Saturday, 21 March 2020

Siege of State: 26/11 – Revisit Mumbai Attacks

After more than a decade to the most horrific Mumbai terror attacks in 2008, the scars on the soul of the nation are still not healed. The survivors of the fateful event still get petrified narrating the experience of how they managed to escape the well-conceived series of shooting and bombing by trained terrorists at multiple locations.

A few years ago, I had a chance to read Black Tornado: The Three Sieges of Mumbai 26/11 which is an admirable novel by Sandeep Unnithan wherein the author had interestingly documented the factual circumstances of the 26/11 attacks. After finishing the book, I realized that I had a better understanding of the terror siege of Mumbai and the role of the NSG. But somehow the book had ignited a curiosity in my heart to know more of the event.

Recently, while exploring some entertaining stuff to watch, I came across the trailer of State of Siege: 26/11 that is an adaption of the bestselling novel Black Tornado which I read years ago. The title obviously caught my attention and I thoroughly enjoyed watching it. 
Image Source: An OTT Platform
Here is why you should be watching the series.. 
11 years on from the Mumbai massacre, this ZEE5 Originals series State of Siege: 26/11 is being released that will present the untold stories from the 2008 Mumbai attacks responsible for giving the whole country a jolt out of brutal killing.
The eight-episodes long crime thriller, all set to premiere on 20th March, is believed to highlight the lesser-known facts and the challenges faced by brave NSG commandos during the rescue operation.
The plot revolves around bravery, passion, emotions and trauma stitching the anecdotes aptly.

Star Cast 
The main cast includes Mukul Dev, Arjan Bajwa, Arjun Bijlani, Vivek Dahiya, and Sid Makkar. Each and every character has aced the desired characteristics of the assigned role and got amalgamated so well in the story to leave the audience thrilled.

Arjun Bijlani, playing Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan in his digital debut, feels every line he utters with enthusiasm. His touching dialogues like "Hum lautkar zaroor aayenge. Apna Tiranga lehrakar ya phir usme lipatkar" will fill your heart with the feeling of patriotism and the regard for the brave martyr. The sharp body language of all the NSG commandos appeals a lot.

The performance of Mukul Dev in a negative role of terrorist head Zaki-Ur-Rehman Lakhvi goes way beyond acting. His appearance, clothing, makeup and the confident dialogue delivery in a husky voice is enough to unnerve the audience.
Image Source: An OTT Platform
The Real Culprits 
The show doesn't mislead the audience by altering the facts about real culprits who are still on the loose. The flaws of the security, police, army and the bureaucracy have been delineated wherever required without any intention to conceal those.

Powerful Message
The trailer of the web series itself showcases a thoughtful message - 'Terrorism has no religion", which validates the secularist approach. It clearly conveys that no violence can be justified in the name of religion and one should discourage blatant misuse of religion for terrorist activities in the interest on mankind. Whichever country, religion or caste we belong to, above all, we are humans.

I must say I've been watching and enjoying ZEE5 earlier also, but State of Siege is certainly going to be the most gripping one. Watch out for the show to feel the pain of surviving Mumbai..

Wednesday, 8 January 2020

Discover Wholesome Goodness of Palm Oil

"Awareness is like the Sun. When it shines on things, they are transformed."
I'm a believer of the fact that until you know about something in and out, just do not make an opinion. And it stands true for everything in life, be it a person, a thing or a situation. I genuinely look for opportunities wherein some trustworthy information is accessible to me. 

This Monday (i.e. on January 6th, 2020), I got one such opportunity to attend Palm Oil: Gourmet Delight, an amazing bloggers' meet-cum-food hunt organised by Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC) at Sip n Dine Banquet, Chandigarh where Ms. Bhavna Shah (Country Representative, India and Sri Lanka, MPOC) apprised us about Malasiyan Palm Oil which happens to be most dominant vegetable oil in the market.
Through her presentation, Ms. Bhavna delineated not just the process of origination of palm oil, but also threw light on how each of us directly or indirectly consumes it almost every day. I was astonished to know the multitude of health benefits that palm oil might provide us without any side effects.
Just to encapsulate, sharing a few pointers that I fetched at the event-

