Kers Scented Candles

I am completely obsessed with delicious scented candles. I love walking into my home and lighting my scattered candles that then gently waft through my space with their different scents. I have different ones for my different moods, and the occasion – there are some that remind me of my granny, other scents that are fresh and uplifting, and others that are more romantic and musky. Why have just one candle when there are so many options out there?

“The soothing effect that candles have is based on how the brain processes smells. The smell of scented candles stimulates our limbic system, the part of the brain that is home to our memory and emotions. Hormones like serotonin and dopamine can be produced to help regulate mood.  Therefore, our emotional state is influenced by the relationship that exists between scents, memories, and emotions.”

Kendall cornish, travel and leisure

I saw some of the candles that Kers Scented Candles had on offer and I immediately knew that I had found a small business that I would definitely be supporting, and that I wanted to share it with all of you.

Everything within this business has been thought out – from the variety of scents to suit everyone; to the presentation of the actual candles; to the fact that they work with other local business to offer the most gorgeous candles I have ever seen. These are definite decor items, and not simply a candle that you place in the corner of your room and hope that nobody sees.


Keep reading to learn more about Kers Scented Candles

Your name: Francis Victor

Business name: Kers Scented Candle

Social media handles: Facebook and Instagram.

3 fun facts about you:

  • I resigned in October 2019 to be a fulltime Candle Maker.
  • I have 63 House Plants (Yes, there is always room for one more.)
  • I am very happily married to my best friend, Wiehan Victor and we have two Dachshund kiddies named Petrus and Fiela. We are huge F1 fans #verstappen33

What makes your candles so unique:
What makes us unique is that we put a lot of thought, testing and hard work behind the brand to give our customer the best result. For example, we only pour two candles at a time to ensure that the fragrance mixes thoroughly with the wax. Our jars are sophisticated to create a timeless addition to any household décor. We are not holding back with our fragrance, our scented candles are all about transforming any room space into a fragrance oasis. My Grandma had one request with the scented candles and that is to offer refills. It is so sad to have this beautiful jar but no candle to compliment it. Therefore, the customers who are based in the Joburg area can send their jars back for a refill and choose any of the fragrances.

Why did you decide to start this business:
I always had a passion for scented candles and love walking into my home after a long day at work and just enjoying the moment. Everywhere I go, whether overseas or travelling locally, a candle is on my souvenir list.
Our story started three years ago when I had a conversation with my office mamma Clara. I said to her, “One day Clara, we are going to have a candle business.” I did the research, but then life happened. Two years flew by and the more I asked the Big Man Upstairs for guidance the more He directed me to making Candles.

Which scent is your favourite from your range:
This is a difficult one, it feels like I need to pick between my fur-kids. I am burning the sweet grapefruit in my home at the moment, but I have always been a huge fan of the Vanilla fragrance.

Which has been the most popular scent:
It depends on the season, during the winter Vanilla, Sandalwood & Musk, Lavender, and Cinnamon were very popular, however these past couple of weeks the sweet fruity and floral fragrances are number one on the podium. These are the Coconut & Lime, Sweet Grapefruit, Lime & Basil, and Peony and Blush Suede.

What are all the scents you stock: Sweet Grapefruit, Cinnamon, Frangipani, Lavender, Lemongrass, Rose Geranium, Rosemary, Sandalwood, Vanilla, Pomegranate & Sage, Cellini Tobacco, Lime & Basil, Champagne Rose, Deep Ocean, Deep Musk & Spice, Peony & Blush Suede, Coconut & Lime, Tutti Frutti, and Ylang Ylang.

How can people order from you: WhatsApp 060 554 2473 or email scentedkers@gmail.com or send us a direct message on Facebook.

Why do you encourage people to support local:
I love supporting local businesses. We have so much talent here in South Africa. For me, when you do good to people, they will be inspired to do good to other people. Therefore, it is a ripple effect. When I support local businesses, they will be able to support other businesses and it can grow our community and put food on the tables.

When I support local businesses, they will be able to support other businesses and it can grow our community and put food on the tables.

Francis Victor  

We have been working on a new project to support our local crafters. Our new Tswalu range is handmade by Godfrey and his family, and hand poured by Kers Scented Candles. Hence when the customer buys the Tswalu range they support two local businesses.

Do your candles come in different sizes: Yes, we have an Amber 400g and Blue 500g candle. But we also make 330ml candles for corporate gifting and bridal boxes.

Quote you live by: Find Joy In Your Journey.

Anything else you want to add: We are busy working on the website and will hopefully have this up and running soon. I have big dreams for Kers Scented Candles and hopefully one day open a huge store which will be convenient for the customers to come, relax and enjoy the beauty of house plants, amazing candles and just enjoying the moment.


I have always felt like candles make a home. They can evoke memories, help you relax or become uplifted, and create a perfect ambiance for your home and environment. Why not spoil yourself with some of these delicious ones from Kers Scented Candles, and support a local business (and family) at the same time?


Mother’s Love Products

Last week I won a box filled with the most divine cleaning products from “Mother’s Love Products”. These eco-friendly products contain essential oils and no nasties, and also really clean your household to a degree that you expect from our regular store-bought products.

Having all the health issues I have, as well as being involved with many Rare Warriors means that I know first-hand the repercussions of making use of too many chemicals to keep us alive, and the knock on effect that means with multiple other meds needed to counteract the side effects. So if I can choose natural products in my daily life, I will do it!

Ina is passionate about making a difference to the environment, to our homes, and also to our lives in general. And these products are now going to become part of my daily cleaning and house-hygiene. Have you been paying closer attention to what products you are using?


Getting to know Mother’s Love Products

Your name: Ina Baard

Business name: Mother’s Love Products

Social media handles: Instagram, Facebook and Website.

3 fun facts about you: I am a bit of a hermit, but I adore my nieces and nephews – I call them my live entertainment 😃 Before starting Mother’s Love Products, I was an accountant but have always loved to surround myself with pretty things. Starting this business has really allowed me to nurture my creative side.

I have always loved to surround myself with pretty things

Ina Baard, owner of mother’s love products

What makes your products so unique: The beautiful, stylish packaging and labels are pretty enough to display in your home. I never could understand why cleaning products have to come in such ugly packaging. I wanted to give these items some love, and create not only natural but also non-toxic cleaning products. These products would create a sense of occasion when I use them, making me feel as spoiled as I do when I use a luxurious, delicious-smelling body product. All products have an essential oils base, specifically chosen for its cleaning properties, which also leaves your home smelling divine.

Which one product do you think every household needs: My Glass Cleaner with Grapefruit Essential oils is an incredible product- you can literally use it on ANY glass surface, windows, mirrors, your car’s window screen, shower door, glass tables – literally any surface. Some customers use it to clean their drinking glasses and they say it really make it sparkle. You can also use it to clean your computer or tv screen etc (just spray it on a cloth first).

