Tumultuous, Trump-Turmoil

wp-image-434236430jpg.jpegHi friends.

As usual (and somehow, how every single blog post begins), I’ve been scarce. I’m not sorry. Managing a blog is basically like managing a baby, and I’m the Mom who forgets her baby in a Ford Kuga.

Lord have mercy. 

In an attempt to revive my writing spirit (as opposed to my think, keep thinking, overthink, continue to think, don’t stop thinking routine), here’s a little flashback from the morning of November 9th (narrated in a Morgan Freeman voice, obviously).

That morning, I found myself in a frantic check-your-phone-every-5-seconds stage episode in between dropping my sisters off at school, succumbing to disgusting Johannesburg traffic, and fighting my Starbucks craving. I was halfway through having a panic attack, on the verge of having an epileptic fit, and tumbling down a Type-A racist hill. This eventually, obviously (and all-too conveniently) threw drowned me in the River Trump. I sat in my car and cried. Total. Bloody. Confusion.

The US elections had metamorphosed into a horrifying admission that a seventy year old racist, misogynistic, white-supremacist now stood between every single person’s future. Every person? Yes.

Let me break down how, through executive orders signed within the first 100 days in office, the Trump administration aims to stand in your way, my way, and in the way of progressive human and social development – basically life itself.

  • Citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen need to stay in their American-induced comatose, poverty-ridden, economic morgues.
  • Dual nationality? Congratulations. You’ve now been reduced nationalistic individuality like the rest of us.
  • Passports from more than one country? Stop stamping the shiz our of your documents. Go and visit your local home affairs, embassy, or social security centre. You’re a sitting duck.
  • Refugees around the world. The refugee programme has been suspended, but if you’re a part of the 800 refugees in “transit” as the US administration kindly words it, your product/ service is okay for now. If you’re on an undisclosed boat, car, or floaty in the ocean, soz.
  • Green card holder? The robot’s just turned red. Although not explicitly stated within executive orders signed, legal residents of the United States face deportation.
  • Travelers – frequent or not. Interviews (interrogations – let’s be real) are now mandatory for every traveler entering or leaving the United States.
  • Oil. Environments. People. The earth was meant to be used. Money needs to be made. Can all the hippies stop attempting to stop oil pipelines from being built?

Slides hypothetical Hijab slightly off head to reveal hair. 

I’ll just leave this here for you to read again.

One more thing:
If you’re wondering which ant mound housed the hundreds of thousands on Americans who voted for Donald Trump, we’re in the same boat. Yes, the boat probably filled with brown-skinned, opportunity-seeking, racism-fleeing humans.

Tune in next week, when I’ll be discussing the radicalisation of whites.

#ZaahiraOut. 

Wearing:

HM pants, R200
HM T-shirt, R70
HM boots, R200
Ray-Ban Vintage Clubmaster Sunglasses

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Have at.

Hi friend.

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I know I’ve been scarce. Contrary to teenaged thoughts, adulting is quite possibly the most difficult job in the world.

I’ve just dropped by to let you know (for the 50th time) that change is a-coming.

I’ve got beauty content, video content, and stacks of ca- I mean, ideas in the pipeline for my blog and digital work, so be a dear and forgive me for being absent all this time.

I’m sharing some makeup and outfit details with you, so don’t be too mad at me. Also, there’s a little rant attached. Have at.

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Islam’s influence within art, design, fashion, and music extends further than you think. Beyond poor domestic interpretation of Holy reference and ill-informed restrictive behaviour, you needn’t immerse yourself in the Sultan Ahmed’s grandeur of cascading domes and dominating minarets (or finally buck up the courage to speak to a woman who dons the Niqaab) to delve into and understand Islam’s rich influence throughout history. The inability to appreciate culture and love unless it’s packaged in a sweet building with a hefty ticket price is a poor representation of society.

A TV-producer asked me during an interview if I rebel against my religion and its restrictive laws by being ‘fashion-conscious and creative.’ The disturbingly ridiculous wormhole that Muslims remain buried in through constant and continuous re-iteration of needless defence against stereotypical questions displays how thin the bridge of education and correction really is. The misinformed, uneducated belief and subsequent notion that I would wear an item of clothing inherent to my culture and religion to rebel against the very religion that I follow never fails to confirm how close-minded society can be. Often, I find myself rebelling against public-led thought and belief, but never against religion.