  • Palm oil is made from the fruit of the palm tree (Elaeis guineensis). The oil palm yield has two types. One is extracted from the flesh of the fruit, called as palm oil and the other from the seed called as palm kernel oil.
  • Palm Oil and its derivatives are widely used in a big percentage of our daily-use products including snacks, cosmetics, personal care, detergent, desserts, chocolates, margarine, bio diesel, packaged food items and much more.
  • Other than on-shelf products, Palm Oil is extensively used for cooking or frying as it remains stable at high heat and is neutral in taste that doesn't alter the flavour or aroma of the dish.
  • Palm oil is one of the most widely produced edible fats in the world. It is least expensive oil as compared to other edible oils due to its high-yielding crop. And that's why the relatively lesser price shouldn't be questionable for its efficacy/quality.
  • Palm Oil doesn't contribute to any health hazards like heart condition, skin problems, brain malfunctioning; rather it's likely safe when consumed in sync with other oil blends that suit your body. If you find yourself unable to blend oils, then it's advised to switch oils after a regular interval and avail health benefits of all oils in-turns.
  • Like all other vegetable oils, palm oil is cholesterol- free and it also has lower tendency to oxidize. It can be easily digested, absorbed and utilized by body as a source of energy.
  • Lastly, I would like to specifically state here that palm oil industry is observing a number of laws and regulations to reduce the impact of the industry on the environment for achieving sustainability of palm oil production. For more relevant info, click
Unlike a usual meet up, the #MPOC event was more of a Laugh-n-Learn get together where the hosts had lined up some action-packed fun activities for the attendees to enhance our finite understanding of palm oil in an engaging manner.

As soon as the presentation was over, the bloggers were divided into small groups for the Food Hunt. We were given clue cards to decode the next venue name for the next activity. From Sip-n-Dine, we rushed to Crazy Town where we brainstormed really hard to crack some tricky questions about palm oil for the Quiz Competition.

By decoding another clue card, we stepped into another lively venue i.e. The Safe House for the Blind Food Tasting Session where we were served yummilicious delicacies cooked in palm oil and we enjoyed naming ingredients used in the dish with our eyes blindfolded during the activity. What amazed me during the food tasting is that the food cooked in palm oil tastes as good as any other cooking oil!

Our last pit-stop was at The Finch for Salad Making activity, where our team creatively crafted a healthy version of veggie salad. The Palmysterious Salad, as we named it lovingly, tasted so good with a dressing of palm oil ;)

While we were all engrossed in the delightful activities, a stage was being set at our original venue for a Bollywood themed competition. I bet everyone had an abundant dose of humour. I too attempted delivering a dialogue of SriDevi from the movie Chandni.
The judges awarded the best performers with the titles of King and Queen. The winning team was rewarded for their enthusiastic participation. The day ended with tasty lunch over a cheerful conversation with fellow bloggers.

My major takeaway from the event was a much clearer viewpoint on favourable nutritional effects of Malasiyan Palm Oil that would now lead me to its better acceptance in my daily household without any opinion conflicts.

Really feeling gratified to have attended this informative session by MPOC.

Thursday, 26 December 2019

Who are our favourite celebrities on TikTok!

Today, thanks to the availability of high-speed internet, people are able to share content with their friends and family. With platforms such as TikTok, this has transcended to a larger audience and people who were brilliant content creators, are now being appreciated for spreading joy with their unique and enjoyable content on TikTok. With TikTok’s ability to connect people and create a sense of community, it’s no surprise that Bollywood, too has used it to connect with their fans and audience. In fact, TikTok has shown a more human side of Bollywood celebrities, which also show us that they are just people like us who want to have fun.

However, one of TikTok’s greatest features is its inclusivity. People who we have never heard of have now become stars, thanks to the content they share, which is why some TikTok celebs have more followers than Bollywood superstars.

As a platform to engage a growing fan base in India, TikTok also served as the launchpad for a diverse array of local creators. In January 2019, TikTok had an audition called the 1 million audition, which saw a lot of unique content from far corners of the country. In fact, this audition was extremely special for Kerala with 85-year-old Mary Joseph Mampilly winning the audition from the #1MVinesMalayalam. The TikTok entries, submitted by her grandson, Jinson won the hearts of many and became so popular that they helped her kick start her acting career. The octogenarian got an opportunity to feature in two highly anticipated Malayali movies.

Another example of TikTok collaborators getting a huge following base is the duo of Awez Darbar and Nagma Mirajkar. Nagma is even followed by Bollywood playback singer Neha Kakkar! Awez is mechanical engineer, while Nagma has a M. Com and an MBA and they highlight this in one TikTok video to show that they use the platform to showcase their talent and connect with their audience.

Bollywood actor Riteish Deshmukh and his partner Genelia Deshmukh constantly share videos of their love. When Riteish joined TikTok, he and Geneila collaborated and participated in the #blowdrychallenge, which received 762,000 likes on TikTok.

Like the Deshmukhs, TikTok celebrity and Bollywood playback singer Neha Kakkar is always the first to share positive videos on her profile. Using the #positivity, Neha shares video on the importance of being happy. These videos have also garnered a lot of support from her 12.3 million followers on the app.

