Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Life Lately - Blog Changes and Update

As usual I want to start of with something motivational! We can get so caught up in life and everything around us and we forget about the important things. It is important to focus on yourself and make yourself a priority. As a self proclaimed people pleaser I need to remind myself of this on a regular basis. Once self love is established you no longer allow yourself to be surrounded by toxic people who bring you down. 

My last post was in Ramadan, and here I am, way past 2 Eids later trying to figure out how to get back to consistent posts. It's not that I no longer want to write but more so feeling as though I need to revamp the appearance and structure of it. It is way too basic for my liking. I am no expert at graphics but the layout needs to change for me to become passionate about it again. That is something I will be working on soon! My blog will start incorporate more social justice issues and fashion moving forward, though I want to still be able to share bits of my life as well as thoughts and rants. I realize that it is unorganized and all over the place but I hope that in time with the visual changes and organization it will begin to flow. 

Life lately - Back in school after a summer of working and having a lot of fun. I am looking forward to getting back into routine and adding my blog back into my life. Changes coming soon! :)

Pictures from my amazing summer:

                                                    Eid Ul-Adha 2k16


Blue Jays game

Summer 16 Tour (OVO Fest)

Sunday, June 26, 2016

What is Ramadan?

When I started my blog I promised myself that I wouldn’t neglect it…whoops. The past few months have been busy and stressful and I regret not keeping up with my writing as it probably would have helped me cope with life. Writing is therapeutic for many people including myself but lately retail therapy has been my therapy of choice (haha). 

I am coming on here to say Ramadan Mubarak! I would do this when we only have 10 days left but I really wanted to write a Ramadan post. 

I first wanted to write about the basics of Ramadan in case any of you reading are unaware or unsure about the definition! 

Ramadan is the name of a month in the Islamic calendar that is significant to Muslims due to daily fasting. Muslims abstain from food and drink, as well as sexual activity from dawn until sunset. Refraining from sins such as backbiting and swearing is also a part of fasting. Extra worship, recitation of the Quran and good deeds such as helping others and charity are highly encouraged. 

Fasting is not “starving yourself”. The body may be physically empty but there is emphasis on feeding the soul. There is so much hatred going on in the world where cruel individuals that have no compassion towards others are committing crimes with religion as an excuse. The world needs more love and respect for humanity. That topic needs it’s own post because of how much I could go on about it. I am mortified on how people can have it in their hearts to harm others like that. This is the time of the year where I feel that while we are abstaining from food we should put the rest of ourselves in perspective. How can we become better people and spread positivity and acceptance? Taking out cursing and gossiping from our language can be encouragement to say a kind word or do a nice gesture. It starts with ourselves and the little things we can do to bring more love into the world. 

I was on instagram yesterday and I read this quote (if you have read my blog before you know my quote obsession) by Nashiha Pervin who is on Youtube. I wanted to share it because of how beautifully written it was and how much it resonated with me. 

"You start to realize that not eating food or drinking water isn't the hard part. By subtracting food and wanter from our systems, all we're left with are our conscience, our habits and our inner most thoughts. And to some of us, what's sub conscience is one of the scariest, most terrifying things to face. Allah unveils everything to us about ourselves this month, that was left under a cover the entire year. And fasting and observing Ramadan is like Him saying "Face yourself, forgive yourself, so that I can forgive you." 

How beautiful was that? She is such a beautiful writer! This is how I personally relate to Ramadan and what I want to get out of it this month. 

We are all flawed, and once we face that and forgive and accept ourselves we can love who we are and spread love to other people. I don't mean to sound repetitive and I am aware that the topics I choose to write about have a similar theme, but this what I relate to and struggle with. If I can help even one person in anything I choose to share it is worth it for me. 

I hope we all are able to make the most out of the last 10 days of this blessed month! 

Lots of love :) <3 

Friday, April 15, 2016

How to: No-Makeup Makeup

What is no-makeup makeup?

