Photo Diary| Like a Tourist: Getting (almost) lost in Ikeja (Lagos, Nigeria)

Hi guys!

It's been two weeks! This is the longest I've been away since I took my consistency vow. It was actually just supposed to be one week which turned into two (I sort of fell ill) and here we are.

So I sort of got lost the other day  around Ikeja. 

If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know I was a wedding guest last Saturday. The cab that was supposed to drop me at Seyi's sister's wedding "mistakenly" dropped me off at the wrong place and refused to take me back. I actually had to take deep breaths to remain calm and not get pissed. I tried finding my way on foot and then decided to take random pictures of the sights.

I find Lagos to be a very charming city although this wasn't always this case. The smells, the people, the lifestyle just makes for a very hectic existence but hidden within are some very pleasant moments.

Some women leaving their owambe locations, well dressed for the occasion

Ikeja is one of the "good" places in Lagos. The part I was wandering about was serene with beautiful architecture, clean good roads and people that minded their business. You'll surprised at how nosy Lagosians can get sometimes.

So we'll start off with a picture that includes one of our staples- Yellow.

Somewhere in the world, a very satisfied "Seun Owolabi" is probably happy knowing fully well that he (or she) has made his (or her) mark on the world. Or on this wall, depending on how you see things. I surprised there wasn't a "was here" to complete the message.

Does the fact that I was sad that there were no grammatical errors on this make me a bad person? Hmm, I wonder if they are actively looking for the "Seun Owolabi" from the previous picture?

I was excited to see that I actually got someone crossing in this. Pretty cool hun? Oh and I guess Fashola (the former governor) actually succeeded in making Lagos green. I scarcely noticed before.

This building. Enough said.

Regardless of how nice this picture is, the sun that made it lovely was very hot and I could feel my skin sizzling. Literally.

Ha ha. By this time, I didn't need a sign to tell me to. I was tired and in my mind, I kept asking "Are we there yet?" "Are we there yet?"

(We= me, myself and I, just in case you were wondering.)

After a very long time, I reached my destination but the food had finished. I was so pained. After all the stress, no jollof rice? *insert weeping emoji*

In about 10-20 minutes, the wedding ended and I had to leave anyways. So instead of jollof rice, I got an amazing sunset. Everywhere was pink and orange!

I am in love with this Keke picture! This is probably the best picture I've taken so far.

And a kind soul volunteered to take a picture of me (the guy in the sunset picture above). So many straps though. 

It got really dark so I decided to jump on the bus (which wouldn't have taken me to the wrong place by the way) and went back to school.

Moral lesson: When life gives you lemons, slice them up, put them on a plate, add a fashion magazine, some accessories and make a flatlay. Then post it Instagram.

What would you have liked to see more of? Do you like this series? 
Leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you!

Cheers! xx

P. S: Please don't use any of the pictures above without my permission or without giving credit by linking back to this post or tagging me on social media, thanks.

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Life Adventures: September '16 Recap & Favourites

I'm  not even going to comment on how this month went like a blur.

September used to be one of my favourite months. The feeling of going back to school to see friends and so on. I'm just here wishing and praying for the year to end.

 On to other things (because I already broke down this topic in my previous end of summer days post),I decided to do a "monthly favourites" post format this time to switch things up. I will still be using the "taking stock" format too.

September felt like a frantic repeat of August to be honest. At some point, I was basically just going through the motions and trying to keep up with everything around me. But I did enjoy some parts. Without further ado, here are my September faves:

-Favourite Fashion item: These shoessss.

 Found them at Ojuelegba market for 1,500 naira. I was hoping to get a lower deal but with the present state of our economy, ha ha. Bloody unlikely.

-Favourite App: I have two actually.

1. Pics Art! Special thanks to Mide Coker and Seyi Adenowo for insisting it's and epic app. My best feature apart from the fun artistic effects, is the cool filters. I've been using the filters a lot on my Instagram and I'm loving the effects. My fave filters are Dodger and Vibrant. I would love Seafoam too but it's not really part of my Instagram theme (tips on theming your Instagram page right this way). You can check out my Instagram here, I share more about myself on it than any other platform.

2. Teach Me Anatomy: Not blog related I know but I'd recommend this app for every medical student reading this. It helps simplify anatomy. A lot. I'm a physiotherapist in training just in case you were wondering.