Bollywood stars have even used TikTok to spread a social message. Disha Patani even teamed up with TikTok in a campaign called #PetBFF. As part of this campaign, TikTok launched an in-app campaign #PetBFF on TikTok that focuses on educating people about the importance of adoption of strays and homeless animals rather than buying expensive breeds. Patani came forward to lend her voice to the cause and encouraged people to help animals who face innumerable incidents of cruelty from humans.

Another TikTok star Akshay Kakkar is a huge star, mainly because of his messages that promote his dance videos that also highlight body positivity. His videos have over a million followers and he has even shared TikTok space with Sunny Leone!

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Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Oriflame Glacier Eau De Toilette - Men's Fragrance Review

Hey Everyone!

It's been pretty long that I could spare time from my hectic work schedule in past few months for a post on the blog. But here is one after much delay...
Everyone in the family knows my growing love for the fragrances, hence they gift me some 'good' ones many a times that compliment my personality. This father's day, I was gifted a cool fragrance by my little boy and I'm sharing a quick piece of my opinion on the same.

Oriflame Glacier Eau De Toilette - 
As you may expect it's a men's fragrance from Oriflame fantastic product range.

Product Description by the brand:
This crisp, invigorating scent is perfect for the sporty, free-spirited man. Organic and masculine bottle shape with the colour of the deep ocean.
The Glacier EDT is a herbal blend of Rosemary and Tarragon mingled with a twist of Mint and deep woody, amber undertone. In my view, the fragrance is not so musculine that it would please only men. It seems equally sophisticated to be worn by elegant women too.

Being an EDT, it has got higher concentration of the perfume essences than a cologne. It lasts on your body for moderate duration of apprx. 3-4 hours and needs reapplication, if required. The fragrance is not very strong but keeps you fresh in those hot sweltering days. I personally love such fragrances for regular office days when the objective is not to seduce your mates, but to leave an impact while making my senses feel rejuvenated. To get the long-lasting effect of this enchanting perfume, spray it in your neck, elbow, and wrists.

The packaging of Glacier Eau De Toilette is a decent glass vessel without any adornments. It fits the grip of your hand perfectly and spritz well. 
Also this fragrance makes a great gifting option budgetwise. You may get a 100ml bottle for almost INR 1500. Also keep an eye on the deals offered by Oriflame in their monthly catalogues that can be availed via their consultants.
In short, Oriflame Glacier Eau De Toilette is an aromatic accessory that one can adore for it's lively scent.

Review By-

Saturday, 29 June 2019

Soothe Your Dry Skin With Body Creams

The kind of skin I have, it needs constant care to keep it hydrated. Many other like me who have dry skin type might be experiencing those small fine flakes and dry patches on their body that actually suck. For most people, skin dryness is common in colder winter months and drier climates, but there are some who face it all the year long. Skin dryness might be caused due to excessive skin cleansing, frequent exposure to hot water, environmental factors, lesser liquid intake, side effect of some medication or simply a genetic condition. My skin usually feel tight n itchy after shower and looks ashy n rough until I apply generous amount of moisturizer. Recently I realized that I've not been benefited despite repeated application of moisturizer. Probably I didn't pick an emollient based on the ingredients and composition needed for my dry skin & the moisturizer gets worn off quickly leaving my skin back to the condition where I started.

After this realization, I decided to give body creams a try which contains more oils and thus ordered two variants from Oriflame a month ago. So here are my thoughts on these-

Possess Perfumed Body Cream

With a timeless, sparkling yet intensely seductive fragrance, Possess Body Cream embodies the provocative allure of Cleopatra and keeps your skin sensually soft all over. Formulated with a higher fragrance concentration, it’s laced with intoxicatingly tempting notes of ylang ylang, and leaves no one indifferent as it casts its spell.
Love Potion Perfumed Body Cream
Stay soft all over and excite pure passion with Love Potion Body Cream. With a higher fragrance concentration, set the mood with this seductive oriental scent with ginger, cocoa blossom and chocolate. Surrender to an irresistible awakening of sensual pleasure.
Product Packaging
Both the body creams come in similar packaging that is in huge round tubs. They look cute lying on your washroom shelf. The tubs have broad opening, so one has to be extra careful to avoid water dripping inside the tub if you're applying it in your washroom post shower. Also either you should a spatula to take out the cream or if using fingers, make sure your hands are not wet.
I always keep some body lotions in my office bag, travel bag, in my car and wherever I can be; but these huge sized body cream packs are somehow inconvenient to carry around unless you transfer some quantity in a smaller jar. 
The plus point of such tub packaging is that you can utilise even the last traces of product and avoid any wastage.

