Wednesday, September 28, 2011

† The City of Prague Picture Story

Dear readers,

I just had a look at my blog and realized that I have totally missed out on telling you about a wonderful trip I have taken recently! I caught up with my darling American friend in Prague and we had the most wonderful time there (she looks a lot like Jennifer Love Hewitt by the way but I am not allowed to show her to you - she's shy!).
The sun was shining brightly every day and we were assured that this was a special occurrence - so we felt even more blessed to experience this town from its most gorgeous side :-)

Here are some of our views, hope you enjoy and feel inspired to visit Eastern Europe, too. I can't believe I've never been there before:

above 2: this is the view from the central tower overlooking the city center. Underneath the big place you see on the first picture is actually an amazing underground museum on the history of Prague. They found practically the entire old town way below the ground level you see today. I highly recommend anyone visiting the city to go have a look - it's way more exciting and vibrant than you might think! I am still fascinated by this experience, they've done a marvelous job down there!!

 above 3: these pictures you get to take just by doing some sightseeing - amazing! 

above: this is one of the many characteristic café's in Prague. The restaurants are typically underground - just like it used to be many centuries ago around there.

above 2: the old castle and some nuns making a photo shoot on the stairway! They acted just like ordinary tourists - all excited and jittery, too cute!!

above 2: my outfits were convenient but with an ongoing theme - I chose dark red/burgundy colors for day and night time and wore big dark sunglasses to shield from the sun, while still remaining feminine in my overall appearance and not too bulky. This is how I imagine an Eastern European women to be like! 
(haha, note the bike riding guy in the background - wonder what he is thinking ;] )

My make-up brand of choice was my beauty evergreen pick Rouge Bunny Rouge. As their story takes place at an enchanted garden in Russia (or so I believe) I thought their products would make the perfect match for my journey to Prague. I took my decadent duos with me, my blush sticks, and many more items! Check out my previous posts on the brand for reviews. 

Have you ever been somewhere new and returned totally blown-away by this unexpected direct hit?! Tell me all about it, where are your most favorite locations, girls? 

Much love to you,
Sam xx

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Italian Spirit ~ ~ ~

Hello my fellow travelers,

where have you been this summer? I've been in Bella Italia by the sea ~ ~ ~ ~ what a wonderful August it was but full of work, too. I am open to new possibilities when it comes to my professional career. This last month was a wonderful time to reflect on many questions I've had and working my hardest on all kinds of projects while spending a good deal on the sunny side of life, too :-)

I haven't bought many products last month, I will need to think of new posts soon. Maybe go shopping... ;-)

Love you all, let's stay in touch! 
ur gypsy xx

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Next Stop - Bella Italia!

Hi folks,

I am by far the worst job hunter I have ever come across... instead of working my ass off to earn a proper living I am taking advantage of the situation and travel all over the world to meet with friends :-) I am spending the entire August on Italy's sunny coast with a friend I worked with in my former job!! Oh well, she wants to help me out with work-related things but there will be a lot of fun and sightseeing in the meantime :-)

Beauty Confessions:
There is one urgent question I have to ask you: Is this too much blue even for a gypsy like me?!
Honestly, I think so! This outfit won't be making it into my suitcase - what was I thinking wearing that??

top: Victoria's Secret cami
skirt: Old Navy
shoes: Tamaris (second hand)
clutch: Lucky Brand (gift)
bag: no name (gift)

Girls (& boys if there are any), I have another beauty confession to make: I am not wearing much make-up anymore and I quite like my effortless look even though I miss my coral summer lips and my dark smokey eyes at times... but since I have turned to organic skincare and groceries I am feeling much more comfortable in my own skin. Something has changed, I can't really put my hands on it, yet. It could be multiple reasons: simply me growing up, or the awareness of nourishing the self, or the many nutrients of natural products...

This is how I look on most days now, except my nails are much stronger and longer (took this pic 2 months ago and trimmed the nails prior to guitar lessons):

Do you have any beauty confessions to make? This is the place for sharing them! :)

Lots of love, sunshine, & happiness
ur Sam xx

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer Vacation Update!