When did you start with your passion for eco-friendly products: I grew up on a farm and then later in life I developed quite a lot of allergies, so my passion for eco-friendly products are both health as well as environmentally motivated, from a young age.

How can people order from you: Online – www.mothersloveproducts.com

Why is the use of non-toxic products so important: It absolutely breaks my heart to see what we do to the earth and the extent of mass destruction we have managed to achieve over the last few decades – just to mention a few – coral grave yards and the number of species that’s now completely extinct. I don’t think I need to say anything else on this topic. It speaks for itself.

How can people start making healthier choices: There are so many ways to make healthier choices. Our grandparents had the whole reduce, re-use thing down to an art. Instead of throwing things away, it got repaired and reused and products were bought for their longevity. Somebody once said to me her grandmother always said they are too poor to afford cheap products. That really spoke to me.

Which is your personal favourite product: Its hard to say, because they are all so good and so suitable for their function, but I think the Glass Cleaner might be my favourite child. I know I am supposed to love them all equally, but that one has got an extra special place in my heart 😉

Quote you live by: I don’t really have a quote to live by, but the above mentioned quote from a friend’s grandmother who said “they are too poor to afford cheap products” has been on my mind lately.


I have absolutely loved trying out these products, and I love the smell that surrounds me as soon as I walk through my front door. I love that I can now know that my choices are healthy for me, my animals, and the environment. And I love that these choices are so easy to fulfill!

Please try to support local businesses whenever possible, and make healthy choices for you and our beautiful South Africa. Choosing Mother’s Love is an easy place for you to start.


To The Bone

Last weekend my friend Maughin and I were off on another #MAndMAdventure around Joburg, and we got to speaking about some of the local businesses that we have blogged about have really stood out for us. She had shared a picture on her story that morning about a business called “To The Bone” and I had been drawn to the image, so I wanted to know more.

Maughin told me about the amazing work that they are doing, and I knew that this was something that I needed to jump on and help create awareness. I’m sure by now you know just how much I love my animals, and I consider them my fur-children. So when I hear about a business like To The Bone that is working so hard to make a difference in the lives of animals around South Africa, I really want to help them to increase their reach and help more animals.

So, read on to see more about why I am now completely obsessed with To The Bone…


Your name: Maryke van Rensburg

Business name: To the Bone

Social media handles: Instagram; Facebook and Website

Some fun facts about you:
I’ve been a vegetarian for almost 20 years.
We have 5 rescue dogs.
If I could live anywhere in the world, it would be Iceland.
Pineapple on pizza is a must!

What is To The Bone:
To the Bone is an online store that does good for the community. The intention of our online store is to incorporate our passion for animals and all living entities into a worthwhile platform.

Thus, when you shop on our online store, a big portion of every sale goes towards a worthy project.

Maryke, to the bone

Since the launch of our online store (November 2020), we’ve already completed three outreach projects and we are currently busy with our fourth one.

Where did the passion to start this project come from:
Most people don’t know, but To the Bone was born during a very traumatic and difficult time for me (probably still is). I’ve been in the animal rescue world for years, unfortunately, I was mauled by a power breed at the end of 2020, I’ve undergone major reconstructive surgeries, most done on my right arm, 5 to date and it is still ongoing.

I wanted to create something that will not only help vulnerable animals but also communities in need. Due to what I’ve been through, something that is very important to tothebone is animal education for the community members.

Our current project is a Kennel Drive in the informal Ocean View community (based in Cape Town, South Africa). The kennels will not only benefit vulnerable animals in need but also the community. This programme is aimed at upskilling youth from Ocean View. We teach them how to build kennels and we also incentivize them for their participation. We also teach the youth about pet education and how to keep their pets safe. After the kennels are build we distribute them to pets and community members in need.

Have you always had a love for animals:
As a child my first word was “Woef” (which means dog in Afrikaans), so yes, I’ve always had a big love for animals, ever since I could remember.

You are running an amazing special currently with your mini pet portraits – please tell me more:
I am actually a qualified artist and I studied BA in Applied Design, specialising in mixed media (photography and illustration). My passion for animals led me into the animal welfare world, but I thought it would be a perfect combination to combine my two passions art and animals and at the same time help to raise funds for animals in need.

Since the dog attack I haven’t been able to take any photo’s (as I can’t lift my camera) or do any drawings, it took me quite a while to be able to move my fingers again and especially to be able to write again. My hand and arm will never be normal again and I am trying to make peace with it. But at last I am able to do illustrations, but not to the extend that I used to be able to, that is why I leaned towards rather doing miniature portraiture, as that is something my arm and hand can handle at this point in time.

How can people get involved in what you are doing:
There are many ways people can get involved.

  1. Simply shop on our online store by following this link.
  2. Donate a kennel or any supplies via our online store by following this link.
  3. Donate any kennel building supplies, pet food/pet supplies or you can donate any second-hand books that we can resell to raise funds for our current outreach project by contacting us.

Why do you love to support local:
Because I think we all need a little bit of help and support from each other, now more than ever.

What is one thing that you want people to think when they hear your name:
I would say: Inspirational, Animal Warrior or Compassionate.

Quote you live by:
“It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” – Vince Lombardi

Anything else you want to add:
We would like to thank all our suppawters. Without them none of the work we do would be possible.


Guys, To The Bone is something that you really want to get involved in.

If you choose to order a mini pet portrait for only R150, or support their book drive, or just want to make a donation towards a cause that is really making a difference; please get in touch with Maryke. The animals need us to work together, and this ultimately means that they will live a better life.

Maryke, you are one in a million. Getting to know you has been such an honour, and I can’t wait to join you through your many fundraising projects.


ellips Hair South Africa

At the beginning of the year TBS Marketing contacted me to ask if I would get involved in a campaign they were running with ellips. I didn’t know too much about them, except that they smelt absolutely divine, but I was excited to learn more and give them a try.

Well, if you haven’t seen my posts on social media already where I have been raving about the products I have been trying, this post is to let you know all about this divine business and the available products. It has helped with my hair loss, and leaves my hair feeling silky soft. They are so easy to use and I always have a few in my handbag for those days when I have forgotten to use one or am battling with flyaway hairs. I didn’t understand the hype around ellips haircare capsules until I tried them for myself, and now I have restocked mine as well as introduced friends to them because I truly do believe in this product and what it can do!

I have been dying to chat to Roxy and let all of you know about this wonderful business, and at last we have managed to make it happen… So keep reading to find out more.


All About ellips

Your name: Roxy Cullinan

Business name: ellips Hair

Social media handles: Website, Instagram and Facebook

3 fun facts about you:

  1. I lived in China – and loved every minute of it!
  2. I love to travel and collect a little bottle of sand from every place I visit. I have them on display in my lounge.
  3. I can make a mean chocolate buttermilk cake with cream cheese icing.

Can you tell me more about ellips: ellips is a range of leave-in Argan oil based treatment capsules, serums, hair masks and a leave-in conditioner. I discovered the product in Bali five years’ ago when I was there on holiday and brought a bunch back as gifts for my family. Everyone fell in love with them and we decided to start importing them as a family business. I’m the creative behind ellips, however, my uncle is the CEO.