Price & Qty: INR 779 each for 250 g (can be purchased in offers from Oriflame consultants for a lesser price)

Product Texture:
The creams are of consistency similar to whipped cream. It's neither runny as a moisturizer nor thick as a body butter...It's texture is somewhere in between.
If you noticed, both these body creams are 'perfumed' (as the name reveals). I experienced that the fragrance lingers on your body for hours after application and feels like you've applied a mild deodorant. Those who wear gentle fragrances may probably skin their usual perfumes if any of these body creams is applied. I personally liked Possess's fragrance more.

How to use these and how it feels on skin?
The body creams provide the most benefit when applied on your skin right after the bath. Just massage it lightly on your body when the skin is still damp and then pat your skin dry. The damp skin best absorbs the moisture and locks it in for a longer time. A repeated application before bedtime is a must for me for a comfortable sleep in my soft skin.
Oriflame body creams, despite lighter in texture, are richer and luxurious when applied. They penetrate the skin in no time, create barrier that nourishes the skin and as a result prevents moisture from evaporating through the pores. Your skin really feels hydrated without looking shiny and greasy. Adding a body cream to your daily skin care regime not just softens the rough skin for the moment, but gives ongoing skin nourishment.
These body creams are boon for dry skin type, but those who have normal to oily skin type and still have rough areas on their body like around the elbows, knees or feet might avail benefit from body cream application.
For me, Oriflame perfumed body creams not only served well for my moisturizing needs, but also give me a sensory relaxation from their scented wealth and skin suppleness. 

Friday, 31 May 2019

NovAge Ultimate Lift Overnight Lifting & Contouring Cream Review

The NovAge Ultimate Lift Skin Care Set has 5 products consisting of Cleansing Gel, Eye Cream, Concentrate Serum, SPF rich Day Cream and Overnight Lifting & Contouring Cream. 

This post will concentrate mainly on the Overnight Lifting & Contouring Cream.
If loss of firmness and sagginf of skin are ageing your face, it's time to bounce back with the NovAge Ultimate Lift Overnight Lifting & Contouring Cream which is Oriflame's advanced-performing product to restore firmness and elasticity for a lifted look with a delightfully youthful bounce.

Powered by patented AspartoLift Technology and Buddleja Plant Stem Cell extract, NovAge Ultimate Lift boosts elastin synthesis and helps to protect the integrity of the skin's extracellular matrix, enhancing the skin's elasticity to help lift, firm and redefine facial contours, as well as smoothing out wrinkles.
Extra-nourishing and replenishing night cream powered by Aspartolift and plant stem cell extract. It restores hydration, firmness and elasticity while you sleep for a lifted appearance over time with more defined contours and less visible wrinkles. Delicately fragranced.

Being one of the thicker products in your skincare routine usually, your night cream provide the final layer of active ingredients together with moisturisation. While the day cream is designed to help protect your skin from daytime aggressors; the night cream is designed to restore, replenish and lock in moisture while you sleep.
NovAge Ultimate Lift Overnight Lifting & Contouring Cream is a mildly fragranced cream that is light in texture. You need to apply just 5 pea-sized dots of cream on your forehead, each cheek, your nose and chin. Use your fingertips to lightly massage the cream evenly all over your face avoiding the eye area until it is fully absorbed. The whipped texture feels like a dream and makes it so easy to spread and sink into skin effortlessly. 
While you sleep with the cream on, it nourishes the skin and addresses signs of fatigue with continued use. Even the most efficacious night creams are not going to transform your skin in one night. It would take weeks or even months to show results for the skin concerns like uneven skin tone, fine lines, or wrinkles,. So patiently feed your skin regularly with a good night cream.
Speaking about it's packaging, I like the elegantly rich glass jar in a pretty purple-gold color. The jar is packed in a outer cardboard box with same color theme. The price, quantity, ingredient list and shelf life etc are all printed on it.
NovAge Ultimate Lift Overnight Lifting & Contouring Cream is not a budget purchase (Rs. 2250 for 50ml) for sure, but if you're looking for a product that will genuinely make you look forward to your night time routine, this is one of those products.  