-Favourite Food: Rice and beans + Stew. I ate this in September way too many times.

-Favourite Smell: Popcorn? Popcorn!!! To be honest, I think popcorn smells way better than it tastes.

-Favourite Event: I attended only one to be fair but the CAG bloggers forum totally rocked! I wanted to do a review but ended up not doing one so here Lydia's version here.

Also, guess who finally cut her hair? I got tired of managing two different hair textures and my scissors went "chop chop"! Granted, it was 4 months earlier than I planned but you know, spontaneity and all that jazz. It's longer than it looks though.

-Favourite place: Does my room count? It's I get to chill and read books so yea. I think it does.

-Favourite Instagram page: Nope. I'm only slightly obsessed with Instagram. My favourite page was @foodydiy. Oh so yummy recipes. And simple too!

-Favourite Music: I'm just gonna drop her name because I love all her songs. Bic Runga. I found her through a movie, My Wedding and Other Secrets.

-Favourite Blog post: 10 brilliant examples of ways to start your blog post. Content creation is not as easy as it may seem. I googled this up one time I was stuck on an intro to a post and I've referred to it a lot since then.

-Favourite feeling: The feeling I get when I imagine how I'll feel when my exams are over. I kid you not.

And that's it people!

I'm not particularly looking forward to October because of my exams. At this point, mid November is bae because by then, it'll all be over.

Do you like this format? What were your September favourites? Leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you.

Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest and Bloglovin'.

Wishing you a spiffing month ahead, Cheers!xx

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What We Wore: End of Summer Days Look Book

It'll be October very soon.

This will mark the beginning of fall, which is basically a non-existent season in Nigeria. Unfortunately. I sometimes long for the need to wear knee-high boots and cashmere sweater dresses that hit about two to three inches above my knees.

Summer represents fun and colour, happiness, sunshine and what not. Seeing as Nigeria is hot all year round, I'll be assuming that the "fun vibes" stem from the summer vacation syndrome. You know, the whole "Yay! Nothing  serious to do for about 2 to 3 months!"? Or may be that's just for students. Do people who werk a 9 to 5 have summer vacays? Just realized I have no idea.

I have had a slightly depressing summer. This is probably because I had no summer holiday. I so looked forward to my November holiday thinking Yay! I can finally have my fun summer aaaand POP! I just found out that even was scrapped (2 weeks doesn't count). How did I become the person with no holidays? Oh School, how could you do this to me? 

I remember back in high school, I anxiously waited for the holidays to be over so I could get back to the routine that was my life and hang out with my friends that I could count on only one hand. Now, I am surrounded by friends, a less routine life but hardly any "chill" moments.

I don't even know how to chill. Watch a movie? That's my go-to. What fun things could a person who's been accused one too many times of being boring do? Fun to me is eating foods I love. Fun to me is reading books I love. Being around my friends and having silly, meaningless conversations is my definition of fun.

Summer is fun. Summer is a splash of colours. Summer is a state of mind I guess. #SummerForever

Photography by: @njcworks 

Look 1: 
Dresses: @frucheofficial
Sandals: @tac_sandals
Hats: @theweavehatcompany
Glasses: @mimiis_store

Look 2: 
Dress and matching set: @osuareng
Sandals: @tac_sandals
Hats: @theweavehatcompany
Glasses: @mimiis_store

Look 3:
Shirts: @davidblackmoore
Shorts: @njcworks
Glasses: @mimiis_store

  The shoot is with the Lovely Praise of My Style Look Book Series who has fastly become one of my best blogger buddies and Iju of of New Jerusalem Creations. Totally check her out! She's the genius behind this lookbook.

Your thoughts on this lookbook? Summer? Life recently? Leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you!

Cheers! xx

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How To Edit Your Instagram Pictures To Perfection (Plus, How To Theme Your Page)

Let's face it. We are an image-obsessed generation. We are vain and we do not care, hence Instagram's (still rising) success. We might as well accept that. *shrugs*

Now that that's out of the way, I noticed a lot of people struggle with the Instagram hustle (it is indeed a hustle, especially for bloggers and photographers) and I had been getting questions on how I edit my Instagram photos, what apps I use, what the best editing apps are and how to theme an Instagram feed. I decided to cover everything in one post.

Disclaimer: I'm not a pro of any sort and I have just about 3k followers so I know that doesn't make me an authority. I do have some helpful tips though so keep reading.