What is your personal favourite product from the range: Tough to choose just one, but I love the pink and orange treatment capsules and the pink mask (I use it as a conditioner).

Which product do you think everyone should try: All of them! But the treatment capsules for daily use, and if you have kids, the Milkshake leave-in conditioner is a winner. I have been using it on my girls’ hair since they were a few months old.

Why do you think the Ellips products should be added to everyone’s haircare routine: They really are liquid gold, once you use them you will be hooked. They are affordable and work wonders on your hair – they improve the overall health, reduce frizz and smell amazing. That’s why we call them, ‘Your Hair’s Best Friend’. They are very light treatments, which means they don’t make your hair heavy or oily.

What makes your products so unique: Single-use biodegradable capsules. It’s the perfect amount for the average head of hair so none of the product goes to waste. They are great for travelling – the blister pack is easy to pack – especially if you’re getting a lot of sea and sun!

What are the different products that you stock: 5 variants of hair treatment capsules for all hair types, Cuticle Serum, Ultra Treatment, Milkshake leave-in Conditioner and 3 variants of hair masks.

How can people order from you/purchase these products: The full range is available on our site and Takealot.com. Only the 5 variants of treatment capsules are available at selected Clicks stores.

How do you use the hair vitamins:

  1. Use after shampooing on lightly towel dried hair.
  2. Open the biodegradable capsule and spread the hair treatment on your palms.
  3. Evenly distribute through your hair.
  4. Leave to dry, do not rinse off. Style as normal.

Quote you live by: Everything happens for a reason.

Anything else you want to add: Thanks to everyone for their support of this small business. As a one woman operation (and mom of two little ones), I have learnt so much in the past few years and have met some incredible people along the way. We hope that ellips becomes a part of everyone’s haircare routine. It really is Your Hair’s Best Friend.


Writing this blog was not part of my agreement with TBS Marketing, and it is not something that I was “expected” to do – but I did want to tell all of you about a real product that I really can’t do without. And that product is ellips…

I hope that you will give them a try too. If you have any queries, or want to know which product you should try first, please feel free to pop Roxy a DM through any of their social media channels. She has been so patient with me, and super helpful with which products would work best for my hair concerns.

If you are wanting a quick and easy solution for your hair issues, look no further!


15 Things Not to Say to Someone With Myasthenia Gravis

I wrote this blog a few years back and thought it was still pretty relevant…  Even though I am nowhere near as sick with Myasthenia Gravis as I was when I wrote these, there are still certain triggers for me that cause heartache! I have heard all of these at least once and they have really stung. Some of them I am learning to brush off, but some still make my blood boil. So this is my vent. It is often my responses I wish I had the guts to say to those who have said it to me.

People may think they are being kind or supportive, but know that more often than not we are sensitive and embarrassed by our myasthenia gravis. Words can be very hurtful, and stay within someone’s heart for a lot longer than you may realize.

We are all beautiful individuals — some of us are just more “special” than others!

So here it goes…

1. I know exactly what you’re going through.

No, I can pretty much guarantee that you don’t. You don’t know what it’s like to battle to get your words out, choke on your own spit or have difficulty getting up off the floor. You may have some understanding through us explaining what we are going through, but you do not know what it is like to live with MG. And everyone who has MG is different, and has varying degrees of symptoms — nobody is the same, so we don’t even know what the other snowflakes are feeling!

2. Nobody could ever love you with this disease.

Yes, I have actually had an ex say this to me. It broke me. Still to this day it lies heavy on my heart, and every fight I ever have comes back to these words that were spoken over my life. I often distance myself from others as I would rather not become too close to anyone than lose them (friendship or otherwise) due to the fact that they cannot handle my disease. It is a heavy burden to carry, and try as I might I cannot forget it. Even if you say something like this in the heat of the moment it cannot be taken back. I am so grateful for my wonderful husband, family and friends that have proven that they can love me with my MG and will be my pillars of support through the good and the bad. I am truly blessed.

3. You need to be more positive.

This one irks me like you cannot believe! I am a very positive person. I laugh throughout life and always try to see the best in every situation. Yes I was given the short straw with regard to this illness, but if I hadn’t gone through everything I have, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. But sometimes I do have my down days. Sometimes I will cry for anything. Some days I am sick of being sick. I battle with hearing bad news about my illness or my medicine. But I don’t need to hear that I need to be more positive. I try every day to see the good in every situation I find myself in. I try to greet others with a smile, make them laugh and show compassion towards everyone I meet. I try to live my life with kindness in my heart. I would love the same in return! Help lift me up when I am down. Make me laugh. But please don’t tell me to be more positive!

4. It’s not that bad.

Um…  Sometimes it is! Have you lived with this? Have you wondered when things will get better? Have you thought you were in remission, only to end up back in ICU? Have you sat on your bed unable to stand up or brush your hair or pick up your bag? I agree that some days are absolutely fantastic, but when I say I am having a bad day this is probably because it is quite awful! Many of us snowflakes keep smiling and positive for as long as we possibly can, and we are probably dealing with a lot more than you possibly realize. We live with this every day. We try cope with it to the best of our abilities. We don’t use it to our advantage or enjoy being sick.

5. You need to get over this.

I would love to! I would love to not have to put 22 tablets down my throat daily. I would love to be able to walk up stairs without having to physically lifting my legs by the time I get to the top. I would love to not slur my words by the end of the day and have people say to me, “Shame, are you tired?” We do not put this on! And we would love to be “normal” like everyone around us.

6. You don’t look that sick.

No, probably not. Except for maybe if you see us late at night or if we are really tired, and our eyelids start drooping or we can’t smile properly. But MG is a nasty disease that drains all our energy and makes our muscles forget their job. We may not look sick, but we are fighting a constant battle with our own bodies.

7. Just drink water/eat yogurt if you are battling.

Shame. The people who have said this to me have really just been trying to help. They most probably did have my best interests at heart but just did not understand. When you cannot swallow, it means you can’t swallow anything — sometimes not even your own spit. I can count many a time where I had to use paper towel/toilet paper to soak up my saliva as I kept choking on it and it was dribbling out onto my chin. So drinking water or eating yogurt is not going to help the situation — I would probably need more paper towel to clean up the mess if anything! When I am having a good day this is perfectly fine, but when I am battling this is near impossible…

8. You need to get out more.

Walking makes me tired. Working makes me tired. Talking makes me tired. Flip sometimes even putting on a happy face makes me tired! So when I am feeling weak, the only thing I want to do is climb into my bed and sleep. I wish I could go out more. I wish I could spend more time with my friends and enjoy parties with them. I thrive off other people and their energy. It hurts when people say this to me, as I used to be very outgoing and a real party animal. Now staying up after 10 at home is a big thing! I often have to cancel/postpone plans as I realize my body just can’t cope and I cannot take the risk of having another relapse. On my good days I do as much as I can without overexerting myself (my mother may disagree here…) and I always go to bed much happier. I will come out whenever I can.  But please understand that my health is my number one priority and canceling plans hurts me a lot more than it hurts you. Please don’t exclude me from everything, though — I do feel like I have missed out on a lot with friends due to my MG and this hurts. Perhaps make plans for during the day over a weekend, or on a public holiday.  If I can’t make it at the last minute, be understanding. Don’t fight with me about it!