Hello dear readers,

I've managed to LET GO and finally arrived home! There's been so much going on but I am trying to wrap it all up in a few words for you.

I've done the most amazing road trip with my old friend (we were class mates back in the days) in a golden car - it turned out the colour's called "champagne" but it appears very gangster ;) I can't show you a picture of our gold nugget, though, cause no single pic that we've shot does this amazing car justice... (yes, I'm just a little bit of a perfectionist). We discovered the beautiful French countryside and got to know the lovely people of France. We felt so free and in touch with life, it was awesome!! 
When we finished our trip I took the chance to visit my family and I spent some nice quality time with them. Then... I was invited to a music festival by friends I know from my former jobs at radio stations. It reminded me of how much I LOVE MUSIC - great tunes are as essential as breathing to me! After returning home for a couple of days I took off AGAIN to meet a dear friend from the US in Poland. It was so wonderful to reconnect with her - she is such a special human being and we discovered Krakow together with so much joy!

Hope you like the little impressions I prepared for you below :-)

I'm glad to be back to blogging, though :) ha ha! What have you been up to?!

Happy to hear from you,
Sam xx

Friday, May 20, 2011

Vacation Time GIVEAWAY!! Get Joop, Benefit, & Rouge Bunny Rouge Goodies - CLOSED!

Hello my dears,

I am preparing for the wedding party on Saturday and 2 days after I am taking off to a roadtrip with my dear lady friend through France!! My friend is going to move to Vancouver, so we wanna relax, chat, and see new things for a fortnight before we won't see each other much.We bought a matt golden Opel, so if you live in France and see us, talk to us!! Would make me happy to meet you :-)

For the time I am on my way I am holding a sweet little GiveAWay for your own sunny vacation:

(sorry for the silly basket but I initially prepared this gift for Easter but actually thought that it would be a better idea to present the collection during my travels)

There're travel-sized shower gel and body lotion by Joop in the package as well as
Benefit's Pocket Pal (contains the cheek & lip stain Benetint and a sheer lip gloss in one convenient wand), a mini version of the B-Spot fragrance, and sample of the Depuffing Action Eye-Gel that worked great for my friend who I am going on vacation with (she received the full-sized package from me as a present a while ago and she loved it very much - or so she said to me, ha ha!).
Last but not least I enclosed a brand new Rouge Bunny Rouge eyeshadow When Birds Are Singing for you to try as I am presenting this brand so often. I chose a sheer natural shade called gracious arasari that everyone can wear, no matter what skin, eye, or hair colour.

So, with these 6 items I hope you're gonna be all packed up for your own wonderful journey!

How to participate:
First of all, everyone from all parts of the world is welcome to join!!
Just follow my blog via google friend connect and leave me a comment saying that you would like to take part in my giveway.
I hope you tell me also which topics you would like to have covered in the future or what else you would like to find on my blog.
Enter preferably until the 5th of June, although it may take a little longer for me to return home.

What are your vacation must-haves? Which items always make it into your travel bags?

Happy participating and please tell your friends on facebook, twitter, etc... about this!
I hope to find many entries when I come back!!

Much love,
blk_gypsy Sam xx

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Silk Aether Long-Lasting Cream Eye Shadows by Rouge Bunny Rouge & Benefit Creaseless Cream Eye-Shadows/Liners

Dear readers,

how are you doing today? I am soaking up every sunray that touches my skin and in my opinion this season could last forever!

