Last week, as I was trying on a pile of winter sale jerseys, I was privy to the chit-chat of two tweenage girls one cubicle over. From the sizes of clothing they discussed, I gathered they were around 11 years old. For a while, they giggled delightedly while they taught each other ‘model poses’ that they were evidently admiring in the mirrors, but their mirth turned sour when one of the girls decided she looked fat in whatever item she had tried on. “I could wear it if I sucked my tummy in the whole time,” the girl told her friend. “Don’t worry,” her friend consoled her, as the first girl got close to tears, “At least you don’t look like <some other little girl they knew>.”
I walked out of the store with a heart of lead. These girls weren’t yet women, and already they were wishing their bodies different, programmed with self-loathing and judgment of themselves and their peers.
How can we protect our kids from these harmful messages from so young?
The answer is, I don’t think we can. What we can do, is teach them to recognize the messages they’re being pummelled with, and attempt to counterbalance all of the negativity with messages about loving their bodies and appreciating the beautiful differences between all of us.
One such positive message is Steven Universe, an animated series now premiering on the Cartoon Network, in partnership with the Dove Self-Esteem Project. The Emmy-nominated series revolves around Steven, the “little brother” to a team of magical aliens —the Crystal Gems—who defend the planet Earth. The cartoon aims to build body confidence in young people, by leveraging research that has shown that children’s media can be a powerful source of influence on young viewers’ perspective of their body image and emotional intelligence.
Check out this cute clip for a delightful taster:
Sure, maybe the show is geared at young people, but I don’t know about you – I could always use a little extra body positivity in my life, and I don’t think you can ever get too old for cartoons. So pull up a comfy seat, pour a bowl of cereal, and tune into the Cartoon Network for a bit of fun with a beautiful message!
My job allows me to work from home for much of it, which, as you can imagine, has its perks. While I can’t say that I work in my pyjamas every day (although, let’s be real, that has happened on the odd occasion), I take my shlumphy clothes pretty seriously, and am usually pretty mortified if the doorbell goes and anybody actually has to see me dressed like this.
What it does mean is that when I have meetings, more often than not I like to have a bit of fun with what I wear. So when Superbalist asked me to put together a list of work-ready staples, I was more than ready for the challenge – and rest assured you aren’t going to see any pant-suits or polyester here!
Here are 3 of my must-have items to tackle a work week in style.
I love how this gorgeous piece ticks all the work professionalism boxes, while still hinting at a bit of fun and character with the harness feature. A trusty black blouse is the very definition of a wardrobe staple and can be paired with pretty much anything from comfy jeans for a casual day, to smart slacks or a pencil skirt for a more formal affair. Yes, yes, and yes please.
The plus size harness detail blouse by Missguided costs R449 and is available in sizes 16 – 24.
A good jumpsuit is almost as good as a dress in my books – I love that you can put one thing on and your outfit is DONE. None of that faffing about with co-ordinating and all that. Jumpsuits have been super on trend for a while now, and are so comfy that you might as well be working at home in your pyjamas!
The plus size jersey wrap plunge jumpsuit by Missguided is R599, and available in sizes 16 – 24.
Obviously I’m going to leave the best ’til last. Nothing tickles my pickle quite like a dress does. I’m totally smitten with the one below – to me it’s the perfect combo of gorgeous design, a comfy cut and versatility – this baby is going to take you safely from the office right into date night without breaking a sweat.
The plus size slinky kimono dress by Missguided is currently on sale for R419, and is available in sizes 16 – 24.
Love these looks? Download the Superbalist app for Android or iOS and if you’re a first-time buyer you’ll get R250 off any purchase of R600 or more!
Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Superbalist. All opinions are my own.
Hi readers! I am slowly emerging from the wedding planning haze and returning to regular life (whatever that is). I know I haven’t posted anything proper about the wedding yet (although you can get a sneak peek on Instagram here), but that will come, I promise!
I’m going to go right ahead and put the cart before the horse, and share with you about one of our best wedding gifts – a brand-spanking-new Sapience Top Loader with Smart Inverter washing machine from LG for me to review! (Thanks LG, your timing for this campaign was pretty great 😉 )
My previous machine had been a trusty LG Fuzzy Logik that had served me well for many, many years, so I already had a pretty good opinion about the brand’s reliability and what an LG machine could offer, but let’s just say I was blown away by how far the technology has come. Plus it’s really pretty and shiny and new – I mean, just look at it!