9. It must be nice to sleep so much and have everyone run around after you.

I have had plenty of people say this to me. Even some of my own family… I think some people take advantage of being sick, that is true. But I hate it. I hate that my husband has to carry in the groceries for me. I hate that I can’t help move the furniture around at work or home. I hate that often over a weekend I have to take an afternoon nap to see me through the day. I feel like I am missing out! I hate having to ask people for help, or even to admit that I cannot do something on my own. It makes me feel inferior and makes me have to acknowledge my illness. I wouldn’t sleep so much if I didn’t have to, and I would do everything for myself if I could.

10. If you exercised more, you’d get fitter and feel better.

Overuse of muscles in a person with MG makes them give up. So in other words, exercise actually makes us weaker! We can do basic exercises, but only when we are feeling strong and can cope with it. Sometimes walking from the house to the car is enough. I have tried to go to a gym class once before and fell on the ground unable to get up. My muscles had had enough and I struggled for ages afterwards with weakness all over my body.

11. Everyone gets tired.

Yes, everyone does get tired. But tired for you is very different to tired for me. We all cope in varying ways. Myasthenics get tired from a normal day at the office! Realize what it is that our illness does to us before you say such things.

12. You’re just having a bad day.

Hmmmmm…  Perhaps we are. But probably not. It is probably a normal day for us, but the first time you have noticed us letting our front down unable to keep up the facade any longer. Perhaps we are finally letting you in to see what we live with. Perhaps we are just having an “all fall down” kind of day. You can’t really tell us what kind of day we are having, though. You don’t know the battles we are fighting or what we are coping with on a daily basis. We say we are OK but that may just be because we are too tired to explain how we are really feeling.

13.  It’s all in your head.

Really? You think I would make something like this up? You think I enjoy this? Do you honestly think we would want this? I would not wish this illness onto my worst enemy. But it is very real. It controls my life. It shows me what I can and cannot do. It has built me into the person I am today, but it is most definitely not all in my head! It is not psychosomatic.

14.  There are people worse off than you.

Absolutely. I agree. And I pray for those people, as well as working with them on a daily basis through my work with Rare Diseases SA. But when people say this to me, it is said in a condescending way that makes me feel stupid or like I am putting this whole thing on. I am grateful for all I do have in my life and I do not need more negativity coming my way!

15.  Maybe if you lost some weight you would feel better.

Grrrrr! This one grates my carrot. Yes, I probably am looking bigger than I did last time you saw me. It is most probably as a result of all the medication I am on. These cause water retention, which in turn causes “moon face.” It is not attractive. I hate having pictures taken of myself and seeing how big I look. I am trying so hard to lose weight, but it is not easy. I cannot exercise, and I try to eat what I can — depending on how my swallowing is at that particular moment. But telling anyone, especially a girl, that they need to lose weight is like poking a sleeping bear. Not clever. I would love to lose weight — and I am trying. 


This post is for every brave rare warrior fighting their own battle that others do not understand. I just want to create awareness for what people say. Watch your words. They can hurt. They can be taken the wrong way, especially when the other person is having a sensitive day. Every day we are fighting a battle. We try so hard to be strong and make it through the day.

Support us.

Love us.

Make us laugh.

Keep us positive.

Give us a hug.

But most of all, try to put yourselves in our shoes.


The Best Fudge Ever!

A bad day with fudge is better than a good day without it.

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I have such a sweet tooth! And even though I am trying my best to follow a healthier eating plan, there is nothing I appreciate more than a small treat with my evening cup of tea. And I couldn’t think of anything more perfect than a piece of fudge from Quinnies.

Quinnies fudge reminds me of the fudge that my granny used to have in her cookie jar in her kitchen. It is smooth, not too sweet and you can taste that it has been made with love. I mean, could you ask for much more?

My husband doesn’t usually enjoy sweet things, so when Quinnies sent me a large jar of their vanilla fudge, I was looking forward to enjoying the whole jar on my own. Pffft – one nibble at a corner of one of my chunk of fudge and suddenly Warren decided that he needed his own piece as well. So I would recommend hiding these away from your significant other, and children, or just buying enough jars for everyone and ensuring that yours is hidden in a secret spot where others can’t sneak their dirty mitts and share yours without your knowledge.

Charlene (the owner of Quinnies) also sent me fudge in the shape of a dog and cat as she knows how important my animals are to me and I just LOVE the fact that her clients are more than simply numbers, and you become part of the family from the moment you contact her.


Your name: Charlene McQuinn

Business name: Quinnies

Social media handles: Facebook, Instagram and Website.

3 fun facts about you: I’ve run 5 world marathons, I embarrass myself REGULARLY, I make really good fudge.

Can you tell me more about your business:
It wasn’t planned. Quinnies happened by pure accident. I was taking time off work and planning to return to corporate when a batch of fudge was made for the kids. A few pieces were given to some Moms at the school and a jar was put together as a gift. That jar was “stolen” by my husband and taken to work. He returned with a few orders which I started making that weekend. When those orders went out more orders came back and before we knew it we had moms and colleagues as regular customers. We then realised we had to cost the jars and when the orders continued to flow we realised we had to come up with a name for the fudge. It all happened so quickly. Word spread and before we knew it we started stocking corporate coffee shops, hotels and airport lounges. Quinnies had to grow as well and we got to welcome some amazing ladies to the team. Our household kitchen could no longer cater for the demand and we built a little dedicated Quinnies kitchen.
Covid hit and boy did things change. Our biggest channels were impacted the most so we had to get innovative. We reached out to lots of deli’s and upgraded our online platforms. We haven’t fully recovered as yet but we’re heading there. People have been amazing and the support has been incredible. Our channels have changed quite a bit and South Africans are wanting to support local, quality products, which is really great.

Why is fudge so special to you:
Its provided a platform to create employment. When we went into this there was a 29% unemployment rate and I did a happy dance every time we got to employ a permanent staff member. The realisation that Quinnies could help provide employment became one of the major objectives. Now the situation is dire as we head to a 50% unemployment rate. We need to support local businesses now more than ever to try and fix this.

What makes your fudge so unique:
We don’t compromise on our ingredients and use real butter and full cream milk. It’s all homemade – our batches are small, they take time and lots and lots of stirring.

Which is your favourite flavour:
I always resort back to the Traditional Vanilla Flavour – probably because it makes me nostalgic. It tastes like our Mom’s and Grannies used to make it.
If I had to go for one of the different flavours it would definitely be Chilli Fudge. It such a great combination of flavours and after your first bite it starts to warm the back of your throat.

