Sunday, December 21, 2008

Lux Loot!

It is almost Christmas and I will have to say, I am going on a vacation for a while. Technically, I will not be slacking for the next few days, I am simply taking a leave of absence. I do not think the posts will be missed though since everyone will be taking their vacation too. It is Christmas after all! :)

On this note, I want to great all the beauty gunkees a Merry Christmas! :)

The other day, I was in Makati at Valero corner Salcedo I think *hehe* I rarely go to Makati so forgive me if I am a bit geography-challenged. Anyway, there was a LuxAsia sale in the same building where Raffles had a sale (they had cheaper Corelle and Pyrex stuff!). LuxAsia is the distributor of luxury items and at first I was reluctant to go to this sale but my husband told me there were more Shiseido products this time than in their last appearance at the MegaTent sale. I went and I was not disappointed!

Shiseido Sun Care Sunblock SPF 50 PA+++ was only 999.00 Php when the original price is 1,800 Php! I just bought a couple of boxes of SPF 50 from Shiseido Rockwell and the manufacturing date said 02/07, and the ones I got from LuxAsia says 03/07 but of course, these are stickers. I only bought one from LuxAsia because I still want to closely compare the consistency. The smell was the same but the consistency seems to be different since the one from Rockwell that I got is more creamy. It could just be paranoia, I am yet to conclude that they are of the same quality. I also bought sunblock for the body which was sold at 1,175 Php at LuxAsia it is more than two thousand at Shiseido boutiques.

I also tried the YSL Touche Eclat concealer in number 2 and I thought it did not do much for my raccoon eyes, yet a few minutes after application and a few minutes away from the store, I looked in the mirror in our car, and my eyes seemed to really look better! They were sold at 1,200 Php, I better buy one of those on their next sale!

I bought (finally!) a gift box of StriVectin which had inside StriVectin for the eyes, StriVectin SD and StriVectin Anti-Oxidant. I have not used this yet, I am currently doing a patch test on my hand to see if the Clinique and StriVectin combination will irritate my skin. So far, so good, no bumps yet. :) The set was just a bit over 3,000 Php which is really cheap considering that a tube of StriVectin SD can easily fetch for 8,000Php.

So there's my loot for this week. I better start saving up again because well, I have spent a lot! *wahaha!*

Reviews on StriVectin to follow. I really need to use it first before releasing a review so I will not have to retract anything later. :)

Friday, December 19, 2008


Rating: 5/5

In my quest to find a cheaper moisturizer and eye cream, I cam across Clinique's Rinse-Off Foaming Cleanser because it came free with the other loot I got for buying the All About Eyes Rich Moisturizer and the Dramatically Different Moisturizer, (both have been reviewed in this site). If you are wondering what other stuff I got, I got plenty *hehe*. I got a free faux leather purse, a canvas purse (that can be used as a make-up kit), a travel size Dramatically Different Moisturizer, Rinse-Off Foaming Cleanser, Sample Tube of Pore Minimizer and another tube of something I have not checked out *hehe* I have too much gunk in my hands. :) I am not complaining of course. I also got a tube of lip gloss, a small compact of foundation too. Some of the loot I got because I have a Citi Rustan's Gold and apparently that card works when you are in Rustan's after all. You get extra freebies!

So going back to the Rinse-Off Foaming Cleanser, I like it because it does not dry my skin, it's priced reasonably and comes in a giant package so it lasts you a long time. They have different products for different skin types, I am type II so they gave me this. Consult the Sales Associate so they can give you what matches your skin. I also like how it feels on my skin. The bubbles are also rich and soft and it leaves me with a nice fresh glow after washing my face. The packaging is light and practical. It does not have a strong scent so you almost do not notice it is there, not that it smells bad.

