’re feeling like it should be midnight, a cup of coffee will be your new best friend. Drink coffee in moderation throughout the day as you are adjusting to a new time zone as the injection of caffeine will help you stay awake without fatigue for at least a couple more hours. Once you are settling back into a routine, wean yourself off multiple coffees a day and return to just one in the morning.
Ultimately, it is near impossible to avoid jetlag of some degree, but if you take these tips on board, you’ll have the best chance of slipping straight into a new time zone without fatigue and tiredness impacting your plans.
What tips have you got to avoid jetlag?
Whether you’ve been inspired by a home renovation TV show or have been surfing through a few interior design Pinterest boards, chances are you’re reading this because you have big ambitions for your bedroom’s décor. Anywhere you go on social media, there’s likely a photo of a recently redecorated bedroom not far away – maybe it’s your turn now.
You too can have your own chic bedroom by taking on board some of the tips below.
Flooring can play a surprisingly large role in the overall appearance and functionality of the bedroom, as well as the temperature regulation of the area. Carpet is the most common flooring and often the most practical. Not only does it provide a deep, plush and comfortable surface, but it also keeps the warmth in – perfect for the chilly winter months. For the best bedroom floors, you shouldn’t just rush out and buy any old carpet though. There are plenty of online resources for helping you make the best flooring decisions. For example, the Stainmaster Carpet website has a variety of design tools you can use; click here to take a look.
A new coat of paint can do wonders for a bedroom! If your current room is looking a little tired, why not make a change and pick a different colour to what you ordinarily would? A popular trend right now is having one feature wall a brighter or darker colour and the other walls a plain white or off-white. This serves to open up the room and will make it more vibrant and livable.
3. Update Furniture and Lighting
Is there a particular style, theme or era you are aiming for with your bedroom? Why not purchase some new pieces of furniture to go along with the theme and make it seem more complete? There are plenty of fantastic and innovative furniture stores and antique shops where there are many bargains to be found. Lighting is another key aspect of any chic bedroom. Pick lighting that will complement your room’s décor and is suitable for how often you are in the room. Bulb type and whether you prefer ceiling lights or lamps need to also be considered before purchasing. Get all lighting installed by a professional electrician.
Beautiful new bedding is the perfect accompaniment to your brand new chic bedroom. Even if you can’t afford a complete refurbishment, new bedding will make you feel good as new! Crisp white bedding also elevates your room immeasurably, making it look chic and minimal. Make sure you get a few throw pillows in a contrasting colour to really make the bedding stand out.
Creating a chic bedroom can take a long time and be quite expensive, but the result of it all is a beautiful, chic bedroom you will enjoy for many years to come. By focusing on the key areas of your flooring, bedding, paint, and furniture, you can create a consistent and modern look in your bedroom. What are your tips for creating a chic bedroom?
Leave them in the comments below!
Still stranded in Bali with closest re-booked flight being Friday (Fingers crossed!) I might as well do some blogging
While in Bali, myself and my guest ( My Mum) were lucky enough to be invited to experience the ilLido Bali Italian Restaurant in the trendy Seminyak district. I wasn’t aware of Bali bearings – its a bit hard to figure this out when you go on forums and tripadvisor as people have different opinions of places. Where we stayed in Fairmont Sanur, it was more quiet and was a more tranquil beach front with less people, lights and Westernisation in a way.
Most of the top rated restaurants are located in Seminyak. It is no different for ilLido Bali. The popular venue where ilLido Bail is now located used to be taken up by a French and Mediterranian restaurant Warisan. Pierre (one of the managers) mentioned that many still call up to book Warisan and they have to explain that it is now a new restaurant. Somehow I think that it won’t take long for everyone to fall in love with ilLido and embrace this amazing new addition to the Bali dining culture.
The courtyard and the venue is beautiful. We attended for dinner so all the candles in the garden made the whole setting very intimate and relaxing. The staff were courteous and professional and we were immediately greeted by Pierre and Saurab who had relocated to Bali from Singapore and Dubai respectively to look after ilLido Bali. Having spent some time at ilLido group overseas, the duo have a breadth of experience to offer to this new Seminyak gem.
Upon not being able to decide what to order as it all looked so enticing, we decided to try the very reasonably priced Tasting menu. At around 50,000 Rupiah, which translates to roughly $52-53 AUD per person, includes 6x courses and desserts. In Sydney, you can easily spend up to $150 per person on a meal like this one, without dessert/coffees and drinks.
The dishes on the night included:
Grilled Octopus with Nduja (5 stars)
Grilled Asparagus with Beetroot, Garlic and Almonds
Linguine with Crab and Mascarpone (5 stars)
Ricotta Cheese Tortelli with Amatriciana
Duck Leg Confit with Smoked Breast (5 stars)
Snapper with Fennel and Beetroot
White wine and Chianti
A tasting plate of fantastic desserts – the Pannacotta is divine.
Pannacotta and Coulant with Chocolate Gelato
I have tagged the dishes I would recommend as favourites with ’5 stars’, however, I would recommend all items on that tasting menu and would order it all again.
I don’t usually eat duck but the Duck Leg Confit with Smoked Breast was incredibly delicious. There were a lot of flavours to the meat, but not overpowering and with enough of a softness and crisp.
Snapper with Fennel and Duck Leg Confit with Smoked Breast
The Linguine with Crab had the most delicious light sauce with crab meat, both delicate and incredibly flavoursome.
My mum also enjoyed the Grilled Asparagus with Beetroot. This dish would suit even those who are not massive fans of beetroot because the asparagus is placed on a bed of sauce which is rich with beetroot puree, so it is more of a dressing rather than the full vegetable.