This week-end I received an enchanted package by Nadin who promotes my favorite high-end make-up brand Rouge Bunny Rouge. She kindly sent me two shades, namely atlas swallowtail (no. 56) and brocade skipper (no. 57), of the new Silk Aether long-lasting cream eye shadows to try along with a beautiful letter regarding the latest beauty news: RBR is going to launch a new look next month!
btw: My neat b&w agenda on the right helps to open up the letter in style ;-)

Needless to say, I wore these cream eye-shadows for the last couple of days and this is how they look like:

on the left side: atlas swallowtail (no. 56) is described on the webpage as: "Satin wash of nude taupe with pewter reflections; buildable to darker, more opaque and metallic greyish hue of the same colour" which also is a very precise statement. I tried how buildable the colours were by putting on a small layer first and after drying "topping it up" for a slightly more dramatic look. The layers melted together despite the time that elapsed between the applications.

on the left side: brocade skipper (no. 57) is described on the webpage as: "Satin wash of blush champagne cream; buildable to darker, more opaque and metallic hue of the same colour" which I would totally agree upon. It gives the eye-lid a subtle note and can be used as a base shadow or for women that prefer a very natural "just there" look for an enhanced glowing effect.

my thoughts:
The cream-eye shadows are really smooth and fool-proof to apply. These shades are excellent for women who are aiming at putting emphasis on their appearance and radiance rather than conspicuous make-up colours and looks. I think this is a motto that runs through the entire RBR range. You can't overdo(se) on any shade as they act as a natural enhancement of the female moods and shapes as opposed to wearing a mask. This is what I love about this brand beside not being an organic brand which is the only wish I still have that comes into my mind. My skin is coping with every single product extremely well, though, and the formula contains many rare natural goodies as well.

If, however, you are looking for more colourful options I am recommending the nostalgic-looking Benefit creaseless cream shadows/liners. You can have a quick look at them in this post, too. My favourites are skinny jeans, strut, stiletto, and birthday suit. The cream eye-shadows work very well when you put them on with the talent brush by Benefit but you gotta be careful to close the lit very carefully after each use or they dry out for good... this is not an organic brand, too, of course. So, I think I would switch completely to RBR if they released equivalent shades in their Silk Aether section.

Please stay tuned for my next post this week as I am holding a GiveAWay just for you, guys, while I am AWay doing a trip through ever-beautiful France :-)

Do you prefer cream eye-shadows or powder eye-shadows? Please tell me as I am curious to know!!

Much love,
ur Sam xx

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Liebster Blog Award Nomination!!

Hello lovelies,

I went online to stalk some of your blogs before going to bed and what I found apart from your beautiful entries was - to my surprise - that the lovely Vintage Makeup girl has nominated me for the Liebster Blog award!!

The Liebster Award is designed to bring well deserved additional recognition to those bloggers with less than 300 followers.  If you receive the award you link back to the blogger that nominated you and nominate 3 more blogs. 

I am extremely happy and grateful to have received this award! My 3 nominations are:

1. Anne-Marie-Bardot: Marisa has a very interesting writing style and puts a lot of effort into every post that she creates. She's a very sweet gal, too, so follow her if hadn't had the chance, yet!

2. Supreme Living: Supergirl is just the way her name claims to be: she writes every post in two languages, so that every reader can understand the workings of her beautiful mind. She blogs on make-up, fashion, and everything else a true super girl loves!

3. Alyssa's Cooking Adventures: Alyssa runs a wonderful blog on delicious & healthy meals - preferably with groceries bought at Trader Joe's. Her recipes are easy to make and perfect for a low-budged, yet high quality kitchen!

Please find out about other blogs that I love in this post.

Happy Easter, everyone!! Have you found all your chocolate Easter eggs? - I luckily did ;)
Love, Sam xx

Friday, April 22, 2011

Spring Shower - Going Green with Màdara Mint Shower Gel & Aveda Be Curley Shampoo

Hello beauties,

I hope you had a very sunny and lovely Good Friday!! I met up with friends for a fun barbecue at the waterfront. Fantastic people and the awesome weather just make me wanna jump :-)
To celebrate spring I am writing about my favorite eco-friendly shower products for the season:

