beauty secrets

Week 16: I am BLONDE! Haircare tips and my blonde experience.

Photo of Ulia Ali and her haircare tips.

I promised I would write about my first dyeing experience and share some hair beauty secrets, and here is the awaited post! I also wrote about my favourite makeup and fashion finds in July in the Insta-Shop section.

As I mentioned in this post, my new blonde look is a masterpiece created by NYC based Turkish hairstylist @asilsmsk, who currently works at the Val El Salon and Spa. I was afraid my blonde ombre would look too yellow-ish or that a dye would damage my hair, but so far my hair is super soft and the colour is perfect. It is noteworthy that I showed Asil a few different photos of what I liked and he came up with something that suited my vision, while also complimenting my feautures. As a side note, this post IS NOT promoted in any way and I am just genuinely recommending Asil to any woman who finds herself in NYC. Since I did not work with any other stylists or have any other services done, I can't specifically recommend anything else at the salon.

I have always loved my long light brown hair and I was terrified to dye it or cut it short. During hot summers my hair would also get really beautiful natural highlights. Oftentimes it looked like I dyed my hair even though I did not, and people would ask me the name of my colour. However, in the last few months I have started to crave a new look, and I am happy I finally gave in.

In this post I will sharea few of my favourite hair products, both for coloured and "virgin" hair, so everyone can benefit from this article.

1. My miracle Coconut Oil and Manuka Honey mask. 

Мой отзыв о маске из кокосового масла и меда Мануки! Здоровые блестящие волосы.
Sleek shiny hair

This mask is seriously my secret weapon. I am too lazy to apply the coconut oil /manuka honey mask often, but whenever I do, my hair feels incredibly soft, shiny, and healthy afterwards.

Here is the recipe:

1 Tablespoon of Raw Manuka Honey (I also love this shampoo with Manuka)

3 Tablespoon of Coconut Oil (I use cold pressed coconut oil and 3 tablespoons because my hair is quite long)

Slowly heat honey and coconut oil in a small pan and stir it before it forms into a mass. Do not raise the temperature as you melt your mask! It is important to keep the heat low at all times  in order to preserve the nutrition in the manuka. After it's all melted, wait a little bit for it to slightly cool down (but make sure it is still warm!) and apply to your wet or dry hair. Massage into your roots and make sure you apply the mask generously on your split ends as well. 

Many people suggest that you keep the mask on for half an hour, but I usually tie my hair up, cover it with a plastic bag (don't laugh! :)), wear an old scarf on top (any beanie hat you are not afraid to ruin works as well) and wait at least 3 hours before I wash it out. Make sure you wash your hair thoroughly as it will naturally be very oily. It feels super gross while you have this mask on, but afterwards you will enjoy the results.

Don't do it when your boyfriend/husband is around. I usually wait until I am home alone. ;)

2. It's getting hot in here.

Never forget to protect your hair from your blowdryer and irons. I haven't found my one holy grail heat protection product, but currently I am protecting my hair with:

TRESemme Thermal Creations Heat Tamer Protective Spray

JOHN FRIEDA Frizz Ease serum that I apply only on wet hair.

3. Jose Eber Curling Iron

Ulia Ali wearing white lace dress from ASOS.
Ulia Ali with Snapchat filters on :)

I get asked all the time about how I curl my hair. My hair is naturally straight, so when I was a teenager I used rollers overnight to wake up to perfect curls. I think that saved my hair from a lot of damage since irons can really destroy your hair. But a few years ago I found a Jose Eber curling iron in Selfridges (London, UK) and I cannot live without it now!

I believe the Jose Eber iron is one of the safest and fastest at curling on the market. It usually takes me no more than 10 minutes to style my hair. My mum and auntie also use Jose Eber straighteners and they are amazing. I cannot wait to get a straightener for myself too as it makes hair look sleeker and shinier.

My tangle-teezer

4. Favourite Hairbrush

I am a loyal user of Tangle Teezer. Nothing compares to this wonderful hairbrush! 

5. What do I wash my hair with?

I like Bumble and Bumble hair products even though they are relatively pricey. However, after I dyed my hair I switched to an Australian brand Evo (this and this one in particular).

6. Volume up!

My hair often lacks volume, therefore I consider myself somewhat of an expert in volumizing products. I used the Got2B powder that everyone raves about for a couple of years, but now I have switched to the John Frieda spray and a volumizing dry shampoo by Sexy Hair. I feel the Got2B powder works really well, but I had a problem distributing it evenly over my hair and felt like sometimes it gave me a white-ish “covered with flour" look.

