Sunday, March 24, 2013


Recently I got home from one of the most incredible places I have been to yet...JAPAN! Blake and I booked this holiday so long ago that we thought it was never going to come and it came and went in a flash :(

An intersection in Tokyo

The reason for the trip was to visit the snow in Niseko, where Blake's friend was renting a house, and of course go snowboarding. This was going to be the whole trip but I insisted that we could not go to Japan without visiting Tokyo!

Freezing cold!

So we spent 3 days in Tokyo before heading to Niseko for 8 nights and finished up in Sapporo for the last night before heading home.

The famous Harajuku st!

Harajuku street - unfortunately we didn't see too many people dressed up
- I think it was too cold!

Tokyo was incredible. Our favourite part was the people watching and in a city that big there is a lot of it! We also loved travelling on the trains and managed to only get lost once in doing so, which I was pretty impressed with. Three days might not seem enough time for such a big city but Blake and I found it was just right, by the end of it we were getting a bit sick of being surrounded by so many people.

A fun run going on, this street had all the major designers stores
A Chanel store in Shibuya
A gorgeous chapel we found by accident wandering through Shibuya

Niseko was absolutely mind blowing! The amount of snow in that place is just insane. The streets are lined with it and it didn't stop snowing the whole time we were there. Of course this made the snowboarding pretty amazing, although pretty hard for me as I was still learning. Eventually though I picked it up and can now proudly say that I can snowboard :) I even ventured into an off the path treed area, not on purpose, but I still did it without falling over or hitting a tree! haha

Gorgeous snow covered pine trees

A house covered!
The house we stayed in :)
Blake was very excited
The view from our window
The walls of snow in the town
Volcano Yotei in Niseko
Me after falling down the hill we climbed up to get the last photo!

Our amazing snowman!

Japan was really incredible and we will definitely be going back...hopefully soon!

Have any of you been to Japan? Where was your favourite place?

Hope you all had a great weekend :)

Hannah xox

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Review: Paul Penders Hair Products

A little while ago I was contacted by the lovely Chui who works for Paul Penders. At the time I had not heard of the brand before so I was intrigued about the company and their products. Chui explained to me that the company was founded over 40 years ago in Holland and is run by Paul Penders who is an avid environmentalist and animal lover. You can read more about their story here.

It is for these reasons that the products are all derived from natural ingredients and are never tested on animals. He started creating shampoos and has since moved on from there now incorporating all kinds of beauty products into his environmentally friendly line.

I was a bit of a newbie to natural hair care products so Chui kindly explained to me that there were a lot of benefits to using products with natural ingredients as opposed to the chemically packed shampoo & conditioner I was previously using. The most obvious being that your not putting unnatural chemicals into your hair, which although may make it feel nice in the short term, can be quite damaging in the long term, with increased hair loss and even bad reactions to the chemicals they contain.

They kindly sent me a few products from the hair care line to test out and give my thoughts on. Here is  what I thought of each of the products :)

Paul Penders Time-Release Jasmine Shampoo ($25.00AUD - 200mL)

What they say: 

"Paul Penders Time-Release Jasmine Shampoo is designed to first cleanse the scalp, ensuring a healthy foundation for beautiful, shiny & manageable hair. During lathering, as some water is added, this shampoo formulation "breaks open" to create rich foam. After washing hair is visibly full, feels luxurious and is easy to style."

What I say:

For those who haven't tried a natural shampoo before they will get a bit of a shock the first time using this. It is not a shampoo that really lathers and foams up, instead it only slightly foams when adding a touch of water. At first it can be quite hard to work into the hair but once you have used it a couple of times you get used to the feel and the best way to work it into the scalp and hair. I do find that it really gives my scalp and hair a good clean and my hair does feel very nice after I have finished washing it. I wouldn't say that my hair is any easier to manage after using this to another shampoo but I have never found a shampoo/conditioner where my hair isn't a tangled mess after washing (probably a result of the way I wash/dry my hair!). I have to say though that this smells incredible and makes your hair smell amazing! 

Paul Penders Herbal Lemon Conditioner ($25.00AUD for 200mL)

What they say: 

"Herbal Lemon Conditioner is particularly designed to add shine, restore balance and harmony for all hair types. Apply generously throughout for instant moisture, vitality and shine. Corrects dry hair and brittle ends. Does not "weigh down" hair. Leave in for 2 minutes before rinse for best results."

What I say;

First of all, this again smells incredible, is it just me or do natural products usually smell amazing? I really enjoy using this. In the past I have been known to use an unnecessary amount of know how your mother always tells you "use the amount of a 20c coin" well I was never one to follow that rule. My conditioner blob looked more like a couple of 50c coins! What I find with this conditioner is that I don't have to use half the bottle in order to make my hair feel super soft, even though it is quite a lightweight consistency for a conditioner. I cannot express how nice this makes my hair feel after I have rinsed it out as well as how shiny and healthy my hair looks. This is a definite favourite for me.

Paul Penders Intensive Hair Repair Therapy ($29.50AUD for 120g - Currently on sale for $14.75!!)

What they say: 

"Restores balance and life to dry, damaged, permed or coloured hair leaving it glowing and manageable. Hair indulged with this emollient feels silky without weighing down. Apply generously and massage through hair and scalp. Leave for up to 30 minutes to infuse. Rinse well. For vitality and shine. Corrects dry & brittle ends. Use daily or weekly after Paul Penders shampoo & conditioner."

What I say: 

Again this product smells incredible due to the numerous flower and herb extracts it contains. This is a light-weight hair mask which feels nice when applied and leaves the hair silky and smooth. It adds extra necessary moisture back into my hair as my hair can get very dry and brittle feeling if it's not washed or treated regularly. All in all its a great hair mask and one that I will continue to use. I probably wouldn't use the product daily as they recommend as I feel this would be too difficult time-wise and I wouldn't want my hair to get used to this much treatment so regularly but I find that once a week or once a fortnight is good to keep my hair from getting too dry and brittle.

My biggest concern about trying a natural shampoo & conditioner was that I thought my hair would not feel as clean or as soft...but boy was I wrong. After using these products for a couple of times I was pleasantly surprised by how clean my hair was feeling and how shiny and silky it was to the touch.

Paul Penders products are available to purchase at their website. They are currently having a 50% off sale on some of their items including the hair mask I talked about. The sale ends 31st March 2013. 

Have you tried any Paul Penders products or any natural hair care products? What are your thoughts?

Hannah xox

**Products provided for review as per disclosure statement. Please note I only review products provided by companies if I am genuinely impressed with them. All opinions are 100% my own & honest.