Before we go on, can we just take a moment to appreciate how consistent I have been lately? *wipes tears* It's been difficult but you know, September goals. Oh and get prepared. Since we're discussing a visual platform, this is going to be a very "visual" post. Only necessary pictures, I promise.

Ok so, a few things first:

-Editing a picture isn't like waving a magic wand:

You have to have a good picture in the first place whether you're  using a camera or a phone. For more tips on using a phone to get good quality pictures, read this post. 
I didn't cover outfit pictures in that post so here a few pointers:

1. Make sure you take the picture from below or least holding the camera in front of your torso. It balances your height out. Taking pictures from above could make you look weird unless it's intentional of which you'd have to make it work and look artistic.

2. Try taking your pictures in front of a wall. You'd have a clean background and seeing as phone cameras can hardly do a shallow depth of field (the blurry background effect) from a distance, your backdrop might end up looking weird and grainy but in front of a wall, you're in focus.

3. Avoid direct harsh sunlight. Your picture would probably end up being washed out and overexposed. At least my phone does this. Shout out to all the epic phone cameras that make the Instagram hustle easy. 

-Know what style you're going for with your Instagram.
The key to having a cohesive theme is making all your pictures look similar in terms of style.
Here are few Instagram pages for example..

@mark_kotun's page is very... artsy & contemporary a.k.a deep (which is the only term I can seem to find to describe floating hats and floating bodies). This style requires a very creative mind so...

@prettysickly has a lovely "white-wash" theme that features fashion and lifestyle pictures (#ootds, cute dogs pictures, flatlays and food pictures *yum*)

Lastly, @ellerese' page is a mix of fashion and deep "artsyness" (Yea, I can make up my words. Guess whose blog it is? : D ) I like that it sort of looks like a personal page too and yes, I'm sort of a fangirl.

So on to what editing apps to use?

Best editing apps

To be honest, with this editing thing, to each man his own. However, my top 4 editors are:

-Snapseed: The king! 
I can already see vsco users snickering in my mind. Like I said, to each man his own. I like snapseed because it allows to me to tweak a lot of stuff and it's very easy to use. It doesn't just use "icons" to represent stuff assuming I would know what the "icon" represents. 

Okay, maybe that was a bit much. Anyway, another thing I really like snapseed for is it's "selective" feature. You can select any specific part of a picture you want and edit the brightness, contrast and saturation of that area. I particularly use this to remove weird shadows (more on that in a moment) and edit over saturated areas in my pictures.

-Vsco: Lol. I can hate all I want but it's still a pretty good, okay, pretty awesome editor. The filters are pretty cool and in one click (tap? selection? press?), you could achieve an awesome picture as opposed to Snapseed where you'd have to try a lot of stuff before achieving the look you want.

I'm actually thinking of getting the app. I discovered some pretty cool filters on my friend's yesterday so I'm thinking I'll give it another try

-Facetune: A little known app that does wonders especially if you're using a white-wash theme. And whoop! whoop! the android version was released in 2015 (take that you iphone people!). There's a downside though. You have to pay. With the dollar exchange rate right now, it's about 800naira. I think it would be worth it.

-Instagram: A lot of people underestimate the Instagram editing app because it doesn't have "bomb" filters. I use the filters sometimes to tweak my pictures so they look how I want them to look. My best feature on this has to be the "Lux" feature. Helps so much in picture clarity.

Oof. I think this is going to be a long post. My apologies in advance. Now, on to...

How I edit my Instagram Pictures:

I'll be showing three pictures: an outfit picture (taken with a phone), a picture of the sky (taken with a phone) and a picture of my hand (taken with a camera).

 I used snapseed to edit these pictures, although, these days, I've been more open minded in trying and experimenting with new apps. We'll see. There just might be a part 2 or updated version in future.

-To remove odd shadows

After this, I went on to reduce the saturation and overall brightness slightly, reduced the warmth and boom. Ready to post. 

- Edit #ootd post

I mostly use my camera (Sony Dsc-R1) to take my outfit photos but on this day, I was out and about without said camera, so I decided to use my phone.

You could leave yours at the third picture but I decided to tweak it some more with Instagram because the third picture would've stood out from other pictures on my Instagram page.