Clothes are an extension of one’s being – wearing a floor-length chiffon cape hardly promote my religion. Instead, it remains a powerful and comfortable extension of my personality – a celebration of myself, by myself. Would I wear it to Checkers? You best believe that I would.

My point isn’t that I don’t need to defend my style based on religion or rebellion (which are pathetic associations, by the way), but that clothing needn’t attach itself to an event, act of rebellion, and/or association of any sort to be relevant or important.

Besides, an extension of personality trumps that of a silly question defended by: “Yes, I rebel against ISIS by wearing Islamic-inspired clothing combined with modernity contrary to their laws and stipulations.”

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Wearing:

Handmade/ self-designed Black and White Cape

H&M Black Long-sleeve Top, R200

Cotton On Black Tights, R120

H&M Black Leather Boots, R350

Cotton On Frill Socks, R20

(Two Random Abaya Scarves)

Photography: Lerato Mannya

 

 

 

 

 

Bare Brown – Skinned Bore

(Switches the world off, plays Pillowtalk by Zayn Malik whilst simultaneously blocking out video images of flowering genitalia)

Disclaimer: This post is completely bare of my styles of writing. I tried to imagine you all in front of me, and I think this is what I’d sound like. Please imagine in front of you a 5’7,5” tall girl with curves in all the wrong places, half – carting two laptops, a camera, and prayer mat, all while falling over her own feet and smiling as she awkwardly stares at you (not in the eyes).

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Hi, friend.

I know.
I’m late.
Late, late, late.

Apparently reminiscent of my morning behaviour (I’m literally the slowest person ever) that begs a day – starts – at -12 movement, I’ve been slow to write, slow to upload, slow to photograph, but quick to justify my slowness with reasoning.

Work. Family. Stuff.
Done? I think so. I hope so, at least.

So.

What’s there to look forward to in 2016? My own domain (finally), daily posts (you best be following me on the Instantgrams, Tooters, Snapcrap and Facebricks), a YouTube channel (as if I’m not in your face already), and giving back.

Alhamdulillah – vibes are pretty prominent on my feed. Daily struggles suck, but being thankful reminds me that I’m probably not worse off than the next person. I’m giving to my audience everything that I can – products, material, anything. Also, I’ve been waking up alive each morning, so there’s that.

This year, I’m about myself, and about you.

I’m going to show you who I really I am – behind the lens and in front. I’m going to show you the politics, the hair – pulling late – nights, the pyjama – worthy days, the hypocrisy that creeps in as I stand at a protest for #FeesMustFall with a Balmain dress, and the headscarf that I don so proudly, and remove ever – so – easily. Yesterday I was studying 6 subjects a semester and balancing a part – time job, and today I feel like my brain is rotting because I’m no longer walking across the road to WITS University. It’s a mirage of adjustment, and being unable to say no to anything makes every experience a million times more pressure – ridden for me.

Basically, I’m not here to make you feel worse about yourself when you look down and see that you can’t afford a pair of Happy Socks. I’m here to smile with you, annoy you, and sometimes be a little too busy building my empire to reply instantly to you.

So here’s to 2016, friend.

See you soon.

– Zaahira Y’elena

Soviet Jeans Leather Boots

H&M Black Tights

Top Shop Black Long – Sleeved Top

Vintage Chanel Coat

Legit Fashion Jewellery

Photogaphy // Kamogelo Mogashoa @kamogashoa

Styling // Zaahira Y’elena Mahomed

 

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How I survived bed – ridden allergies

One month.

ONE MONTH of non – stop, eye – burning, nose – itching, chest – jerking, earthquake – level sneezing, skin irritating, ear – bursting allergies.

If you’re a sufferer of hayfever or pretty much any type of allergy, you probably understand my plight. For the blessed few who dont experience such, the normative is being forcefully awoken at 3:30am with a sinus attack that causes infections, the inability to move and sleep, and Breaking Bad narcotic – like behaviour.

Trust me.

After you’ve sneezed 30 times in a row (actually, my record was close to 50), you’ll gulp down any medication, any way (I would have seriously considered an adult suppository), at any time (at a time, I had been taking 4 different medications in the span of 20 minutes).

Unfortunately, the ocean works its own evil magic on me – something that my doctor friends nor my actual doctor can’t understand.

Surely when you’ve left the fuming city, the polluted highways, the garbage – ridden streets, the passive cigarette smoke in your face, the refrigerator CFCs, your allergies are bound to clear up?

Haha.

The worst effect, by far, is the eye – burning and itching. I’d started developing thick layers within my eye following the way I kneaded my eyes like roti dough.