Dry shampoo works so much better for me and gives my hair a really impressive boost in volume. :) I have this limited Marilyn Monroe edition, but I think there is no difference in the formula if you buy a regular volumizing dry shampoo by Sexy Hair

You can see in this photo that my hair had natural ombre highlights. It was beautiful, but I am still happy with my new look! Changes are always fun.

You can see in this photo that my hair had natural ombre highlights. It was beautiful, but I am still happy with my new look! Changes are always fun.

Last summer my hair was super long! 

Last summer my hair was super long! 

Please let me know if you have any questions or if you want more product recommendations! I am happy to help and will always answer your requests and questions on our Facebook Page.

Week 13: Grace Kelly. 5 Summer Beauty Weapons

Summer is in full reign and it’s about time I share some of  Grace Kelly's and my own beauty secrets as well as some hot-weather essentials.

1. Must Have Box

Firstly, I would like to start with subscription boxes. I have been curious about beauty and fashion surprise boxes since I was living in London. One of my best friends, Ania Pawlak, who now has her own blog, Beauty Obsessed, had been getting some of the boxes when we were living together and it was always fun opening them with her.

Special Edition Resort Box by  Popsugar . 

Special Edition Resort Box by Popsugar

Subscription boxes are so popular because they give you a sense of excitement every time you open a freshly delivered package filled with surprise goodies. There is always some great product by some brand you have never heard of, cute things you would never try otherwise, or something that you didn't even know you needed.

One of the most beloved subscription boxes in the US is Popsugar Must Have. They  not only have makeup and beauty products, but lifestyle and decor items as well. I was thrilled when Popsugar selected me to be one of the bloggers to review their June box. To be honest, I completely forgot about it until this morning when I woke up to a package. It felt like Christmas!

The June Box has 7 items, including a card game, a very sparkly nail polish, deodorant wipes (I didn’t know such a thing even existed!), a sarong, and a very cute bottle opener. Here are the pictures of the surprise items that arrived in my Popsugar Must Have Box.

Why we love Subscription Boxes
Popsugar subscription Box June
Games Room, Who am I game
Cute bottle opener gift

Check their website to see "inside" previous boxes. Each one is so different and has a great curated collection of items. It is great that you can get a box of fabulous goodies for a fixed monthly price and get items triple the value or even more. So you don't have to worry if there is something you don't actually need.

Let me know if you have ever used a subscription box service. I would love to hear about your experience.

2. Hand cream

Grace Kelly was obsessed with keeping her hands moisturised and always had a little hand cream in her purse. She revealed that it was one of her most important beauty secrets and that "a woman's age shows on her hand much quicker than anywhere else."

Following her advice, I do actually keep a tiny pack of hand cream in my purse and a big one on my bedside table. My favourite small one is Magic Food Banana Hand Milk by Korean brand Tony Moly. It not only has the cutest packaging but smells absolutely delicious and is quite cheap. I get my Korean beauty supplies in a Tony Moly shop in NYC, 35 W 32nd St, Korea Town.

3. Self-tanning

Princess Grace of Monaco is famous for her beautiful fair skin, but not a lot of people know she loved spending time on the beach and swam a lot to keep her figure slim. Grace knew the importance of keeping her skin hydrated and protected from the sun with lotions with higher SPF.

Grace Kelly on a beach and pool

I naturally have very pale skin as well, but I don't think it suits me. I just simply prefer to be tanned. It was easy to get a beautiful bronze glow when I was living in Miami, but now in New York I have to use self-tanners.

Here are my favourite self-tanners I currently use:

4. Fabulous Floaties

Cute fun floaties! Swans, donuts and pizza floaties in pool

Ok, not really a beauty secret, but a fun, bright float is a serious summer 2016 essential if you have a pool or a beach nearby. It adds fun to your tanning process and also looks great in pictures.

5. Lipstick

I am wearing Anastasia Beverly Hills in Dusty Rose.

I am wearing Anastasia Beverly Hills in Dusty Rose.


Grace Kelly didn't wear much makeup, especially on hot summer days, but she almost never forgot to put on lipstick. She preferred bright red and dark rosy hues.

I, on the other hand, have never been a huge lipstick fan, but during one of my visits to Sephora, I tried Anastasia Beverly Hills Liquid matte lipstick and fell in love. So many beautiful colours to choose from and, most importantly, it stays on for hours without feeling gross on my lips like most lipsticks tend to.


So there are my 5 summer 2016 beauty weapons inspired by my latest purchases and Grace Kelly's own beauty secrets. Do you enjoy reading beauty posts? Let me know in the comments!