I love the Juno filter (for phone pictures) because it adds a dramatic contrast and clarity but it's too warm for my taste. I usually just reduce the warmth. I also added the Lux feature for more clarity aaaaand done.

-The Palm tree picture:

I feel like on Instagram, palm trees reign supreme over all forms of nature.

I would've loved the green to show but seeing as it didn't, I decided to focus on making the sky dramatic. I achieved this by using the "drama" filter on snapseed (ha ha).

Over all, I usually just tweak the contrast, brightness, warmth, shadows, highlight and saturation. For tips on how to salvage/fix a (bad) photo, read this post.

And finally! On to the final part...

How to theme your Instagram feed:

The easiest way to do this is to just pick a colour palette that you'd stick to and you'd be fine. Make sure the colours go well together. To understand the concept of colour and understand how to know which colours match and don't, read this post

How beautiful is @kristinadapaah's feed?!! She sticks with white, grey, blue, black, army green and shades of tan. Notice how she makes good use of negative space?  Definitely one of my favourite pages on Instagram!

Another way to theme your feed would be to make sure each picture goes well with previous pictures. Not necessarily in terms of colour. Just make sure there's a "cohesiveness". For example;

Margaret hunay *insert emoji with heart eyes*

Okay, fangirl moment over. Notice how there are a lot of pictures with different concepts and colours but they still make for a smashing page.

And my page. Had to slot this in here somehow : D. You can follow me here

Also, don't post random pictures. Not every picture can go on there. If you're posting a selfie, make sure the selfie matches previous pictures. 

Another way to theme your feed is by your content. 

Notice how almost every picture is "fashion-y". You would assume this is a fashion person, yes? She's a style blogger (love her!). But let there be some variety though. @lynnkimdo does this pretty well. Scrolling through her feed, she has no particular colour scheme (yellows, oranges, purples, blues, pinks, whites, etc). Your  content could be your theme.  

Edit the pictures in a similar way to make a "theme."

I love how @kenenwatu's pictures are all cool (in temperature I mean). Statistically speaking, cool pictures perform better on Instagram.

And it's a wrap!

If you made it to this point, a thousand virtual kisses to you for dealing with excess pictures, terrible puns, unnecessary vsco hate and ridiculously made up words. *blows kisses*

I sincerely hope you found this post helpful/useful. Took a lot of time to compile. Oh and yea, shout out to @tgjonah for requesting this post. 

If you have an tips, questions, suggestions, anything at all, leave a comment, I'd love to hear from you!
Lastly, do your home girl a favour and pin this image on Pinterest, pretty please? 

Pin me

Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest and Instagram, let's connect!

Cheers! xx

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P.S: Other photography posts:

What We Wore: Florals at The Blogger Point Brunch With Wumi Tuase of TANG.

I have quickly learnt that the best place and time for bloggers to do style collaborarions are at events. There, we would already be dressed, on location and shoot ready.

On the 20th of August, the Blogger Point hosted their first bloggers brunch in Lagos and Wumi and I attended along with other awesome people like Grace Gigi, Seyi Adenowo, Tonye Igbani, Moji Ajibona, and Praise Abu to name a few.

We were both wearing floral print coincidentally in black and white so... why not?
If you read my blog resolutions for 2016, you'd have an idea how happy I am that I'm actually collaborating and connecting with bloggers. I just re-read the post and I have to say: so far so good. I'll probably do a follow up post this year.  

Wumi's blog and style is very inspiring and I love her fun, laid-back and very real personality. She also has an online thrift shop with epic clothes and accessories, @thethriftstoreng, and y'all know how much I love frugal, quality prices.

So about the brunch, I was mostly outside, trying my hand at street style photography so I didn't really experience the beginning. I got some cool pictures though so if you're sure I took a picture of you and you would like to have it, drop your email in the comments and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.

I eventually got in and there were a lot of fun conversations going on while  bloggers mingled and chatted. I particularly enjoyed when Noble Igwe told us his success story (with a lot of good jokes slotted in). 

It made me re-evaluate my plans and assured me I was on the right track by taking risks and just generally doing things that make me scared.

Pin this, pretty please?

I'm wearing nude heels( from Nine West), a vintage-y button down dress (thrifted), a choker with my hair pulled up weirdly because my hair got scattered by the wind on the way to the brunch. Oh and is that an anklet I see? *squints* oh well. Was feeling experiment-y that day.