Grilled Octopus with Nduja and Asparagus with Beetroot
For restaurant bookings go directly to ilLido Bali Website
Menu can be found on there also, just click on MENU section of the website and then scroll down below the pretty dish pictures to click on the PDF links to download. (That part of the website is a bit tricky).
11:30AM TO MIDNIGHT
Jalan Raya Kerobokan No 38
Banjar Taman, Kuta
Bali 80361, Indonesia
Parking is available
+62 361 731175
The dress I wore out to dinner is by Boohoo Australia.
Details of the Ida Beaded Maxi Dress in Black
Photos taken on location at Fairmont Sanur Resort, Sanur Beach, Bali.
Photography by Theo Widharto (one of the two cool photographers I had a chance to do photoshoots with in Bali)
Theo’s work can be seen on his website or on Instagram.
I must be very lucky but the work of photographers I met in Bali is just superb!
Additional reviews on ilLido Bali:
If you’re thinking of your next travel destination for a getaway, have a think about receiving a premium spa treatment with luxurious Parisian range of skincare products form La Biosthetique at an exclusive island resort with a cool name.
Lizard Island had officially reopened its doors to guests this month. The Essentia Day Spa is going to be providing signature treatments for guests and as there is only one resort on the island, you can completely relax in the tranquility of North Queensland tropics and enjoy all the Day spa has to offer.
Lizard Island Paradise
A bit of history on Lizard Island -
It was named Lizard Island by captain Cook because lots of large lizards aka iguanas were spotted living on this remote piece of land in the Pacific Ocean.
Due to cyclone damage earlier this year the resort had to be rebuilt and fixed up. A multi million dollar investment went into the island to make it pristine, beautiful and superbly luxurious again. With all that work, Lizard Island is set to reclaim its position as one of the World’s leading premium resort.
Now although I haven’t been to the resort yet, I have been able to try out the signature spa treatment at the Sydney HQ for La Biosthetique – Bauhaus Hair in Waterloo.
Bauhaus Hair: Entry, Lobby and Salon
This treatment is now available at Essentia, the island spa. It’s a 2 hour treatment that lets your tension melt away and gives your body a full nourishment and relaxation.
The treatment I had was a full body exfoliation and a customised facial using La Biosthetique products inspired by a Nobel Prize discovery in age management.
Bauhaus Hair is a great salon. I’ve walked passed a few times but didn’t realise how big it was on the inside. It’s mainly a hair salon but they also do body and facial treatments.
For the first time in my life I was going through a La Biosthetique skin test with special colourful serums which upon wiping the side of my jaw and nose, could tell me which type of skin I had – oily vs dry, dehydrated or normal. It turns out I have dehydrated skin, so I’ll be extra careful from now on with nourishing my body with enough water during the day and then also using skincare products to moisturise my skin really well.
La Biosthetique Skin Testing
Sarah, who was my beauty and spa therapist, walked me through the treatment after doing the skin consultation.
The scrub was extremely gentle and the wrap relaxed me so much I wanted to fall asleep immediately. Talk about complete relaxation!
When I was all wrapped up and cozy Sarah started the facial.
La Biosthetique Essentia Spa Brushes
I loved it so much and my skin is still glowing with radiance from all the beautiful products that were put on my skin. The whole procedure starts with a ritualistic brush massage which welcomes you to the signature treatment at the spa and helps release any tension. It’s easy to continue chatting away, but after the soft bristles started to swirl around my complexion, all I wanted to do was be quite and very still and just enjoy the experience.
My favourite part was the masque that was applied and also I think vitamin capsules! Sarah explained to me that the vitamin capsules were like multivitamins for your skin. To be used especially in times of stress or lack of rest. Just like our body, our skin needs nourishment and this treatment surely delivers all the goodness in one little capsule, like a serum, but in a little silicon pill.
I might do a cheeky getaway to Lizard Island soon just to experience the spa treatments in this amazing resort, since I am already sold on the treatments!
Lizard Island Bookings
More on Essentia Spa
La Biosthetique Products
Australia, get ready to hotel it up!
The new Hotel Tonight – fresh out of San Francisco, has officially launched in Sydney.
I ended up at Radisson Blu on Tuesday night (random right?) after the official launch event at a ‘secret’ hotel location. The experience was SPONTANEOUS. The whole idea behind the Hotel Tonight APP is PLAN LESS< LIVE MORE.
And that is exactly what happened – completely unplanned, I was checking into a hotel room at 10.30 at night on a tuesday. Yay room service!
The evening of Tuesday night we got invited to a secret hotel at a secret location with a secret dinner (you get the idea, it was secret! And that is what made it extra fun!)
I got my mystery hat on and came along for the ride!
We got cocktails and dinner – PLAN LESS. TASTE MORE.
We got a preview of what it’s like to be booking though the Hotel Tonight App on the night. PLAN LESS. SURF MORE.
And at the end of the night we got to spin a wheel of fortune and I WON a Free night’s stay at Radisson Blu. Completely random! We even received a very thoughtful overnight bag that had all the ‘essentials’ in order to be spontaneous.
Room service rocks!
It takes less than 10 seconds in most instances to be booked into a hotel room of your choice. The choices are only the top luxury hotels in your location, and you don’t get too many ( I think we were told around 15 hotels per night will be available in your city of choice so that you only get the top deals).
The value you save on hotels can be up to 70% off the original price per night and the longer you wait the better the deal gets.
Shhh, insider tip – after 3pm each day, the deals get better!
More on the official launch here from Techly
The app is completely free to download so go nuts and live spontaneously – go on you need a bit of fun in your life!