I recommend this because it's not expensive but gentle and effective. I have used it for three months now and still no breakouts. :)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Beada Beads

Rating: 4/5
While I was in Boracay, I realized that I have left my Clinique facial wash (which I will review eventually *hihi*) and so I used my sample tube of Shiseido The Skincare Purifying Cleansing Foam which is like the previously reviewed Shiseido The Skincare Extra Gentle Cleansing Foam except that it is not gentle. It has beads and I was thinking, the beads were not that many and the beads did not feel rough on my skin, I was thinking it was alright if I used it more than twice a day in Bora. I mean I wash my face in the morning, after the beach and before I sleep, that's at least three times a day and I stayed in Bora for four days! *yikes!* No wonder my face got really dry after, I was blaming the Shiseido Suncare SPF50 PA+++ that I use everyday anyway!

Note to self, I must not use the exfoliating facial wash more than once a day. If you ask me, one should just exfoliate twice a week and several days apart. I just thought that... nah... I left my facial wash and I had no other alternative.

To avoid dryness, you can also use the Shiseido make-up remover which I will talk about next time. You can use this product to remove the waterproof sunblock. This is oil-based so this is not for those with oily skin and you must wash again with facial wash after using this product lest you want to look like buttered fish. :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Bubbles!

Veena, my sister in-law went to the States for three weeks and among the loot that she gave us as "pasalubong" (gifts the person who just got back gives to people who did not go anywhere :) ) is a Bath and Body Works Winter Candy Apple Deep Cleansing Soap and a Winter Candy Apple Hand Sanitizer. The Winter Candy Apple scent smells so great I want to eat it *hehe*! It also comes in a real festive color with blue beads for a deep clean!

The scent reminds me of Victoria's Secret's Endless Love.

It is Christmas after all, so why not bring the Christmas Cheer to your bath! I would love to try the glittering body wash and the lotion! They are on sale on their website!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Hair Ye, Hair Ye

I do not know about you but hair has been a problem for me and have been plagued by it since adolescence. I mean I have, like all other maybe, resorted first to plucking. This was painful but after a while the skin gets numb. It hurt my eyes though more than the skin so I eventually gave up on this method. Most of my younger years were spent not wearing sleeveless because I did not know what to do with all the hair. My mom suggested a cream that melts the hair away.

The product is called Veet. It's essentially just a lotion that burns the hair. It comes with a spatula and a not so appealing scent. You are supposed to clean the skin, dry it, apply the lotion, leave it on the skin for a few minutes and then use the spatula to remove it. Note though, that the time may vary depending on the sensitivity of your skin, the thickness of the hair among others. If your skin is sensitive, the skin begins to sting while you use the spatula. Also, if the hair is too thick, some of the hair may still remain. When you use the spatula, you will notice some of the hair going with the spatula.

I used this several times but it was stinky and it kind of stung so I was worried that in the process of using it I might be burning my armpits. :)

The hair grows still thick because I do not think it burns to the root, in effect it's just like shaving but it's more expensive. I could be wrong, but this is how I look at it.

This product is effective, I mean it really tries to get rid of the hair. I just think I would rather shave than go through all the trouble of having to grow my hair long enough so I can burn them. I do not like staying away from my sleeveless blouses too long.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Sun Kissed

Rating: 3/5

I love reading the Beauty Awards issue of Cosmopolitan because I really try out the products that they have there if the products intrigue me. This was how I ended up trying Glam Shine of L'oreal, Estee Lauder's Thermal D Idealist and the Nivea Lip Gloss among others.

Today, I feel like talking about the Nivea Lip Gloss in nude. I found the nude lip stick sexy but I later on found out that this color is simply not for me. It makes me look more anemic than I really am and well... the ghastly look is not what I am aiming for. I cannot make everyday Halloween! Anyway, I came across a Beauty Award issue and sa the Nivea Lip Gloss article and ad and thought to myself, I am going to try this gloss. This was of course before my long-term affair with Ilog Maria's lip balm with peppermint.

The very day I tried it on, I got the same rashes I got from The Body Shop's Vitamin E Lip Care SPF 15. I was so disappointed because the color really looks so yummy! It's like cinnamon and it's all sparkly. I tried it again for the heck of it after my rashes were gone and well, that second trial invited the rashes back to my lips. That was the end of my Nivea Care Lip Gloss. I tossed it out!

