Earlier this year when Eskom made a bold return with load shedding, my friend and I had made plans to link up for some cute daytime plans. We had to postpone on the Saturday no thanks to load shedding - brunch spot closed, WiFi down and with both of us on a service provider that cannot handle Stage 4 load shedding, we couldn't really WhatsApp efficiently.
We tried again on the Sunday - successfully so. But before linking up, we had to postpone for an hour just to allow our phones time to charge. Luckily for me, the dress I had planned to wear didn't require ironing, but my friend, on the other hand, didn't have a single item of clothing that wasn't creased.
She sent me this disclaimer: "Don't laugh at me when you see me. I couldn't iron my clothes because of load shedding."
So that got me thinking; there must be a way around this load shedding thorn in all of our sides when it comes to fashion and beauty.
I mean, I'm already anticipating an evening when I might have to do my makeup in an iPhone torch-lit bathroom and the outcome may look a little something like this:
Or I might leave my place not realising just how incredibly creased my outfit really is.
If only this country understood that mood lighting was just not made for practical day-to-day survival.
Anyway, perhaps it's time we got ourselves a fashion and beauty survival guide seeing as Eskom has switched off the light at the end of the tunnel
Here are our fashion & beauty hacks for when the lights go out:
Forewarned is forearmed
By now you should have a fair idea of when load shedding will occur in your area at least a few hours before it happens. Twitter account @CityPowerJhb is quite handy and reliable for this. I know a few Capetonians said they can't relate, but for those who can, try @CityofCT on Twitter.
Once you have that info, pull out your ironing board and plug in your iron while you still have power.
It doesn't matter if you're not one hundred percent sure about what you're going to wear to work, campus or your interview yet - this is just to help you have your options open.
Have dresses, skirts and blouses in unforgiving fabrics such as linen and satin? Be sure to always keep those ironed during these trying times so you can remain just as crisp-looking as Celine Aargaard.
Cheat day fabrics
There's no doubt that load shedding has ushered in a lot of diet cheat days since we can't always cook when we want to and some of our food spoils in the fridge at least three times a week now. So if we can have cheat days when it comes to meals, we can have wardrobe cheat days too.
If it so happens that you couldn't get some ironing done before a scheduled power outage, best pull out every item in a textured fabric that you have. Textured fabrics don't require ironing, making them very convenient go-to clothes.
Think tweed, pleats, lace, faux leather, denim, knitwear blends, or even consider this an excuse to wear sequins and embellishments for no reason at all.
Temperatures are still fairly warm (despite the rain), so some of these may not always be ideal, but if you don't layer, you should still be alright.
See some leather, sequinned and pleated options below:
Luckily it's box braid season
Protective hairstyles such as braids and cornrows are usually reserved more for winter due to how damaging this season can be on our natural hair. However, now you have even more reason to get braided.
While a lot of people who have gone natural don't necessarily blow dry their hair anymore to avoid further heat damage, there are others who feel inconvenienced by the inability to blowdry their hair when they need to.
Braids, cornrows and well-maintained wigs are all we need to steer clear of bad hair days for as long as there's load shedding in SA.
Lukewarm water is good for your skin, so at least you can now join the skin power circle thanks to Eskom.
According to L’Oréal Paris' head of scientific communications Dr. Rocio Rivera, a lukewarm water temperature "delivers the best skin care results."
L’Oréal Paris' report further highlights that "most skin care products were tested or created with this ideal temperature in mind," adding that "Dr. Rivera also points out that lukewarm water can help ensure that your facial cleanser gets the right amount of foaming action, removes enough dirt from the surface of your skin, and balances your natural skin oils appropriately."
Could this be Michelle Mosalakae's secret?
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For me, a healthy skin care routine is about looking after yourself inside and out. Being mindful of what you put on your skin and what you put into your body. There are many ways to go about doing this of course but my simple go-to tips are: Hydrate yourself ?? , cleanse, tone, exfoliate (2-3times weekly - you can even make a homemade scrub! Just be careful what you add) to get your skin as healthy as possible. The added benefit is that you get to create the right canvas for applying make up to enhance your natural beauty! P.S Don’t sleep with make-up on AND wipes aren’t an excuse for not washing your face?????? ... eye cream is your friend, sunscreen is your best friend ! No matter how much or how little pigment melanin you have, the sun doesn’t discriminate! ????????????????????????
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