Energy Saving with Smart Inverter Control
Living at the centre of the Cape Town drought, water consumption is at the absolute forefront of my mind. As a family of 3 we’ve made a great effort to cut down the amount of laundry we have to do, and with the Sapience I’m thrilled to be able to do what washing we have to far more efficiently. The machine is available in 13, 15, and 17kg sizes, and with the 15kg machine that we opted for I am able to do 2-weeks worth of laundry (including sheets and towels) in one load – significantly cutting down the number of loads I have to do. I love that I am able to monitor and control exactly how much water the machine uses with the easy-to-use ‘water level’ settings display. (And it goes without saying that we save and re-use all grey water wherever possible!)
The Smart Inverter functionality is the absolute cherry on the top. What these fancy words mean is that the machine adjusts its power consumption to the exact amount required – meaning it figures out how much you need to wash and doesn’t draw unneeded power. They claim a 36% energy saving, which is not just great for your pocket, but the environment too!
Smart Motion for optimized washing by fabric type
The Smart Motion capability of this machine means that you can customise what kind of wash your load gets based on what it is that you’re washing. Obviously you would want a load of towels and sheets to be treated very differently to your delicate frocks load! With the LG Smart Inverter it’s as easy as programming your wash by fabric type. You can pick between normal, wool, duvet and silent, and the machine will combine the correct motions for the best care and treatment of your load.
Turbo Drum™ removes even the toughest dirt
Another of the defining characteristics of this machine is that the drum rotates. This Turbo Drum functionality gives the best possible wash to your grubby goodies by creating a strong water stream via rotating the drum and pulsator in opposite directions. More fancy words, but what you need to know is that this machine doesn’t mess around – even the grungiest of stuff will come out clean (trust me, I wash my boys’ sweat-soaked, mud-splashed kit after they do motocross). The Auto Pre Wash function, which lets the clothes soak while agitating them every two minutes before your regular was, is also really great for soiled loads.
One of the most impressive things for me – and the sure sign of a good buy – is the fact that the machine comes with a 10-year-warranty. I feel like that really is a sign of a company backing the claims that they make – you really can’t go wrong! Other things I really like are the soft-close lid (it just makes you feel fancy, ok?) and the sweet little tune it sings you when your load is done!
I know I’ve been a terribly bad blogger of late, but I made some time this morning to share some of my favourite finds of late.
One always thinks of their teen years as the time that our bodies go through lots of changes, but I’ve been surprised to find out how much things change when you hit the big 3-0. It’s like overnight I needed glasses, a second shot of espresso in my coffee, and to lavish more attention on my skin. I was sent some Healing Earth products to trial and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect – these gentle, luxurious, natural products have been just what my thirsty, thirsty epidermis has needed to feel happy and healthy. The products are pure and organic, full of aromatherapy oils and plant extracts, and boasting anti-oxidant qualities. I’ve been using the Pinotage Cleansing Cream, which leaves my skin feeling supple and pampered, and a quick wipe of the toner adds a fresh zing to my routine. With some reluctance I’ve had to share my stash with my beloved, who battles with sensitive skin and bouts of eczema – but we’ve been pleased to find that these gentle products have done wonders for his skin too. By far my favourite is the Stimulating Face Serum, which I use in place of a night cream. I’ve never used an oil on my face before, and expected it to leave my skin gunky and, well, oily – but a couple drops every night have done incredible things for the dry skin around my eyes, and leave my skin beautifully balanced and radiant. Well impressed with these products, and definitely recommend them for those with sensitive skin like mine.
Hannon Colourblend Lipstick in Cherry
I’ve had great fun stepping out of my red-lip comfort zone with this bonny shade of pink. The lippie goes on nicely (not too waxy or drying), and is pretty long-lasting. This range prides itself on striking the right balance for every skin tone, and while I can’t vouch for anyone else, I do have to admit it strikes a pretty sweet chord in terms of not being too warm or too cold of a colour. If you order online and use the code MINDTHECURVES, you will receive 15% off!
Dare Volumising Mascara
My one-minute makeup routine (for those days you’re rushing to get out the house) involves brows, a good mascara, and slapping on some lippie. If you pare things down to the essentials, you best ensure they be good ones! Dare is a new brand that I recently got to attend the launch for, and along with their gel effect nail polishes (bloody brilliant) and shimmer dust (so sparkly), I found the all-in-one mascara to be a stand-out product. The packaging has a really cool feel to it, and the product goes on like a dream. Just enough volume to make you feel all fluttery, without turning your lashes into a clump of spider legs. The stuff wears really well – I’ve been amazed at how fresh it still looks, even at the end of a tedious day!