AVEDA Be Curley Shampoo with wheat protein is designed to enhance curls. They say on the package that they achieve that effect because "wheat protein and organic aloe blend expands when hair is wet and retracts when dry to enhance curl or wave". My hair is naturally wavy when I don't comb it whilst still moist after a shower but wait until the waves have dried. If I put my wet hair into a bun, however, I get full-on curls when I release them once they've dried! I have three kinds of hair at once :-) For spring I prefer a slight to medium romantic wave and I do feel a difference using this shampoo as my curls get more bouncy ;) AVEDA uses preservatives to make the product last for up to 24 months after opening but IMO they make up for it by using "certified organic lime, lemon, bergamot, orange and other pure plant and flower essences" in their formula. Also, I like the convenience of not feeling rushed to empty the bottle any time soon as a small amount goes a long way. The foaming is sufficient for covering even long hair has a very pleasant natural scent. The good quality of this product justifies the price tag for me, which says $21.

MÁDARA is a young ECOCERT certified brand from Latvia that uses 80% of their ingredients from organic produce and 99% of natural substances to make this mild Mint Shower Gel. Baltic algae extract replenishes the skin and fresh peppermint gives a natural refreshing scent that really fits perfectly to a sunny morning shower! They have very cute skin products, too. I got samples of the deep moisture cream & fluid and the regenerating night cream but haven't tried them, yet. They have jojoba, rose, and avocado oil amongst other goodies in them, so they won't remain untouched for long!

I am so happy with these additions to my morning routine :)

What are your plans for Easter? Isn't it nice to wake up to the rising sun and knowing you're gonna have four days off?!

It's time to celebrate, guys!! I started with doing my own pre-barbecue baking:

Love, Sam xx

P.S.: Just read that Gwyneth Paltrow recommends Màdara in her latest post on GOOP - enjoy reading her other skincare suggestions, too! Bye xx

Thursday, March 31, 2011

5 Day Detox - Like Chocolate for Women & GOOP

Detox ladies: my fruit shelf during the cleanse (love the dragon fruit and pomegranate!)

Dear readers,

spring is finally arriving and I am ready to get rid of all the accumulated weight - inside and out - that I have piled up over the last couple of months. I sensed that when you are in physically or mentally extreme situations your body can sense what makes it run at an even lower pace and warns you. This has happened to me in terms of my eating and drinking habits. When I ate too much or was munching on snack foods my mind would slow down and I got disturbed from working on my tasks. Plus, I felt that I was thinking constantly about food which made me really wonder what I did wrong in terms of my eating habits.
In search for the answer to my question I became a big advocate of Cyndi O'Meara who dedicated her life to nutrition and well-being on a basis of science and common-sense. I am gonna tell you more about her books and the Healthy Living Program & Club in upcoming posts. She contributed the meal plans to an e-book by Kim Morrison & Fleur Whelligan called Like Chocolate for Women, which is basically an 28 day program for female self-care. It includes decluttering, aroma therapy, and meal planning. The first 5 days consisted of a detox phase that was so easy to handle that even I could do it. In fact, I got inspired to do a little self-experiment: At each night of the detox I added a food group that I was concerned of causing some of my most prevalent symptoms: fatigue, flatulence, increased mucus, and skin problems. Those foods on my black list were: 1. wheat/gluten products, 2. dairy/cow products, 3. processed foods (e.g. peanut butter), 4. chocolates/sweets.

I printed out the pages of the e-book and had it bound in a stationary to make it look neat.

The basic detox consisted of juicing or blending raw fruits & vegetables as well as mixing in eggs, flax-seed oil, barley powder, and drinking herbal teas and water. Sticking to only these foods/drinks made me feel very at ease and surprisingly satisfied. I did not even crave any sweets like I usually do!