 The definition varies for different people. For some it might be just that - wearing no makeup while adding a bit of moisturizer and lip balm, for others it might be a bit more. The upcoming warmer weather is the perfect time to try our this fresh faced look. The no-makeup makeup look for me is all about giving myself the look of subtle enhancement as I am a makeup girl and would rather wear a bit than go without it completely. Today I am going to share with you an extremely easy way to get this timeless look that anyone can do. This is perfect for beginners who don't know where you start.  Plus you can achieve this look with just 3 products!

1) Concealer - 

My lifesaver product that I can't live without. Weather I'm going for a glamorous look or not, no one needs to know that my dark circles have dark circles. If you have any discolouration or an uneven skin tone concealer will help in covering it so your complexion looks even. If you have a lot more of it than just one area a light foundation or tinted moisturizer will help you out even more. The number one part of this look is the base makeup. Once your skin looks even and radiant you can go on to the next step. 

Some of my go to everyday concealers that would work well with this quick look are: Maybelline fit me, Revlon photo ready, and Nyx HD concealer.

2) Bronzer - 

We naturally do not have flat and dull looking skin that is all one even colour. To add balance and a hint of natural colour adding bronzer across your cheeks will add the perfect amount of shade. The sun kissed glow will add to the fresh faced look you are trying to achieve. 

The bronzer I use for this look is Benefit's Hoola bronzer.

3) Mascara - 

Emphasis to the eyes is the final step. Adding mascara will give you an awake, wide eyed look as it frames your eyes and brings out your natural features. The definition to the lashes is the final step of this no makeup makeup look!

My favourite mascaras for this look are Loreal Voluminous Carbon Black and Maybelline Lash Sensational.

Thank you for reading! :) 

Monday, April 11, 2016

#MondayMotivation with Maryam - Week 6

Hey everyone! :) 

Quote of the week :

I thought this was the perfect quote for my #MondayMotivation this week as a lot of students (like myself) are trying to get through school right now. I did miss writing this post last week (sorry) but I will try to keep up with the series! Good luck to everyone that has exams right now! 

This quote is important as we all need to have dreams and aim high. Setting goals for life is just the first step before working hard everyday in order to make them happen. We need to have the desire to accomplish what we want from life and not let our minds stop us from doing so. We tend to be our own worst critics when we should also be our own greatest motivators. We need to believe in ourselves and our capabilities to do accomplish our dreams.  

When we start to doubt ourselves it stops us from even trying. The fear of not getting our desired results is what hinders ourself from trying. It is actually worse than the failure itself! This is because when we get into our heads and worry about the possible future we build fear and anxiety. That gets in the way of wanting to accomplish our dreams as we stop believing that we can or fear the possibility of it going wrong. If trying leads to failure it can actually be healthy for you as the experience teaches lessons that nothing else can.

 You learn from the failure and move on to do better for yourself. Life is all about trying new things and you will probably not succeed in all of them. Trying hard and getting ourselves back up when it doesn't work out is what often leads one to where they are supposed to be. No one that gets up everyday and works hard towards their dreams will remain unaccomplished. Success is never easily accomplished but when it comes after failure it always feels so much better! 

Thank you guys for reading! :)

Thursday, April 7, 2016

My Hijab Story

School needs to end so I can focus more on my blog! I didn't want to let a week go by without posting anything so here is something I wrote for another website. Hope you enjoy it! 

As a young girl I was blinded by the world of beauty. To be honest I don’t know where it came from, I just remember being as young as 4 years old praying to God that I would grow up to be beautiful. I would look at older girls who would do their hair and wear lipgloss and couldn’t wait for the day I could be like them. My mom was always super strict about our appearances, she didn’t want us to look or act older than we were. She tried her best to keep my sister and I away from fashion and makeup. The more I wasn’t allowed to express that side of me the more I wanted it.