How can people order from you:
The best way is online through our website.

Can people order fudge from you in bulk for gifts/celebrations:
Absolutely! Because everything is made by hand, the bigger the order, the more people are needed to make the order – but we definitely cut back as much as possible to make those special moments more special.

Quote you live by:
The more you love your own decisions, the less you need others to love them.

Anything else you want to add:
My Family have been amazing in all of this. They are so supportive. My husband helps out so much with all the areas that I don’t enjoy…like the finance! The kids have helped me pack thousands of little squares in rushed fashion before the courier was about to arrive for a collection. It can be quite lonely running a small business and it helps to have a team of supporters. I’m so grateful to them.


I love that this is a small business, run by family and each piece is packaged with love. I love the passion behind this business, and the fact that Charlene is actively making a difference in her community – and beyond.

Charlene, thank you for spreading love and joy through Quinnies, and for introducing me to my new favourite treat! I feel like this is a must-have for every household and you will be seeing my name on many future orders too.

Guys, please remember to support these small businesses. They are people that are making an active difference in their lives, and in the lives of each employee. Why not place an order for your next event, or as teacher’s gifts, or even as a “just because”? And you can thank me later once you have tasted this and realise you just can’t live without the fudge.


Fundraising Like Your Life Depends On It…

We never plan to get sick… especially not with a rare condition or in need of a life-saving procedure that isn’t covered by medical aid, let alone our own pockets. And fundraising to keep living is definitely never thought of!

Fundraising has become an important part of living with a rare condition. It has allowed many of us to keep living; to see that doctor; to have that operation; or even join a trial. For me, it was having the first ever stem cell transplant for Myasthenia Gravis in South Africa.

Getting to the point of having to ask friends, family and even strangers to help fund your medical treatment is never easy, and we explored every available option before we had to do this. We consulted with many doctors around South Africa, and they were in contact with doctors overseas who had successfully done this trial treatment. We sent this information on to my medical aid, and when this was denied, we appealed it after doing further research and requesting my treating doctor to motivate for it. When this was denied yet again, we approached the treatment centres overseas to see if they would accept me there – which they would, but at an expense that included travel and accommodation.

There was constant communication, constant reaching out to the medical aid, and constant phone calls to see what other information we could possibly submit to make the transplant a reality. There wasn’t one single day where we just sat back, and I think this was really the start of my realising the importance of getting all the facts, never giving up, and constantly calling whoever possible to make this life-saving treatment a reality.

There were loads of tears and absolute despair, but there was also a fire deep inside of me that wouldn’t allow myself to give up.

megan hunter

So when the medical aid decided once and for all that they wouldn’t cover this, we had to look at what our other options were. We approached the doctor who was willing to complete the transplant, and asked for an estimate of what this transplant would cost – from the hospital stays, to the medication, to the blood tests, and the transplant itself. Medical aid wouldn’t pay for anything, so we had to ensure that we knew beforehand a good rough quote of what we needed to raise.

Once we had received this quote, we set up a fundraising campaign through BackABuddy I wrote out my story, found some pictures, and received references from my doctor and Rare Diseases South Africa that I sent to them so they could authorise my application. You can choose to have the funds paid directly to the bank account of the doctor/hospital so all donors can be sure of where the funds are going as well. [There is a 5% administrative fee that Backabuddy takes on all donations, so keep this in mind when selecting the amount that you need to raise.]

I was assigned a specific contact person at Backabuddy who helped me with ideas on how I could improve my reach, better my profile, and hopefully reach my target. They were very helpful, kind and patient with me; and their advice made all the difference.

cheerful young woman screaming into megaphone
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Next comes more work… but it is the only way you can make your fundraiser work. You need to share, share, and SHARE the link for your fundraiser. Share it on your social media pages, ask your family to share it to theirs, and get your friends to share it with their networks too. Reach out to media houses, radio stations, and celebrities. Make sure that as many people as possible are seeing your link – even if they can’t personally donate, they can share the link and potentially reach someone who can.

Make sure your fundraising platform has constant updates on where you are in the race to fundraise, what reaching the next milestone means; and post updated information/photos/videos. If possible, I would also recommend creating a social media page to keep people updated with all this information as this also makes it easy for others to share your updates and reach others. You never know how your post could encourage others to keep fighting, or even just touch a person so that they want to help you win your battle. If possible, share them to your local Facebook groups/pages as well.

Hosting events (physical or virtual) is also a great way to get people involved. Phone around for donations and form a raffle of sorts. Get branded clothing made up that people can order with some of the funds going into your kitty. Ask to host speaking events at businesses/corporates to tell your story. Get local businesses involved, and be sure to publicly name each of them and show your thanks for their generosity.

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Messages of thanks are vital. There is an option to set these up as automatic responses on the Backabuddy site, but I would recommend personally contacting everyone who gives to your fundraiser as a sign of good favour and thanks. Whether it be R50 or R50,000 – they all deserve to be acknowledged and appreciated. And those small amounts do add up, so don’t ever discount them!

Once you have reached your target, send out another thanks to everyone and remind them of what this means to you. It means a chance at health, and a second chance at life. Share your dreams, aspirations and excitement. Again, if you have a specific social media page for your health journey, share it all here as well so people can celebrate with you.

Fundraising is hard work, but it is so worth it. I can say with 100% conviction that I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for the generosity of friends, family and strangers towards my transplant. Don’t give up. Keep trying. And always keep fighting for a better tomorrow.

{Original article written for Rare Diseases SA here}


Grow with the Flow

One thing that being in lockdown and spending extra time at home has changed for me is the amount of houseplants I have accumulated. From small to large, from upright to cascading, from green to pink – I have discovered my love of greenery and nature surrounding me, and I love taking the time to chat to my new little friends and learn how to take the best possible care of them.

I have been buying all my plants from small businesses or a guy that comes around to our office block (when we were actually working there), and during my explorations I discovered the divine husband and wife team aka Grow with the Flow.


Let’s Chat to Grow with the Flow

Your Names: We are Kyle & Rejandi Houston-McMillan

Business Name: We named our business Grow with the Flow.

Social Media Handles: Instagram, Facebook and Website.

3 fun facts about US: Kyle thinks these are FUN facts, I just think that they’re facts. 😂 But you can be the judge of that.

  • We both completed our honours degrees in two very different fields of study. Kyle studied Landscape Architecture and I studied Psychology. Both our undergraduate studies were completed at the University of Pretoria.
  • We tied the knot in January of 2020, but we met in 2013 when I was only 16 and Kyle 17. We’ve been together ever since.
  • We come from very different backgrounds. Kyle is English and was raised in Pretoria (With a surname like that, people usually assume as much). Whereas I am Afrikaans (my surname used to be Coetzee) and grew up in a small town called Mooinooi in the North West Province. We met by chance one night in Pretoria at a mutual friend’s birthday party.