However, I am a true coffee addict and the first couple of days my mind was loaded with images of hot steamy delicious coffee cups! I am off coffee for more than a week now and I haven't started again, yet, which is a big miracle to me. Needless to say I did not need to test my coffee addiction as it is one of my most apparent vices!
I experienced the biggest side-effects with wheat and dairy, which is a very prevalent phenomenon in our Western society. I could actually feel those nasty symptoms mentioned above reoccurring after eating white bread and even after having natural plain organic yogurt. I guess this is because we grew up eating these foods (mostly in a processed form) every single day and after decades of doing so our bodies just have had enough. Plus, I am a blood type O and according to Dr. Peter D'Adamo I should stick to a hunter & gatherer diet full of: fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, eggs, and meat while avoiding grains and milk products. Well, there's much debate as to whether Peter D'Adamo is just a charlatan or a real scientist but in my case the reactions of my moaning gastric system provided a confirmation of his claims. Chocolate did not cause me any problems as long as I ate dark chocolate with no or little added milk but, in general, eating any kind of sweets made me wanna crave more sweets and other foods which lead to an abrupt ending of my personalized detox phase (that was extended anyway lasting for an entire week due to my vast experimenting).
I must say that even though I did a lot of "cheating" at night holding my little food group self-study, I did feel weaker than usual. I went to a lot of ballet classes, too, and I guess to keep energy levels up I just need to include meat/fish, nuts (best directly from the shell) and whole grains into my diet. However, I definitely learned that less is more and that I never want to get back to my old ways (which were: counteracting sugar-lows with coffee boosters) that made me addicted to sweets and coffee. This eating regime was a burden to my body and I am determined to change this state of affairs, especially after experiencing the unpleasant relapse following the sugar trial. I do struggle with self-discipline in all kinds of areas in life and that is why this journey is going to become a long ongoing tough task but I just keep telling myself that there is no going back!!

Meanwhile, I gather as much information on health (NOT weight loss) as possible, preferably from the Australian nutritionist Cyndi O'Meara. For those of you interested in her knowledge, you can visit her web-page: There's plenty to find out, even without spending a single dollar, simply by reading through the news archive, following her on facebook, or subscribing to the newsletter!

A great free detox program is available on Gwyneth Paltrow's awesome blog Goop. This woman is in the middle of everything, she is a true achiever and it is fun following her sophisticated weekly blog entries. She does detox regularly, so she posted her detox regime made up by the LA detox specialist Alejandro Junger. For each recipe you can download a printable version. Enjoy guys!

This video below is a little thank you for everyone who kept following me through my busy times:
I am as silly as always but I hope you get what I meant to say anyhow!
Much love from your gypsy, blk that is ;) xx

Do you use the spring for detox or fasting? This was my first try, I would love to learn about your experiences and maybe get some more good advices!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Exercise Programs - Restoring My Body Image

Hello my dears,

how are you doing? I hope great! Today I am writing about exercise as it is giving me much strength lately - enhancing my body and soul. At the beginning of this year I had the chance to subscribe to a ballet course at a nice dancing studio. It's a flatrate that enables me to take lessons whenever I have 90 mins to spare. I am hardly ever going out but going to my ballet classes instead. And I must say: I feel like a whole new me - or to be more precise - I remember how well I used to feel in my body! From the age of 5 I started dancing ballet and I was very good until I quit when I became a rebellious teenager. However, I started to miss my training when I was 17 years old, so I started again. From then on I had an on-off-relationship with exercise due to my extensive traveling. Whenever I was abroad I had to sign out of my classes. Reading my books all day made this condition worse and slowly but surely my muscles became weak and caused a bad posture. Ballet is my medicine and I am so grateful to have it back!!

This is a picture of my ruby red pointers. I dyed them myself. Too bad I emptied the bucket with the red colour into the toilet... for weeks it looked like I slaughtered someone in my bathroom, dough!

I also have some other equipment that I use only sporadically. I am following fitness videos at times (for example, Jillian Michaels - 30 Day Shred) but in general I much rather go for a run outside.

Another way to exercise is Power Plate. I have a studio right in my neighbourhood, so when I am too lazy to go anywhere I stop by this studio for a personal training on the vibrating plate. Just 30 mins are highly efficient because the plate stimulates the inner muscles, too, how perfect!