I love how Wumi paired her kimono and jeans combo with a visor hat. I've been thinking about getting one of those. 

This collaboration made me happy and I love how the pictures turned out. A big shout out to Seyi (for taking some of these pictures under pressure) and Grace (for humoring us by taking pictures even though you were feeling down).

I'm slightly excited about the next photography post (coming up on the 18th). It will be on "how to edit your Instagram pictures to perfection" featuring what apps to use, how to theme your Instagram and a step by step tutorial on how I edit my Instagram pictures. You can check out my page here.

Who's excited?

Oh and I'm sorry. There might be no DIYs this month. I promise to do better when school is over. I'm already planning DIYs that I'm sure you guys will love.

Don't forget to follow me on Pinterest and Twitter, let's connect!

Cheers! xx

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6 Pros/Benefits of Having Acne

Hi guys!

Long time no acne jokes/rants/mentions right? If you think this is because it cleared up, you have no idea how far you are from the truth.

Ok so, lots of people hate acne. I have heard many a people have gotten depressed due to acne. Let's shine some light on the matter shall we?

In case you didnt know, ...

Skin condition, usually of the face, caused by the inflammation of sebaceous glands through bacterial infection. Characterised by red pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, etc.

Yes, I don't have the serious kind that would drive people to try drugs, injections and stuff. But, I feel I can relate because I have had acne for a very long time so I have gotten used to it.

So instead of focusing on the negative, we're going to be looking at the silver lining in those dark grey clouds.

Contrary to popular belief there are some pros of acne far-fetched as they might seem to be.

The Benefits

1. Great conversation starter.
Well, you obviously don't walk up to someone and say "Hi, I like your acne!"

You, the "owner" of the acne could use a self-depreciating remark to break the ice in many situations. Like seriously, it just might work. Or not. You never know, depends on your audience.

2. Perfect excuse for not being interested in slapping on full make up.
I'm one of those people who are just not interested in foundation and concealer and the full works. At least not yet. So many people keep asking me "Why don't you wear makeup?"

Before, I'd try to explain that I'm a lipstick and eyeliner kinda person which would of course lead to the "Why?!!!" which is a really dark road filled with odd looks and lots of follow up questions. You don't wanna go there.

These days, I just point at my face with a resigned expression "It's because of my acne" If they still don't look convinced, I add "You know, I don't wanna clog my pores...". They then nod understandingly.

*Dusts hands* Neatly done.

3. You belong to a wide community of understanding fellows
We acne people have to stick together ya know? Plus, there are so many topics you could discuss with a fellow acne sufferer. For example,

Person with acne: Ugh I'm just so tired of acne, so frustrating!

Me: What products have you used?

Person with acne: Lots! Right now I'm using Aleo Vera, honey sugar scrub and other organic stuff.

Me: Yea! I tried the organic way too! The Aleo Vera stuff worked for a while...

And this leads to other cool things and we eventuially become besties.
Another scenerio...
Random person with perfect skin: So... that's a nice plant.

Me: Yea, it's very... uhm... green.

And we both look away. No happy ending there.

4. You get freckles *coughs* spots *coughs*
Freckles? Yes! Freckles! Cute aren't they?

That's right people! We don't need to do anything to get birthmarks and/or freckles unlike some people who use make up (pencils) to draw freckles.

Seriously, I kid you not. It's a thing.

5. You can blame EVERYTHING on acne
No jokes, this works.

"This top would look so much better on me if I didn't have acne."

*Brows not coming out good this morning* "It's because of this stupid acne!"

*Wakes up in a bad mood* "If only I didn't have acne!"

*Hasn't blogged in a while* *blames it on acne*

*Dog dies* *blames it on acne*

*Friends forget you exist then go out and have a smashing time* *blames it on acne*

Trust me, it's a good outlet.

6. At the end you have an inspiring/entertaining/helpful story to tell
I haven't reached my end yet (sadly) so I don't quite have any story to tell except helping people understand the basics of what causes acne and of course writing stuff like this.

However, it's a thought that could keep you going you know. It sort of annoys me when people who've never had acne try to tell me how to go about it.

This simply means that if you eventually want to make "helping pople cure acne" your life's work, you have a good shot because, experience.

So! What other benefits can you think of?

Leave a link, let me know in the comments, I'd love to hear from you!

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter and Pinterest, let's connect!

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