What exactly does your business do: Kyle: “When it comes to plants, what does our business not do?” We started our business with subscription boxes but soon realized that we would do better just by selling plants online. Back when we started, there weren’t that many online indoor plant shops. But lately, they’re popping up everywhere. I guess it’s because of the current situation- people are finding ways to keep their businesses afloat and going online is all that makes sense. But back to the question- We sell indoor plants online. So people place orders through our website, or directly through us, and then we send them beautiful indoor plants! Simple as that. Obviously there is a lot of behind the scenes that people don’t know about. Packaging is a big thing for us, since the plants travel all over SA, we need to make sure that they will survive the trip and get there in one piece. So we have to prep each plant before it gets packed into its box. This involves cleaning pots, taping soil down with brown paper, putting plants in plastic sleeves to protect the leaves, sometimes wrapping whole plants in brown paper, shining leaves, deciding which size box to use, stuffing open spaces with newspapers (or sometimes free plants), then extending boxes to make sure leaves don’t bend (we call them box caps- we basically add half a box on top of the current box), putting stickers on the boxes for the couriers etc. The above process doesn’t even mention the admin that gets put in… doing stock take, box analysis (so we know what to buy), typing up waybills, handwriting the thank you notes, making plant info sheets, working on the website and a whole lot more. This business has grown in so many directions, that it’s hard to explain what exactly we do. The short answer (that we usually give strangers) is that we sell indoor plants online and ship them all over South Africa. But there is just so much more that we can say- as you can see. 😂

What makes you stand out to other nurseries/plant shops:
Isn’t this a question that all business owners ask themselves on a daily basis? What we hope to achieve, and what we hope stands out – is that we try to create a unique, and personal plant shopping experience. People are usually skeptical when it comes to shipping live plants – but we have now done it thousands of times with great success. Our business is personal. It’s one on one. We communicate through whatsapp and give customers updates on their orders – I (Rejandi) personally write the thank you notes, and I have done this since the very beginning. We also send tracking info for your purchase once it has been shipped, and we also include some general after travel tips for the plants. Kyle spends hours on Photoshop creating personal and specific plant care info sheets for each plant that we sell – which gives a lot more info than the sticker on a pot that you would find in a normal nursery. We also offer after-purchase care and advice if plants aren’t doing so well. We have WhatsApp web open in our office 24/7 and we check messages and answer them as often as we can. When people buy from us continuously – we become friends. I remember names since I write the notes myself- so next time you order, I might just add a complimentary plant, mug, cookie, or gift – and that, the personal touch we put into everything, is what makes us different!

Why the obsession with plants:
It all started with a single purchase from Woolworths. Kyle was adamant that we could take care of a Monstera in our shoe-box size flat when we were still studying. I was skeptical since I thought they needed bright light and you know; belonged outside. 😂 Kyle has always had green thumbs. It kind of comes with his area of study. Plants have always been his thing. He had to learn their scientific names and all types of info on them for his degree. So he has a lot of knowledge on them that really comes in handy now. So after that Monstera was surviving, we started buying more and more. We eventually moved to a much nicer apartment when we were both doing our honours degrees and the plant collection just grew. Birds nest ferns, bamboo palms etc. But even then I had no idea how many indoor plants existed. I only really learned when we started the business.

Why do you think everyone should own a plant:
Now this is where my degree and knowledge become relevant. From a psychological point of view- and as many studies have shown, plants increase productivity. Having plants in your space, and caring for them- has a serious influence on your mental health. I’ve heard people say that plants are the new pets – and pets are the new children, because actual children are too expensive. Caring for something is built into us. It’s part of our DNA. So if we can’t afford children, or pets – at least we can take care of plants and achieve some level of satisfaction and purpose – a sense of being needed and valued (even if plants can’t talk- seeing a plant make a new leaf, is so rewarding!) So not only can plants increase your productivity in the office, and at home- but they can also make you a proud plant parent!

Which is your personal favourite indoor plant:
Do we have to choose only 1? 😂 Kyle will always stick with the original- a monstera. “It’s beautiful, it’s green, it’s rewarding, it’s simple”. Which is all true. It’s an easy-care plant with low light requirements and they are seriously hard to kill. But for me, I’m a bit silly. My favorite is any calathea or prayer plant. You know, the difficult drama queens that just die when you water them one day late or move them 2cm. I can’t seem to learn my lesson with them. I’m always adding more of them to our collection!

Which has been your most popular:
By far the Monster Fig combo! Which is a Monstera and a fiddle leaf fig. The sales of this combo alone have gotten our business through many months! We first started selling the combo in December of last year- we only loaded 50 onto our website and had to restock about 6 times before we decided to just leave it on, and not stock control it. We were still selling that combo all the way till last week when we finally had to take it off the website. So if anyone reading this, bought that combo- thank you for helping us to keep our business going!

Which is your hardiest plant – I’m speaking on behalf of those of us who don’t have a green thumb:
We would definitely recommend our beginners combo! ZZ plant and heartleaf philodendron. The ZZ plant is super hardy. Kyle always says that you could put it in a cupboard, behind a couch and it will still survive. It makes a potato-like ball called a risome in which it stores water. So it does not need water often. The worst you could do to any indoor plant is over water it. So rather under-water. When we got our first ZZ – I read somewhere “if you are wondering whether to water it or not- rather don’t”. That should definitely be a beginner’s top pick- followed by the heartleaf philodendron aka philodendron scandens. This plant is super forgiving and can also go long without water. It is low-light tolerant and is a vining plant, so it makes a lovely bookshelf feature or hanging addition!

What are some of your most unusual plants:
If you’re asking with regards to the plants we sell- then I’ll have to say the polkadot begonia is quite unusual. Upon first sight- it looks unreal, silver polkadoted and almost organge leaves. This plant is also one of our best sellers and a collectors plant! It’s actually really easy to care for- not fussy at all and interesting to watch it grow. Next on the unusual list- is anything varigated. It blows my mind that nature can be such an artist. Varigated plants receive quite a lot of hype- and for good reason! They are a great converstation starter, since anyone who doesn’t know plants will ask “Whats wrong with this plant” because people aren’t used to plants having white in their leaves. If only they knew how plant people fuss about those types of plants- us included.

We also have a few rare and unusual plants in our own collection- including a young varigated monstera, string of hearts, a few calatheas that are not easy to find (or keep alive for that matter), monstera adansonii and a tetrasperma.

Please tell me more about your subscription service, and the different options:
We recently changed our subsription offers. We now have Small (R300), Medium (R350) and Large (R400) subscription boxes to choose from. The boxes all include a plant (the size of the plant depends on the box that is chosen), a handmade ceramic pot or mantis decorative pot cover and a gift. This month we have partnered with Tru Grower so the gift is some lovely foliar feed plant fertilizer and some Grow With the Flow potting soil. The boxes can be purchased through our website or you can send us a whatsapp and we’ll work out shipping etc. Boxes can also be purchased once-off or monthly for how many months you want. We keep things interesting and include new plants and gifts every month. We are also expanding our business and website currently so we are continuously partnering with new brands that feature in the boxes!