Fast forward a month (yip, every minute of every single day) with no recovery. I was DYING to get home.

Re – booked an early ticket home, packed my bags, and flew home as I watched the first Christmas full moon in 30 years.

Solution for my allergies?
A combination of apple cider vinegar, combined with the Johannesburg air.

Stir in 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar with a cup of warm water, and swallow it like your life depends on it.
Follow it up with another dose a few hours later.

Every morning, take a half dosage of your allergy medication, followed by the other half at night.

Your allergies won’t disappear forever, but they won’t exist for the day. Repeating this for a few days will reduce your allergies, and hopefully clear them completely.

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You’ll be able to breathe.

Let’s get back to ISIS.

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historic
/hɪˈstɒrɪk/ adjective
1. Famous or important in history, or potentially so.

The past two weeks have been historic. Not in a way any humane person would want to remember, but historic in a way that digs into your very being, extracting hatred with its claws, and hatred – hatred is the weapon that will make us, or break us all.

I’ve decided to spend a full month on writing ISIS – themed posts in an attempt to educate the less – informed (many South Africans, from what I’ve encountered on the Twittersphere) on the Islamic State, the religion of Islam, and the politics that surround Syria, since the media’s pathetic coverage of it is rife.

Beginning this week, various posts will be uploaded with the intention of aiding readers (hopefully young readers) to construct informed opinions of ISIS with consideration of both Muslim and non – Muslim perspectives, and understand why the Islamic State exists, and what they aim to achieve.

My posts will be simple, and you’re welcome to ask me anything over social media or on my blog.

It’s imperative that we speak about the radicalisation of young Muslims and non – Muslims (You see? Extremely debatable already) from perspectives other than biased CNN and the BBC’s desks, and the effects thereof, as well as possible effects on home soil, wherever you are.

I do urge you, however, to keep racist, discriminative remarks to yourself, because I refuse to tolerate small – mindedness on an online space that I control.

I might chuck in a cool insert into my L’Oréal project next week as well, so if you’re here for the fashion, keep your eyes peeled!

Till then, keep the faith, and love hard.
That’s all I have for you for now.

Oh, and smash exams. And holidays.

xxx
– Zaahira Y’elena

What I’m wearing:

Drama, basically. Head to toe, I’m wearing drama.

I’m a sucker for vintage clothes, gifts, style, lifestyle (I think I was meant to live in the 1920s), and pants suits define me. They’re every bit of shoulder pads and sleekness a girl could wish for, and you really can’t go wrong with a tailored skinny leg.

The buttoned effect on these pants create a vertical distribution of attention, and the suit jacket –

Sigh.

The suit jacket is probably the most amazing item of clothing I’ve ever worn, and like my Mom, it ain’t leaving my cupboard until someone steals it (G-d forbid).

It has a dimensional two buttoned front with tailored cut – outs that almost shape the waist (not that I need help, but hey) and tastes of a Scarlett Johanssen – in – a – suit risqué. It envelopes lack of conventionalism, and breaks the barrier of modest sophistication a little bit with its sexiness.

Sunglasses are obviously vintage Ray Ban; I’d never stare you (or 2015) down with anything else, and what like to call my, ‘Steve Madden box – bag,’ is the perfect finish. I particularly love this bag because it opens at the back with a clasp that you’d need both your hands for, and I’m paranoid as —-. Also, it’s probably the only form of snake skinned product or inspiration I’ll tolerate (I have a phobia that will make you fear my phobia).

Vintage Chanel Suit
Foschini Shoes
Ray Ban Sunglasses
Steve Madden Bag

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Get Summer – Ready with Benefit!

Photography by @kamogashoa

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Hi Benebabes!

In anticipation for summer and all its glory (2015/16 is going to be the hottest summer that SA has ever experienced, so brace yourselves!), I’m collaborating with Benefit Cosmetics to bring you a lovely giveaway with items including They’re Real! Mascara, POREfessional balm, and more!

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If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen me tag Benefit South Africa a few times in my shameless makeup selfies (I surrender to the power of my front camera).

I’ve used their POREfessional, Roller Lash (currently my favourite mascara ever), They’re Real! mascara, Gimme Brow, Hoola Bronzer, and Watt’s Up highlighter, and I’ve had an amazing experience with all their products!

I decided to do a little review on Roller Lash and show you why I’m uber – obsessed with it!

