Lily Storm

A personal take on beauty, life and dreams.

February 2013 archive

Mangwanani African Spa – pure indulgence

One of the items on my Christmas 2012 wish list, was to experience the mystical Mangwanani African Spa. I was lucky enough to spend some quality time at this amazing sanctuary this past weekend.

 On the way…

Along a winding dirt road, tucked away in the vineyards – lies the Zevenwacht branch. Although only ten minutes away from my home, I had absolutely no idea the magic that this spa would bestow upon me. I arrived at 08h30, and received a very warm welcome by regional manager Coleen Deedat and the singing Mangwanani ladies. A healthy breakfast awaited me (muesli, mini scones, muffins and fruit juice). And on my chair…a plush gown and slippers. I was ready for my Half Day Spa experience!

 The Mangwanani Welcome!

They cater for about 60 guests at a time, so everything is very well run and organized. You are gently ushered from one treatment to the next by professional and friendly staff.

First up, was the African Head, Neck and Shoulders massage (Molala) by therapist Zim. A few ladies (myself included) were led to a light and airy room with huge open windows with the most spectacular view. This was a ‘communal’ session – which I quite liked. We sat side by side in comfortable chairs with our feet propped up on cushions. I have to say that this was my favourite treatment. Having someone massage my scalp, with a cool fresh breeze playing on my face, and the sound of birds in the distance – was heavenly! You get three different oils to choose from: Nurture, Calm and Revitalize. I chose Nurture because it contained rose oil….LOVE!

On to the Traditional Full Body Massage with Hot Stones (Izimanga). I was lucky to get Zim again – she was excellent! This was done privately, in a dimly lit, very relaxing room. Normally, I’m not a fan of full body massage – because it is either too hard, or my face goes numb in the uncomfortable hole in the bed. But this…oh my. Everything was perfect. I was in a state of partial sleep and complete bliss. It was the quickest hour of my life, because I didn’t want it to end!

In between treatments, you can wonder into the dining area to sip on ice cold cherry or cucumber juice. Or simply just soak in the beautiful views you’re surrounded with. Everyone kind of walks around in a dazed, relaxed state with messy hair - wearing gowns and slippers. It’s fabulous.

I rounded off the morning, with a Traditional African Royal Foot Massage (Neo Maoto). This time, administered by the lovely Gladys. Again, a communal activity. You’re seated in an incredibly comfy reclining chair, in front of wide open wooden patio doors. When I bothered to open my eyes now and then, I watched a dragonfly buzzing lazily around the courtyard, and even saw an eagle floating by. Yes, really.

Foot Massage Room

What I loved most about Mangwanani is the welcoming atmosphere. The treatments are decadent and rich. There is even a selection of cakes to indulge in! My kind of spa. The design of the place is also most appealing, as it centres around a sparkling blue pool with wooden decking. It reminds me of a Tuscan style villa, but with all the rich decor and warmth of Africa. Mangwanani empowers women from disadvantaged communities, and all their employed therapists receive in house training. To me, businesses that are centred around this concept seem to exude genuine integrity, which comes across to their customers.

Poolside glamour

Every woman (and man), should experience Mangwanani at least once. But I promise, you will want to go back for more. I imagine the Moonlight package to be very romantic for couples. But also perfect for you and a girl friend, or even on your own…for some reflection. Not only does it revitalize the body, but it restores the soul too. I left there on Saturday morning with a content smile, my skin glowing and soaked in aromatic oils. I used to think that their prices were somewhat expensive, but now I can honestly say you cannot get better value for money. I’d even go so far as to make room in my budget for a monthly visit! Simply because they take pampering to another level.

Me, Gladys, Zim & Coleen…thank you ladies!

Although the Zevenwacht branch is well worth the drive (Kuils River is lovely…okay, I’m biased!) – you may want to visit their Boutique Spa set in the Waterfront area if you’re closer to Cape Town CBD. A slightly different feel, but just as decandant. Here, you can enjoy a mani and pedi – as well as the other range of massage treatments. They also stock the full range of Mangwanani products available for purchasing, which all smell delicious.

Mangwanani Boutique Spa – Waterfont


Today, I tried the Moroccan Floor Massage. The therapist works on your pressure points while you’re lying on a floor bed (fully clothed). Lots of kneading, stretching and pulling, but I loved it. Before getting started, you’re asked to inhale some lavender oil from the therapist’s cupped hands – which helps with relaxation. This treatment aims to relieve tension and strengthen the body’s resistance to disease. So I’d say if you have a demanding job and you’re feeling worn out, this is definately worth a try.

Another lovely feature of the Mangwanani Boutique Spa, is the High Tea package. You can round up some of your girl friends, and enjoy an after-work treatment package with tea, scones and pastries.