The summer I was going into middle school my mom said that I was growing up and that I needed to wear the hijab. I ignored her and hoped she forgot about it when the first day of school came around. I was already extremely shy, quiet and insecure and throwing on the hijab on top of that did not seem like anything I ever wanted to do. It was the first day of the 6th grade and I wanted to impress my new classmates. I had gotten a new pink and white stripped off the shoulder top as a gift from an older girl I looked up to and I couldn’t wait to wear it. I woke up that morning excited and nervous about the new school, I was in middle school! Pretty much about to become one of those older girls I had always wanted to be. Sure enough before I left the door my mom asked where my hijab was. I almost got away with it, I thought. I was always an obedient girl and my mom was always firm on her decisions. As upset as I was I never questioned her.

I felt a weight on my heart as I wrapped the hijab around my head. “I look so ugly” was all I thought that day. I remember walking in to my new classroom and I sat beside a girl I knew from my old school. She pretended as though she did not know who I was. Later in the day she asked if she knew me. No one else really said anything about my new look but I didn’t feel good about it. When I was questioned about why I wore it I didn’t have an answer. “I  don’t want to be wearing it” I would think to myself.I stuck to myself and my small group of friends the next year and a half and continued the battle with my confidence. It was around the end of my 7th grade year when I befriended a very popular girl. I had always admired her confidence and beauty and saw how all the boys drooled over her. Being insecure and young that is all I wanted. My hijab slowly started going away. By the 8th grade it was gone. I had a new group of friends and was always trying to fit in with the popular crowd. All I cared about was my appearance and male attention. It took a while for me to realize how insignificant that really was.

That part of my life was filled with peer pressure and being constantly let down in my friendships. I felt as though I was lonely and never at peace. I was constantly hurt by the people around me why was I trying to hard to please them? The summer before high school I decided that I didn’t want to go to the same school as my former classmates. I wasn’t happy and I wanted a new start. I started going to an Islamic school that taught the Quran in depth. It was then when I developed my relationship with Allah. This was done on my own terms. I studied the Quran with translation, context and meaning. I learned about all the sacrifices that were made in the life of the Prophet (SAW) for the Muslims to be able to exist in peace. I learned the true meaning of life and why we were placed on this earth.
This life is fleeting and temporary and the life of the hereafter was the everlasting one. A place where there would be no end, no hurt, no loss or heartbreak. Allah was there for me when no one else was and He will always be there for me. Why should I let myself be validated by any other human being when the only validation I needed to feel content was from God? I was 15 when I started wearing the hijab again, and it will never come off inshaAllah. I have continued to struggle with my confidence and make mistakes - I am nowhere near perfect. That is okay because I can always come back to Allah and He will never let me down.

Thank you for reading! :)

Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Social Media Obsession - Survival in the Digital World

We are presently living in the digital world. Constantly updating statuses, posting tweets, and uploading pictures. Distracting our brains from what is really going on around us. I am as guilty of this as anybody. I have an obsession with my phone and laptop, I have trouble staying away from them for prolonged periods of time. By doing this we aren't letting ourselves fully live in the present. Whether it be putting out content for the world to see ourselves or scrolling through feeds to see what other people are doing. We feel the need to share everything we are doing at all times. Besides the sharing aspect there is communication with other people. The majority of our communications have become via text messages or other forms of internet communication. Nowadays the distractions are plenty, almost every social media platform has an option for private messaging. Gone are the days where we have to plan in advance to meet up at specific locations in order to catch up with real conversation. It is so much easier if we just text or talk on the phone right? As convenient as the phone and social media is, a problem arises when we become reliant on them. The majority of us have fallen in this trap. 

My friend and I were observing our own friend group who can’t sit at a dinner without snapchatting or looking around and seeing someone on their phone texting during a conversation, we’ve become obsessed! If this is how we are living our lives, not in the present but through the digital world how is that healthy for our mental state and social life? I have read that our generation lacks empathy because we don’t have to look at each other and have real conversations in the present. This in turn detaches us from feelings and emotions towards each other.  How can we teach ourselves to live our lives in the digital world while living in the present? Although it is not possible for us to disengage from online activity completely, there are a few things we can do in order to keep ourselves at least semi-sane! 