Seriously, without my ballet I am not the whole me! I'm having as much stress as ever but my moods are much more even and I enjoy moving cause I start feeling my body again! This is a cheer for exercise :-)

What about you?! What is your favourite sports that you can't live without? Or do you loathe exercise?

Happy working out,
your Sam xx

Extra Bit: ~The perfect Sit-Up~

A couple of months ago I was hit by a car (yeah, that wasn't too good...) and because of this accident my pelvis was multi-dimensionally shifted, so I had to see a physio therapist for a long time. I am fixed now, don't worry!! My "trainer" was a lovely lady who showed me how to do the perfect sit-up for strength and definition:
The important thing most other fitness coaches forget to advice their clients is to push the heels on the ground while lifting the torso! Also, your lower back needs to be pressed to the mat at all times and your pelvic floor muscle needs to be tight, too. Count until 8 before you let down and lay down again. Repeat this procedure 15 times and if you really want to make a difference, do the sides as well (same technique, just left to the side). This way, your sit-up is highly efficient!
I did this every night for a couple of weeks and I felt amazing. I need to start that routine again!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Blog Lovin' - My Most Influential Bloggers

Hello fellow bloggers,

being a true gypsy means to be a bit unconventional at times. I knew it would be like this when I started my blog cause there is an unpredictable side to my life. Events evolve right in front of my eyes and I need to go with them as they come, that's just the road a gypsy's gotta go...
I deeply apologize for my relatively absence all this while. I know that I am still new to the blogging world and I should've been able to speak to you more frequently but my life turned out to be more than hectic and this won't change too soon. Many of you lovelies make up the reasons why I still try to write as often as possible, so I'd like to dedicate this post to you guys.

Tali was the first blogger that I got to know through the world wide web. Her ongoing love for make-up and all things beautiful made me get in touch with this community. When I first started out she recommended my blog to her followers which made my heart melt!

Supergirl is a true super girl! Her comments brighten up my days and on her blog she has very innovative ideas. She always takes the time to write her posts bilingual, that is so great!
Roshas is a very beautiful and cute person! I love her personality and her weight loss tips helped me out big time. I'm gonna write a post on my eating regime and how important optimism is in order to change bad habits. That is totally inspired by her suggestions!

is such a doll! She has an absolutely adorable style and works out every day by herself to keep fit and healthy. I think she's gonna be a total role model for a lot of young women. Keep on going, hon!

Miranda is a supermodel with a twist: she is very modest and believes that everybody is beautiful and precious. She knows no exception from this rule and speaks openly to anyone. Her health blog is an example of how many great people share their wisdoms with others.

Replica is a wonderful blogger! I love her preference for brands that are not commonly known but of very high-quality such as RBR or Snowberry. She always takes pictures of the ingredients list, I could hug her for doing that :) She is the first person I ever talked to on a blog and asked for advice (just before Tali)!
Tina is a very mature young woman from Greece. I adore her for always finding the right words and I can tell that she is a 100% honest in every word she says. She deserves all the attention that she is getting!

Mushine has a wonderful innovative blog. She crafts so many things that it is delightful to see what she comes up with. She is beautiful inside and out and this shows in everything she does!
Modesty Brown is a chemist and along with her scientific background she is very kind to everyone who comments or poses questions to her. You can really rely on her which is great!

Grace has a lovely blog and her flawless skin has been praised by famous people like Edward Bess! I like to read through her posts, old and new!
"Fantastic" :) I hardly ever seen a beautiful woman such as this one and her blog is a retreat! She is a model and knows to have little time on her hands but when she does post it's delightful!

.... the list goes on!

These wonderful girls are just a few!! I met many more since I started 6 months ago and I only made the most positive experiences! I thank you all for the warm words and attention that I have received!

I have new ideas for upcoming posts, mostly on health and exercise rather than make-up as my life is changing substantially at the moment. I am also gonna have a blog sale coming up, too.
So, please bear with me to make this a fun place to hang out! Without you, guys, this is just another page in the endless www. universe. Let's fill this place with light and laughter :-)

So long,
ur gypsy Sam xx