Lamelle Dermaheal Foaming Cleanser
I love the fresh tingle of the Dermaheal foaming cleanser, and find it to be the perfect product for days that I’ve packed on the makeup. It does a brilliant job at getting all the grime off in one fell swoop (I don’t even bother with makeup remover when I use it), but unlike many cleansers that I battle with, it doesn’t dry my skin out to a crisp.
Forever 21 felt hat
I’ve received so many compliments on this guy, I thought I’d do y’all a favour and throw him onto this list. I looked for ages for a good winter hat, but every one I found either fit weird, or galled me at its price. This buddy jumped out at me in Forever 21 and was just what I was looking for – plus, at its current sale price, it’s a steal!
I was recently invited to spend an afternoon learning how to take better photographs with my iPhone. While the thought of ambling around Kalk Bay for an afternoon and upping my photography game already sounded fun to me, I was also secretly hoping that my reluctant insta-husband would join me and learn a thing or two about taking my OOTDs. Turns out, we both did.
The course runs over a couple hours as you make a loop in picturesque Kalk Bay, which has plenty of fodder for budding photographers. Our guide, professional photographer Trevor Samson, starts with a short talk with some key pointers on taking better photographs, and then we set off on our walk. The groups are small and intimate, and the real lessons kick in when Trevor stops us at key vantage points, and spends quality one-on-one time working with you while you take photographs. I found this kind of practical lesson both immensely fun and informative, and Trevor’s gentle but brilliant input both inspired and elevated my photography game. The individual attention of this course is a definite USP. Trevor is also chock full of interesting info about Kalk Bay, which adds a whole new dimension to the tour.
The tour ends in a cozy coffee spot, where Trevor reviews the learnings, and runs the group through ways of editing your pictures to get that professional finish – as well as how to save ‘meh’ pictures. We get to check out the pictures taken by the rest of the group, and it’s always amazing to see how different people interpret the same things so differently!
You know when you spot something you like online, and then the ad seems to follow you everywhere you go until you finally cave in and get it? So it was with this incredible bandage dress.
I probably don’t need to explain what I like about it, but suffice it to say I love the simple, classic classiness of it – I feel kind of like a plus size Jackie O in it. Despite the dress being from Queenspark’s ‘straight size’ offering (they also have a Queenspark Plus line), the cut was accommodating for my curves, and the size 20 left ample space for me. The bandage style, while figure fitting, is super forgiving of any lumps and bumps should you want to hide them.
My only complaint? Well, it’s too darn cold to wear it at the moment! Can’t wait for wedding season, when I’ll be sure to get good use out of it!
Check out all the pics below:
Plus size fashion feature: Off-shoulder bandage dress from Queenspark
Lipgloss: Rosebud by Hannon
While I must admit I do love me a good change in seasons, it’s always a wistful goodbye when I pack my summer frocks away at the end of the warm season, so I’ve been trying to get the most wear out of them as possible before it really is too cold. I spied this classic beauty on my recent Queenspark shopping spree, and knew, even before I tried her on, how perfect she would be for me.
The dress is made from a really lovely high quality fabric, and is actually pretty perfect for this inbetween season – it’s not flimsy at all, and with a cardi over my shoulders the dress is still perfect when it starts to get nippy. But it’s the cut I love the most – considerate of a plus size figure, there is ample fabric to allow for larger bosoms and a chubby tum (my worst is finding a wonderful dress that has a weird cut under the arms and shows off half your bra as there isn’t enough fabric). I’m usually a size 20, but took this dress in an 18 with plenty room to spare.
It’s so completely effortless to wear, I know this is going to be a favourite for me for many years to come.
See more of the grand lady below (I’m talking about the dress, not me, although both are below).
Plus size fashion: Polkadot swing dress from Queenspark
Shoes: Tsonga at Poetry (past season)
Lipgloss: Rosebud by Hannon
If it weren’t for our desperate need of rain here in Cape Town, I’d say I wish the weather could always be like this. The skies are sunny and it’s warm enough to be out in a t-shirt, but not so hot that you get all sticky and flustered.
I find dressing for this season a challenge though – my winter staples are all far too warm, but those flimsy summer dresses aren’t quite cutting it either. At the same time, I want to get my last few ‘frock days’ in before I have to reluctantly bid them goodbye until warmer days are back again – let’s just face it, this plus size fashionista is really not a pants person.