If you are the type whose lips are not too sensitive then go for Nivea, it really has nice shades but if your lips are sensitive, try and be more conservative about the glosses taht you try. :)

Rave for Kiehl's Creme de Corps

Just an update on my parched skin from too much Bora and sunblock, I will not have to resort to Lush's Dream Cream *yay*! This means no stinky gunk on my skin! *woot* Creme de Corps did its job in just a few days. My skin is more hydrated now. Still a bit dry but if i continue using the lotion it should go back to normal soon... If I continue using it. Sometimes I no longer bother because I am going to be late for work *hehe* but so far the texture of my skin has improved immensely!

I recommend this lotion for those who are suffering from really dry skin. They have a lighter formula if you find the lotion too creamy for your taste. From my chalkboard skin that allows me to draw three dimensional graphs, Kiehl's Creme de Corps has managed to turn my skin to a skin moist enough to disallow me from writing anything on it!

Lip Service

Rating: 2/5
Unless mandated by the doctor, I am not the type of person who consciously tries to drink enough water in a day. As a result, my lips tend to chap. In the past I have tried several fixes and got burned. The ones I have tried that worked are Ilog Maria lip balm and Kiehl's #1 Lip Balm with SPF 15, both products I have reviewed in the past.

Today I choose to review The Body Shop's Vitamin E lip care stick with SPF 15. This was too oily for me and I found my lips having rashes. At the end of the day, my lips were not kissable. Literally, I could not kiss because my lips became too rough and itchy.

I do not recommend this to those who have very sensitive lips like me. If you want lip balm that has a hint of peppermint and is soothing as well as effective, go for
Ilog Maria Lip Balm. I swear by it. They accept local and international orders. :)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Dry Patch

Rating: 3/5
When I travel, I bring with me liquid soap. I used to bring my Vanilla scented shower gel from The Body Shop but I have emptied my small bottle already. Most of the time though, and for particularly long trips, I bring with me Dove moisturizing body wash. Since a lot of people have given me Bath and Body Works shower gel, I tried using it. I use it everyday because the smell is great. I have been using White Cherry Blossoms and the smell is just so yummy. I was also given a matching lotion which also smells yummy! I have emptied that bottle already and I have moved on to Japanese Orchids and it also smells wonderful.

However, since I do not have time to apply lotion in the morning and I am too lazy to do this too, I have found my skin drying. I am now using my emergency lotion Creme de Corps of Kiehl's in the hopes of resurrecting moisture on my skin. If this does not work, I will have to try the stinky but effective Dream Cream of Lush. I do hope the Kiehl's lotion works!

Eye Clinique

Rating: 4/5
From my last post, you might be wondering what eye cream I am currently using. I have tried Estee Lauder ANR for the eyes and so far this is the best that I have tried. I mean I have tried Shiseido too and it was ok, Estee Lauder though is the best I have tried. Since I got married and I wanted to be more practical *sheepish grin* I have decided to go with a cheaper brand. I just wanted to see if it would work just the same since it is a sister company of Estee Lauder. I tried Clinique All About Eyes Rich and well, I do not think it is doing much for my eyes. Maybe my eyes need my cream to work harder. I noticed that it softens the lines around my eyes but it seems my wear and tear is more powerful than the repair that Clinique can perform. For a while I have contemplated on using Stri-vectrin. A serum that is supposed to help reduce stretch marks but instead of following the instructions of the package, people started using them for their wrinkles and low and behold, they found out that it is a nice substitute to BoTox. I just do not know if it has the same side effect when you try to frown but can't because you seem to be always smiling when on BoTox. *peace sign to those who are doing this*

Clinique All About Eyes Rich is so much cheaper than other eye creams. It does not have an applicator though which I think is not hygienic. I got the rich cream type because I thought this will be more effective. Maybe next time I will try the other version.