How can people order from you:
Most of our orders get processed through our website. We accept online payments and use PayFast wich is a secure payment method. However, some customers prefer to place their orders through Whatsapp, we then set up an invoice and payment is made through EFT (Some customers just feel more comfortable with this). Shipping for the plants gets worked out automatically on the website and is based on how much you spend- since the size of the order determines the box size and shipping costs.

Whereabouts in Johannesburg do you deliver to:
We deliver to everywhere in South Africa. We have yet to receive an order from somewhere that we could not ship to. We use The Courier Guy for shipping and they have been reliable and affordable for our boxes to get to their destinations. There are some special customers that get personal deliveries from us. Simply because they happen to live in an area close to where we are headed. Kyle’s parents live in Pretoria East- so many customers from there have received personal deliveries. We also deliver big local corporate orders ourselves- if it is within a certain area, and the order is too big to ship- we will deliver it ourselves.

Quote you live by:
So many come to mind! I am basically a walking Pinterest board. “Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today”. Kyle says: “Happy wife- happy life”. My personal favourite, which I also want tattooed on me one day (soon) is “Grow through what you go through”. I just feel like this quote resonates with so much happening in our lives but business wise – Our business started and grew because of COVID. We were going through so much all at once (personally), and we couldn’t always keep our heads up. But somehow we managed to start a business during all of that and we have just been growing with our business. Despite what we went through. This quote also has many personal connections but most importantly it remind me that there is a lesson in everything. There is always room to grow and improve. Things can’t always be bad, at some point, they will be good again and in those good moments, I want to look back and think of how those hard times helped to shape me into what I am. I also think the name of our business says a lot “Grow with the Flow” was named this way because we had to change what we were doing in life due to what was happening around us. We literally had to grow through, and with the flow of life.

Anything else you want to add:
I just want to add some detail regarding the origin of the business. Kyle registered this business with money that he got for his 25th birthday. It all started in our house. We started the business before we even had suppliers or any clue of where to start looking. We were selling some of our own personal plants just to see how it would all work out. We started getting subscribers- some family members, some friends, old acquaintances etc. Then some new people subscribed and I remember we had 8 subscribers and I thought WOW! We worked well into the night, just the two of us. Potting plants, cleaning pots, wrapping soil, wiping leaves with a cloth, wrapping all the plants in paper (We only started using the easy plastic sleeves this year), wrapping pots in cardboard, making boxes and packing them. Making info sheets, writing thank you notes, writing waybills, spending an hour at the courier guy making sure each and every box got at least 8 stickers on it to ensure safe shipping etc. The whole process. We would do it ourselves. Only the two of us. 8 boxes to pack and it took us a good few hours. We had plants all over our house. Kitchen counter, stove top, lounge, TV unit, floor even. There was no line between work space and living space. Boxes everywhere. On delivery days, we would fill Kyle’s car. He used to drive a Suzuki, and we were so proud. So proud that we had enough orders to fill the car. We could have never imagined how much the business would explode in a few months time.

By January we could not do everything in the Suzuki and borrowed cars and trailers anymore. So we had to get a bakkie. We also could not manage everything on our own anymore. We had to hire extra hands to help with the plant prep and packing. We asked family members to help out with admin part time and even asked my mother to dust off her old typewriter to type the waybills for us. We just did not have the time anymore. There is still a lot of things that we do ourselves and will keep doing ourselves but we could not keep doing things in our house. There was no space to live anymore. We built a small greenhouse and functional workshop to work in. The business just kept growing and as it is now, we are already looking into expanding the greenhouse again!

We are extremely grateful for all the support we have gotten in such a short amount of time. We cannot believe that this business has grown so much from just an idea and a few plants to pack into 8 boxes to hundreds of plants going out weekly! This business has taught us so much, and we are just so grateful to all of our customers for giving us the opportunity to help them grow their indoor gardens!


This was such an honour to get to know both Kyle and Rejandi. They are a stunning couple, with the kindest hearts, and they are here to spread their love of plants wherever possible.

I think I am going to sign up for their plant subscription box – it’s like getting a surprise gift every month that you just know you are going to love! Could you ask for anything better?


Youth Lab. SA

Last week I was thrilled to be invited to toast&co in Craighall Park as they launched their new facial care range that they have welcomed into the salon. As Boity began speaking about Youth Lab I was immediately drawn into her excitement for this brand! This is an affordable skincare range that aims to boost the metabolic function within the skin – and the products smell absolutely divine. I immediately purchased the Candy Scrub & Mask, and have my eye on a cleanser and moisturiser next. I reached out to the big bosses Victoria and Tanya immediately after this event as I knew that I had to feature them on my blog.

Besides the gorgeous bright colours of their branding, their products also really do work. They all smell divine – and yes, the Candy Scrub & Mask really does smell like candy! Their pricing is competitive with other brands, but the science and research behind this brand is way ahead of others on the market. I can’t wait for you to hear more about Youth Lab from the wonderful women that I got to chat to, and hopefully experience the products for yourself.


YOUTH LAB. is an awarded brand with advanced, yet affordable skin-care products aiming to boost metabolic functions within the skin and gradually “build” a youthful, radiant and clear complexion.

BTS with Youth Lab.

Your names: Victoria and Tanya

Business name: Evolution Cosmetic

Social media handles: Youth Lab SA Facebook, Instagram, Website. Dermaquest SAFacebook, Instagram, Website. Dr Shrammek SAFacebook, Instagram, Website. Gold Collagen SAFacebook, Instagram, Website.

3 fun facts about you:

  1. We have been working together for 13 years.
  2. Evolution Cosmetic houses top, international skin care brands and the award winning collagen + multi-vitamin supplement, Gold Collagen.
  3. We launched Youth Lab after realising that we needed to ensure good, quality, medical-grade skin care was accessible to everyone. Covid has brought with it many challenges and harder times financially for most, we know our consumer still wants to care for their skin but might not be able to afford the higher end skin care they once could.

What is Youth Lab:
During the aging process, our skin’s metabolic rate decreases and with each passing year more biological functions move into the slow lane. Through age and exposure to constant environmental hazards, our systems start to perform below average, resulting in slower cell communication and unwanted skin conditions, such as acne, pigmentation as well as all stages of the aging process.

From cleansers and results-driven moisturisers to innovative treatment masks and serums, each product within YOUTH LAB. targets a different skin metabolic function and is enriched with active ingredients, especially designed to balance the specific condition being treated. Mainly though, it is a anti-aging skin care range for every beautiful stage you’re at!