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Benefits of Nutrishake (Natural Mango-Banana Flavour)

Do you want to be so healthy that it shows – in your skin, your energy levels, or with how happy you are?
At Wellness by Oriflame, the brand is committed to guide you through the complex world of healthy eating and dietary supplements, offering a range of high-quality, natural products that are developed by world's leading Swedish scientists and nutritional experts along with in-depth lifestyle advice on how to achieve complete healthy lifestyle.
Me and my husband personally have been consuming Oriflame's wellness products since past one year and also shared my experience on various products I tested. If you missed reading those, check out how we liked strawberry and vanilla nutrishakes, how can we optimize health with Astaxanthin based supplements and how Omega 3 supplements work for body..
For this summer season, when we thought of adding a energising shake to our breakfast, the first thought was to order a flavourful Nutrishake and we picked up Mango Banana flavour this time that fulfills our craving for season's fav mangoes too ;)
Product Brief:
Nutrishake is a high protein and high fibre formula containing proteins from three sources namely Milk, Peas and Soy. 
This is a food supplement, so should not be used as a substitute for a varied diet. Ideally one serving of diet shake is fine per day accompanied with two normal meals. People who are allergic to milk and soy should avoid consuming it.

Nutrition Information:
How to consume it?
A scoopful of 18g qty should be mixed well in cold water and consumed. People who are wellness freaks can blend nutrishake powder into their smoothies, puree, slushies etc to enhance the goodness of usual healthy recipes.
Nutrishake has optimal nutritional ingredients and natural flavors with minimum calories. It contains healthy soluble and non-soluble fibres from sugar beet for healthy nutritional intake. This enables the body to maximize the intake of essential ingredients and support the body in the best possible way.
Nutrishake helps you stay full for longer, curbs false craving and raises your energy levels. 

The carbohydrates used in the Nutrishake formulation are apple, rosehip and whey (milk). It helps to maintain a stable blood sugar level. The three vegetarian protein sources promote optimal cell functions and high satiety leading to a natural lower intake of calories. This in turn help most people lose weight successfully for short term. Also the duration to expect the weight loss depends on weight and overall health of the person.

Overall, the diet meal shakes like nutrishake have required amount of protein, fiber and essential vitamins and minerals, so they serve as one of best meal-on-the-go. 

Tuesday, 7 May 2019

Get Embellished With 6 Premium Laces By Riechers Marescot

Lace is an ultra sophisticated and premium fabric to coddle the beauty in you. This delicate lace fabric is made from yarn of weblike mesh. There are variations of this type. Most of the time it is used to embellish the apparel but some fashion drapes are entirely made out of it. Its sheerness pampers the delicacy and royal look of the apparel. Also, valuable stones, pearls, gold, and silver are used to make it. Let’s explore the lace fabric in details.

Lace by Riechers Marescot
Lacey dresses are often symbolized as feminine exuberance. The array of premium lace by Riechers Marescot is superfluous endorsing this regal feminine spirit. Based on France it is worldwide famous for manufacturing unique gorgeous lace and serving haute couture. It has a vast array of luxury lace fabric that is adorned with Swarovski, pearls, beads, sequins, cords and lot more valuable embellishment. It is made by Leavers loom of the 19th century which is intricately patterned to last details. It is used by all top notch designers to bedeck bridal dresses and party wears. It is a boon for ethnic wear designers. collections is a worldwide supplier of lace fabrics by Riechers Marescot. It has 6 premium category of this type. Various colors, patterns, and quality are available here. The adornments and yarn make the difference in price. Not just fabric you can also get different accessories, trimmings, and buttons here. All exclusive brands and yarns are in their stock.

Types of Lace Fabric
There are 6 major types of lace. Based on its design and pattern it is differentiated into such types:- 
  • Chantilly Lace It has fine ground, pattern is well outlined and it has abundant of details. Cordonnet outlines the pattern in a flat strand that is untwisted. One of the best lace collections of Tissura is Chantilly lace of opal rose riveting pattern. Little blooms are tied with fine high-quality thread for ornamentation of the fabric. It is durable and ever remains fresh with a new like look.
  • Corded Lace Fabric – Its another name is Alencon fabric named after a French town. The heavy corded or delicate thread patterns are stitched together tightly on a base fabric of sheer illusion which makes the design like appliqué.
  • Embroidered lace - Heavy embroidery work is done on lace which is then stitched with the apparel. The high delicate design itself is ornamentation.
  • Knit Lace – It is knitted with thin yarns and has nice patterns. Floral, diamond, check and geometric patterns are predominant in knitted lace.
  • Brocade Lace – Silk, gold, silver, zari and rich decorative materials are used to embellish it. It is used in high-quality royal dresses.
  • Eyelet Lace – It is light in weight and has small pierced holes and with floral or dot-like patterns.

Evening gowns, bridal dress, Western wear, luxury lingerie and lot more are made of it. Lace is an everlasting fashion that is gratifying women’s luxury wear.