Rants of a Beach Bum

Rating: 4/5

I have been using Clinique's Dramatically Different Moisturizer for two months now and while I did not have any major breakouts and for a while I felt like my face was amply moisturized, after my Boracay trip recently, I have found my face becoming dry. This is probably because of the amount of waterproof sunblock that I have applied on my face and the lack of sleep and lack of water during the entire vacation plus all the partying. I really can't blame my face for going crazy. I hope it goes back to normal soon.

This moisturizer is soh much cheaper (you will be very surprised!) than other brands! Plus, it comes in such a big bottyle! It has been more than two months (almost three actually) and I am not even halfway in emptying the bottle! The pump is great too! On my way to Bora, there were no spills but on our way to Manila, there was a little sign that it was about to spill but it did not.

I am also back to dark undereyes because after I started the initial program of the Earth Therapeutics Hydrogel Mask for the Eyes, I stopped. I just thought it was too much of a hassle to wait for 30 minutes to remove the two patches that goes off clean (without any trace of residue) when peeled. I am the laziest person! Now I am starting over because my eyes look terrible. Especially since I have been soh very busy lately because of the end of term things I have to do.

I also started taking Feosol (Ferrous Sulfate), not for vanity mind you but for health reasons (okay maybe partly for vanity too, my nails are beginning to look pale and I was wondering too if this can improve my undereye). It's only 250mg and I only take it once a day. A few years ago I was borderline anemic. A few months ago, I was declared anemic by the doctor. I hate eating liver so I was glad when she asked me to just take Ferrous Sulfate.

I have a bunch of blogs I was not able to post because I was just doing them during my gap time (my nothing to do moments :) Belle de Jour has this on the planner, still can't wait to use mine this coming year!).

Sorry for being such a slacker, I promise to update more regularly.

One Month of FitFlops

I have been using my FitFlops for a month now (I wrote an entry when I first got them, read it here), I don't wear them at home but at work I wear them all the time (one of the reasons I love my job) and I must say, I really feel they are effective. I have just been to Bora and I was able to notice how more toned my legs are and some sections of my thighs, mostly the front part... pardon my ignorance *snickers*.

My knees now hurt less because the FitFlops absorb the shock. Moreso, since I bought the WalkStarII with the inner leather, it is so much more comfortable.

My lower back now has an arc that has long been gone. Unfortunately for me, the FitFlops do not work for my abs and since I have stopped doing crunches, I am stuck with flabs instead of abs. What I am sure of though is that buying my FitFlops was a good call.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Blocking Options

Rating: 4/5
Sorry for not updating for a couple of days, I was in Boracay since Friday and we only flew in yesterday night to Manila. It was such a great long weekend getaway! We bumped into a lot of friends and ended up partying with them every night we were there! This was supposed to be the second leg of our honeymoon. Details will be posted in my wedding blog Beyond I Do's *snickers* shameless plugging!

Anyway, on to our review. Today, I feel like reviewing Nivea Sunblock SPF 50. I bought this some years ago simply for the purpose of sharing it with others. I bring with me all the time Shiseido Sun Care SPF 50 PA+++ but the bottle is too small that it might not enough for sharing. Out of curiosity, I tried the Nivea SPF 50. It was effective (in the period that I used it) but it was very sticky and it tends to leave a white cast. It also takes a while before it dries. Make sure you get it dry first, lest you will look like a Kabuki mask once you dip into the water!

For those on a budget, this is a great sun block though. If you want it to work, make sure you bring this around with you as you will need to reapply after you take a bath.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Bizarre Bazaar

Since it is the season of going to bazaars and us trying to find the best bargains around, I figured I might as well get give a review about a beauty gunk's kind of bazaar stall.