On one of my recent perusals of Queenspark (which has REALLY upped its plus size fashion game) I found this satin bomber jacket, and although a little out of my usual style scope, I quickly fell in love. Turns out it’s been the perfect thing for the season – just the thing to go over a t-shirt when the day starts chilling off, or even over a warmer jersey if it’s proper cold. I love that it can be dressed up or down – a really versatile piece.
I had a bit of fun styling it somewhere in between. Check out the images below, and let me know what you think 🙂
Plus size fashion: Satin bomber jacket from Queenspark
I was recently surprised with a link to an interview I did with W24 some time ago, which just got published. Aside from cringing at the sight of myself in video (do I really have such an expressive face?), and lolling my pants off at the fact that it’s filed under ‘celebrity gossip’, it was a little reminder about why I started this whole blog thing in the first place.
Hi, my name’s Meg, and I’m a chronic over-committer.
The below post was due… hmmmmm… lemme see…. over six months ago? Yeah, maybe longer… #worstbloggerever
I’m going to spare you the whining about my guilt and remorse, and just get to the good stuff about fricken’ awesome hair flowers.
So, I’m crushing harder than ever on all things pinup (I think we’ve moved past ‘phase’, through ‘obsession’ solidly into ‘lifestyle’). Along with pretty pouffy skirts, red lips and winged liner, hair flowers are a pretty integral part of the look. It took me a little while to figure out how to style them right – running the risk of looking like I’ve plopped some sparkly plastic on my head – but now that I’ve kinda got the hang of it, I’m beyond smitten with them and don’t feel like my outfit is complete without some pretty foliage. Naturally I’ve needed one of every colour ever to go with any conceivable outfit, and so began the early days of a pretty robust collection.
Here are some of the awesome places I’ve discovered to get hair flowers from along the way:
This be-you-ti-ful online store is run by the outrageously creative SA pinup bombshell, Miss T Bird. Her artistically assembled flowers have a fresh, realistic look to them – like they’ve just been plucked from the most exotic jungle, or generous garden. Because of how lifelike they look, I find they’re some of the flowers I wear the most – they’re that perfect touch to complete an outfit and take you to bombshell level, without pulling all the focus and looking gaudy. The white orchid especially seems to go with just about everything ever, and the pink camellia perks up drabbest of outfits.
Lady Flamingo Boutique hair flowers are available both via Hello Pretty and on Facebook. Lady Flamingo also does custom orders – perfect for bridesmaids and bachelorettes!
MissHapp has long been the one-stop pinup shop for all things scene-related in South Africa, and hair flowers are certainly not an area that this brand disappoints on. This summer has seen designer Mandy bring a touch of fruit to her fresh, funky designs. I love the funky tropical vibe of them, and the texture of the different elements – truly miniature works of art! Cherries remain a personal favourite of mine, so I adore her options which include this fruit.
Calling all geeks and fangirls! Another of South Africa’s incredible pinup ladies, Cherry Lady Lisa (who I have profiled before here), is the creative genius behind Frockabilly, an artisanal hair bow business. She caters to a very wide array of cute and geeky proclivities (from Pokemon, to Harry Potter, to Disney, to oh-so-many more). I was super, super excited to discover some of her spooktacular Halloween-themed goodies (my personal brand of geekiness), which are super cute to wear in your hair – or add to your outfit. (I’m actually pretty tempted to order a pair of something and see if they work as shoe clips!)
I was totally smitten from the first moment I laid eyes on HellRazor‘s designs on Instagram. The combo of fun, funky colours and spooky black cats, eyeballs and Dias Los Muertos paraphernalia had me from the get-go. Lovely creator Jen describes her goods as ‘retro pinup goth style’, which strikes me as kind of perfectly accurate.
HellRazor is US-based, but ships worldwide via etsy.
When I spotted these gorgeous paper flower clips at a local market, I quite literally couldn’t resist. The fine details and delicate colouring give these flowers a delightful vintage feel. Designer Samantha, who is also an incredible wedding, portrait and lifestyle photographer, handmakes a huge variety of quirky and unusual designs.
Sunkissed Handmade flowers are available via Facebook and at the Palms Market in Woodstock, Cape Town.
I would love to make this a comprehensive list of awesome hair flowers (and bows!) available in South Africa, so if you know of someone I’ve missed, please let me know in the comments, or via email at mindthecurvesza at gmail.com.