They currently have a fantastic special up until the 28th of February, with their ‘Treat a Friend’ offer. See below for more details. Book early, as they’re quite busy.

Spoil yourself – you deserve it!




Skin Clays by Kai

I’ve been on a mission to find a really good clay face mask. You know the kind that dries to a crusty layer on your skin making it almost impossible to smile? So whilst googling, I discovered an amazing locally produced range called Skin Clays by Kai.

My beauty besty Zuleigha (aka The Pink Mermaid) and I met up with the lovely Karen Vosloo – proud owner of this home-based business in Durbanville. Chatting to Karen, I immediately sensed her passion and love for her products. After three years of hard work and research, she has managed to unite the amazing qualities of clay and essential oils.

The various clays are imported from Australia and France, and contain a high mineral content. Most importantly, it detoxifies, exfoliates and smoothes in one action.

Karen has formulated quite an array of products: face masks, body cream, hand cream, linen sprays, body scrubs and room mists. I have tried many lotions and potions over the years, but I was truly blown away by Skin Clays. We were lucky to receive some samples – and Zuleigha and I wasted no time experimenting.

My absolute favourites are the French Pink Clay mask (R35 - yields about four applications) and shower gel (R30 for 200ml). After mixing up the powdered mask with a few drops of water, and applying to my face for about 15 minutes…I could seriously see a difference to the texture and glow of my skin after rinsing it off. And this after only one application. The stuff is amazing.

The shower gel (which also contains the pink clay) foams very well when used with a body sponge, and the celestial fragrance lingers for a long time. I sometimes battle to find a soap or shower product which will not irritate my skin, and so far, I haven’t had a problem with this one.

Also really enjoyed the Juniper, Jasmine and Bergamot Room Mist. I swear it’s better than any regular air freshener.

We LOVE Skin Clays by Kai - and have given them the Lily Storm stamp of approval!

For more information on the Skin Clays range, or to place an order, please contact Karen on 083 264 9498 or You may also click here to hook up with them on Facebook.

VALENTINES DAY SPECIAL: For every purchase of R150 or more, you will receive a sample pack of their latest products – which includes a 50ml Juniper & Jasmin Skin Cream, 2 x 50ml sample bottles Men’s Post Shave Balm (difference flavours) and a 50ml Men’s Anti Dandruff Shampoo.

Then…to stand a chance of winning a gift hamper, all you need to do is then provide feedback on the new products you’ve sampled. The gift hamper contains: 200ml Skin Cream, 250ml Post Shave Balm and a 300ml Shampoo (you may choose any variants).




*Skin Clays Face Mask Review by the Pink Mermaid*

I had the absolute delight of meeting a really passionate woman with my side kick Kashie.

Karen Vosloo is an entrepreneur of note. She runs her own little business from her home making clay products, ” Skin Clays by Kai”.

Her ample samples given to Lily Storm meant Kashie and I could try all the different products and share with the experimenting. I tried the French Pink Clay face mask. It comes in a 30g glass jar. I split it with Kashie and managed to get 2 full applications, so a 30g jar can get four applications.

Firstly, you add about 2-3 teaspoons of the powder into a bowl or cup. Add a few drops of water and stir till you get a thinnish paste. Mine was a little watery cause I added too much water, but it was fine. It mixes well and quickly so no heavy mixing required.

Once mixed I applied to my face. It goes on easily. I put it all over over my face - T zone, forehead and didn’t worry that some got in my hair.

I was told by Karen that I should sit in the bath with it so when it dries it can fall into the bath water. The water then re-activates it. It’s good for your whole body.

It started drying quite quickly depending on how thick the paste is when you make it. It had a little stinging sensation as it dried out. Nothing scary, I just thought it must be working (that whole ‘no pain no beauty gain’ phrase was in my head). But once it dried it was fine. It REALLY hardens. I loved that it did. Like when you talk it cracks. So after ten minutes or so I felt like I was ready.

I just washed it off in the shower, no need for a facecloth even. It washed off easily enough and it doesn’t stain the bath. If anything it seems to just dissolve in the water.

My face felt divine. Fresh and light, very CLEAN. It didn’t even dry my skin out, nor did it feel oily. It was just perfect actually.

I didn’t even feel the need to put a moisturizer on ( I should though). It just felt like a good old fashioned clay mask, the kind I remember my aunts used to use when I was a smally.

I liked that it hardens properly, I like the colors that it comes in (an old fashioned green and a classic dusty pink).

It gets two thumbs up from me!

The Pink Mermaid

PS: Watch this space for a review (yes, from a real guy!) on the new Skin Clays Post Shave Balm!