What makes Youth Lab stand out in comparison to other skincare products:
The unique skin metabolism philosophy as well as the years of clinical research that went into the brand. The trials started in 2006 and it only launched globally in 2013… skincare quite literally backed by science

• Cruelty free
• Vegan friendly
• Sustainably sourced ingredients
• Gluten free
• Mineral oil free
• Paraben free

What is your personal favourite product:
Tanya = Restoring Serum: Being in my late 30’s its certainly time to up my anti-aging game! I like this because of the fluid consistency, because I am quote prone to breakouts I need something to target my aging concerns without being too rich. I am able to use this serum at night with no additional moisturiser. It also restores radiance and brightness, leaving my skin more elastic, smoother and firmer.

Victoria = Peptide Spring Hydra-Gel Eye Patches: Peptides to the power of 4!!! Remember, this is a medical-grade skin care brand – so these patches are not just a cute selfie enhancer. I leave them on twice a week up to 15min as a very intensive treatment around my eye area, they have truly assisted my puffiness, dark circles and crow’s feet – the eyes need more attention in your late 40’s.

What is the one product that you think everyone should try:
Cleansing Radiance Mask and Candy Scrub! Equally they both contain unique blends of AHA, BHA and botanical extracts – by using these two you’ll realise the strength of the treatments! Use them twice a week to really boost your daily skincare routine.

Which are the basic products that you would recommend people start out with:
Cleanser, moisturiser and sunscreen!!!

If we don’t know which products to try can we contact you for assistance:
Of course! We will also direct you to your nearest stockist for a full skin analysis
We also have a full website where you can learn more – www.youthlabsa.co.za

What are some of your active ingredients:
Peptides
Alpha Hydroxy Acids
Beta Hydroxy Acids

Which skin types and concerns are best suited to using Youth Lab:
Oily skin and acne
Aging at every stage
Dryness, dehydration

Where can people purchase your products from:
We are stocked at medi-spa’s and aesthetic practices nationwide

How do you get all your products to smell so flipping yummy:
Essential oil essence

Quote you live by:

“You glow through what you go through!”

Anything else you want to add:
Evolution Cosmetic is a dynamic skincare marketing and distribution company operating from our head office in Johannesburg. We handle not only the import and distribution of our brands, but all training, PR and marketing.
We are using the knowledge and passion for the medical aesthetic industry gained, to successfully launch a number of top international skincare brands in South Africa. We are a small yet dynamic team with a strong commitment to customer service and relations who pride ourselves on efficiency and attention to detail. Learn more at www.evolutioncosmetic.co.za


Guys, this skincare range has honestly impressed me so much. From blemish patches, to anti-aging products, to SPF with a tint (so it can be used as a “healthier” BB cream on a daily basis); these products are ahead of the game and are here to change our skincare routines to something enjoyable without the extreme costs we often find associated with salon-sourced skincare ranges.

PLUS, you can even go to salons such as toast&co to experience a facial using these products to see for yourself how wonderful they are, and how much your skin will appreciate the extra love and attention. If you have any concerns or queries, please reach out to the Youth Lab team directly, and they can assist with your queries or confusion around any of the products that you are wanting to try.

Enjoy!


The Piercery

I have always thought that piercings are so beautiful! I am addicted to watching piercing TikToks, and watching how curations of piercings are made to suit your ear, personality and jewellery choices. I didn’t know of anyone locally who was able to offer this experience, until I saw Roxy Burger posting about new exciting venture – The Piercery.

You may recognise Roxy from her early days on KTV, and then when she hosted “What Not To Wear SA”. She has also worked with Strictly Come Dancing, Top Billing and MTV. She is a mom, a friend, a businesswoman and a true inspiration to so many.

Roxy has her own gorgeous jewellery range, Linear Luxe, and the fact that you can purchase these directly from her shop in Emmarentia makes this a truly unique experience, and one that has been thought out in it’s entirety.

I can’t wait for you to see all that she has on offer, and even book in for the pain-free piercings which are happening this weekend. Read on for my interview with Roxy herself, and see why a professional piercer is so important!


Your name: Roxy Burger

Business names: The Piercery and Linear Luxe

Social media handles: Roxy BurgerFacebook, Instagram and Website. The PierceryFacebook, Instagram and Website. Linear LuxeFacebook, Instagram and Website.

3 fun facts about you: I have been in TV since I was 10, I can touch my nose with my tongue and my husband is my high school sweetheart 😉

Can you tell me a little more about each of these businesses: I started these businesses because I wanted to create a non-intimidating space to get pierced! Plus I couldn’t find the jewellery I wanted. I approached Craig from Black Key Diamonds in Cape Town and the rest is history!

What does Linear Luxe mean to you: I always like to say it’s afforable luxury – timeless pieces that will last a lifetime!

Some tips for styling a stacked earlobe:
🌟 Keep the shape of YOUR earlobe in mind ~ we all have different ears. And work with a curator like @zuko_piercer to find YOUR perfect fit.
🌟 Balance is good: try and balance your pieces across your lobe and don’t over pierce one side over another.
🌟 Look for a cohesive concept: do you like round shapes? Squares? Or a constellation theme like moons and stars? Or is juxtaposition the thing that brings it all together?
🌟 A triangle shape is a go to: sets of 3 work well. A triangle is aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

Who are these gorgeous pieces designed for: Anyone who wants something a little different with a lot of sparkle.

Where did the idea for this business come from: I couldn’t find what I personally wanted as a consumer so I made it!

What makes them so special to you: Because I am a part of the design and manufacturing process it really does hold a special place in my heart.

Where can people purchase these from: Online at www.roxyburger.co.za or from The Piercery, in store.

Now I know you recently opened The Piercery, how is that going: Brilliantly! People are loving the space which I am so grateful for.

What makes it different to other piercing shops: It’s not just about the piercing – it’s the curation of your ear and the experience that goes with it. It’s where piercings meet fashion, trend and style.

Why is it so important to go to a professional piercer: Because of the professional after-sales service as well as not damaging your ear. NEVER use a gun to pierce!

How did you decide to open this shop: I needed a piercing partner and my friend Mel, who herself pierces, was the perfect fit!

I see you do piercing curation – please explain more: So it’s all about design and balance – not just putting holes in your body. Do you want to theme your ear? How do the pieces compliment one another? How do you combine size and texture etc.?

Not too sure what to do? Don’t know how to curate your piercings? We’ll help 😎 With our trusty silicone ears and expert piercer @zuko_piercer 🤗

Where is your shop located: We are at Fallen Heroes: 249 Barry Hertzog Avenue, Emmarentia

Do people need to book to come through: They can for busy Saturdays like we have our Aesthetic doc, Dr. Candice come and numb ears, but walk-in’s are always welcome too!

Quote you live by: Be consistent, in whatever you do.


This is THE place to get all your piercings done, as well as the most gorgeous dainty jewellery to enhance the curated piercings that you have had done. Roxy has poured her love and passion into this, and you can immediately tell as you scroll through the social media accounts, or chat to Zuko (her piercer).

I have been dying to go get my piercings curated, and see what they can put together for me. Plus, I’m obsessed with their wide range of jewellery that is available, and just how dainty they look.

Which is going to be your next piercing?

And will I see you there this Saturday?


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