Balance - It is fun to snapchat or instagram pictures of our present activity, but maybe not everyday. We should try and keep a balance between sharing our lives and keeping aspects of it private. The more we get in the habit of this the less obligated we will feel to showcase every second. 

Putting phones away during dinners - This is going to be a hard one. I want to be more present in my everyday life in general. I feel as though I am always on my phone even when I could be spending time with my family or being productive. We need to learn to keep up engaging conversations and allowing ourselves to look at our phones during them does not help. Maybe everyone should put away their devices and talk to each other! I love those signs that say "No wifi, talk to each other". Even though I'm the first one who would wonder what kind of place doesn't have wifi - guilty.  

Social media cleanse - I've heard people go about doing social media cleanses differently. Some do it occasionally while others incorporate it into their everyday lives. It may be different depending on lifestyles and work but it is a good thing to take part in. For me I think taking out at least an hour out of my day to put away my devices is possible. While an hour sounds like nothing, knowing that I have not allowed myself internet access is the part I struggle with. I have become to accustomed to doing it without thinking that I need this break in my day to remind myself of what is really important. I would like to try a whole day without the internet in the summer after school is done and see how it benefits me. 

It is all about reminding ourselves who and what is actually important and where we need to invest our time. I hope these ideas helped! Please comment and share your thoughts and ideas. Thank you as always for reading! :) 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Coconut Oil - Best Beauty Product!

I initially decided to write about my top 5 beauty tips today, that clearly didn't happen. As I started jotting down my points for my first beauty tip I decided that I had too much to say and it demanded it's own blog post. This product is tried and true love of my life and I can't go a day without it. What is this magical product? Coconut Oil, the answer to everything! 

There are a million different ways people use coconut oil both for beauty and cooking purposes. I am going to share the ways I use it in my everyday life. First of all if you don't own a bottle of unrefined extra virgin coconut oil, you need to right now. It is affordable, easily accessible, and you will find a use for it. 


The first way I use it is as a face mask when I want to deeply moisturize my skin. I went through a phase of slathering it on my face every single night because I was obsessed with how my skin looked and felt in the morning. If you have extra dry skin you can get away with using it as a nightly moisturizer! It is more hydrating than any moisturizer you can buy at the store and its moisture is able to deeply penetrate your skin. If you feel as though it is too heavy for your face you can use it very lightly or add a few drops to your regular moisturizer to add that extra boost of hydration. It doubles as an eye cream when you add a layer under your eyes! I love doing this before bed as it gives the area the moisture it needs for a flawless concealer application the following morning.  

It is an amazing body moisturizer as well. My legs suffer from extreme dryness in the winter and this product is the only thing that stops the nasty flakiness and itch. 

Another way I use it is as a makeup remover. Stop spending money on all these makeup removing products! This oil will take it all off. From the foundation to the water proof mascara it decomposes the products when you rub it on the skin. All you need to do is wipe or wash it off and it leaves you with a clean face. Even after you go over it with cleanser to wash your skin you still get the light feeling of moisture from the oil. It does an amazing job and is really easy to use. You can't go back to any other form of makeup remover! 

My hair is on the drier side as it is naturally more curly. I struggle with the annoying frizziness that comes along with it. Coconut oil was obviously the answer all along. I use it as a deep conditioner drowning my hair in it and washing it out after a few hours. No store bought deep conditioner can compare. I also mix a few drops in with my regular conditioner, my hair needs all the hydration it can get. When I need to tame frizz I take a few drops and run it through my dry ends. 

Out of shaving cream? Don't buy a new one...ever! Coconut oil does an amazing job at taking it's place. You get the benefit of giving your legs the extra hydration from it too! 

These are just some of the many uses for this miracle product. I highly recommend trying it for yourself! 

Thanks for reading! :)