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For me, it’s firstly about the packaging. Not just the actual product, but the box and its accompaniments. I love the fact that Benefit always has quirky little messages that resonate with what we’re looking for in a product, and their products are always of prestine quality. The well – established brand never fails to stay current with consumers, and that’s a huge plus for me. Times and trends are constantly changing, and if a brand can keep up with that, it’s a plus for me!

Roller Lash has the most amazing applicator hand grip – it’s almost like those gel grip pens that you buy for school, except for mascara! The packaging almost smiles at you with a sweet pink tone and lace – like finish, and stands perfectly upright!

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I rarely use mascara wands with applicator bristles that are relatively long and texturised, because they tend to clump my lashes up, and I end up looking like a badger. I prefer a curling brush that really hugs the base of my lashes (I like to get in there!) and lifts the lashes without pulling them or forcing them to stick together, allowing my small eyes to look wider and more awake – and Roller Lash does exactly that. Bye bye, eyelash curler.

You can build up the intensity of the lashes with each application; I would suggest a few coats for a night out, and a light application for the daytime. Lashes stay lifted and curled without being too dramatic (unless that’s what you’re going for, in which case, apply a coat of Roller Lash to lift and curl the lashes, and follow with a coat of They’re Real! mascara. Drama, drama, drama!)

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The mascara lasts day and night, and won’t budge for the heat. It isn’t waterproof, but the quality is amazing, so you’ll need a good makeup remover for this one!

Mascaras have different effects on different hair textures, so I got my friend Kamo (who did the amazing photography for this post) to try out the product as well. The mascara visibly lifted her lashes and she looked absolutely stunning! (Sidebar: How gorgeous is she?)

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If you’re after a real mascara that doesn’t mess you around (literally), I’d suggest a try at Roller Lash. I love it!

As for the giveaway, see below for entry rules!

Have an amazing week, lovelies! Stay Bene – beautiful xx

The rules are simple:
– You must be following myself @wearmyskin and @benefitsouthafrica on Instagram.
– Repost any of the images from this blog post to Instagram, Twitter, or FB with the hashtag: #wearmyskinXbenefitSA
– Remember to tag myself and Benefit so your entries are seen, and be creative with your captions. I want to know what makes you summer ready or what you’ll be up to this summer!
– Alternatively, tag 2 – 5 people beneath any of my posts with the hashtag and you’ll be entered in!
– Please keep your account public so your entries are visible.
– The winner will be announced in a blog post next week, so keep your eyes peeled!

Good luck, Benebabes! Mascara bristles crossed for you!

xxx
– Zaahira Y’élena

Disclaimer: This giveaway is only open to South African residents. There is no entry limit, and multiple entries may be posted across social media. The competition will run from Tuesday 03 November to Wednesday 11 November. Winners will be selected via a randomiser app.

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Paris.

Paris.
On the art of romance,
and her magnificence.

Bien nourri et mal apris.

Inhaling deep richness as it exhales the finest tailored outfits on swaying high – ponied, celebratory Balmain bodies beneath mounds of floral, no – frills Dior beneficence, through Chanel airport terminals alongside 3D synchronised abstract digital frontiers at Louis Vuitton, Paris Fashion Week 2015 was, well, everything.

New York, London and Milan are sweet replicators who chase a vision, but Paris – Paris breathes benevolence. As a trade, in return for all the pieces of Africa, Asia and Europe bring to Paris for Fashion Week, Paris lends the world a little bit of her soul.

This year brought a series of fresh hues to fashion, with Valentino’s designs visiting Africa, Hermès sneaker dress downs, Giambattista Valli’s Bohemian exoticism, Stella McCartney’s fearless sportiness (Amen, sister), Dolce and Gabbana’s Italian lovestory (every bit of silky pasta you could possibly dream of), Roberto Cavalli’s spanking new design house, Versace’s military grade armed response, and Moschino’s constructed couture politesse (Bless you, Jeremy Scott).

Paris Fashion Week SS16 dawned on us like a fresh breathe of creativeness, and classic romantic entrenchment.

Paris Fashion Week is, and will always be, the movement in the bodies, the speech in the tones, and the beauty in the faces.

Paris is loved. Paris is why her inhabitants choose to revel in her 500 year old meticulously – detailed buildings as their lives tip toe beneath her tower.

She is.

I’ll see you next year, Paris. For my love, and for you.

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Sissy Boy Jeans – Banana Republic Top – Soviet Leather Boots – TopShop Plaited Belt

Miglio Designer Jewellery NecklaceRay – Ban ClubMaster Sunglasses

Photography by Kamogashoa