I was able to catch them a few years ago at a bazaar at World Trade Center. This bazaar was especially for cosmetics and beauty so most of the stalls then were about beauty products however, this bazaar highlighted brands like Lancome, Shu Uemura, L'oreal and Maybelline among others. I went crazy then and bought five thousand peso worth of cosmetics! I know I am crazy! Most of those things I did not even need and to this day have not really used outside the house. For one, the shades were not flattering. When you go to the bazaar, there are no testers, so you just buy these based on looking at the box, sometimes they let you open the box. I do not know if this is true with all their products but most of what I bought were not very good anymore. For one, the Shu Uemura eye brow liner that I bought would not write anymore. I mean, if you really insist on using that, you can hurt yourself. They are lucky because we do not live in a litigious society or I am sure they would have been sued already. The Maybelline lip glosses had funky smells already which of course I did not notice at first because I have not owned Maybelline lip glosses prior to this. It was such a waste because I got so many tubes to give away as gifts but after, I was so embarassed to give them away! The Lancome Juicy Tube was totally not usable anymore and I have to throw it away one of these days when I think of cleaning my stuff *sheepish grin*. I also got a Maybelline mascara which was still okay fortunately. I got a Lancome lip lacquer and this was also good but the color is a bit crazy, you have to be bold to use it. I got two Shu Uemura lipsticks and the color just won't appear on my lips. I am not a fan of Shu Uemura, all my lipsticks are either Estee Lauder or Shiseido so I thought this bazaar was a great way of trying out Shu Uemura, much to my demise, the colors just won't run on my lips. Nada. I tried my wrists and no sign of color too. I had to wonder if I was six again and was applying plastic lipstick!

After my experience I really do not trust bazaars for make-up anymore but if you cannot help it, here are some tips.

  • Just buy products that you have used before

  • At least you would know if the product is not good anymore.

  • Do not go shopping crazy
  • <
    If possible, buy a few items first and test if they are still okay. You can buy one item and go to the comfort room and check if the quality is still okay, if it is, then go ahead and buy more, if not, then at least you already know and you can stop yourself from buying more. Check the smell and consistency, if it's funky, it must be expired.

  • Know the actual prices of the products

  • Make sure you know the actual prices so you are sure you are indeed getting a deal. I mean if it is just a few hundred bucks, stick to the newer stocks at the mall, at least if that is no good, you can always return them.

If you have other bizarree bazaar experiences, do share them here. We can learn from each other.

Oh and yeah, if you are wondering which bazaar this is, I am not really sure of the name as I have forgotten but some of the products still had Rustan's price tags on them. I am not saying they were Rustan's but they could be the consigner too, come to think of it, all brands I got are all L'oreal brands.

BTW, did you know that L'oreal already bought The Body Shop?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My Kind of Sunblock

Rating: 5/5
Sorry, I have not been posting for the past few days because I have been very busy trying to do all the work that I can this week because I won't be around this Friday. I will be going to Boracay with my husband! *yey*

Anyway, since we will be going to Boracay and I just got back from the mall to buy two fresh bottles of Shiseido waterproof SPF50 PA+++ for the face and body, I might as well review this. This is my nth bottle. I have lost count already of the number of bottles I have consumed. I used to collect them just in case there will be promos in the future *wahaha* you know, the kind where you exchange containers for goodies, but alas, this is never to be for luxury cosmetic brands. Shiseido is midrange, I mean there are far, far more expensive brands by the way but still, it is more expensive than umm... Coppertone. I like this particular sun block because it is not sticky and not smelly. It has a distinctive smell but it's not a stinky smell... I actually like it now. This is also very effective. I mean, I love beaches and I love being under the sun and whenever I do get out into the sun, I always use Shiseido. I have never gotten sun burn and my skin does not darken as much when I use Shiseido. When I got back from my honeymoon people could not believe I actually went to the beach. :)

Since this is waterproof you can get their Sunblock Remover which I can review next time. I do not bother with the remover because... I shall reveal this in due time *hehe*.

The bottle is great because it is light, sporty in color (same color as the Shiseido waterproof SPF 50 PA+++ for the face) and best of all, it does not spill. A little goes a long way and it is not difficult to apply. This does not leave a white mask like other hideous sunblock formulae out there. I have tried other sunblocks and well, I will review them next time *hehe*! You might be wondering why I use a Shiseido sunblock for the face and another for the body. The other one is creamy while the one for the body is not as creamy, it's a bit runny actually. The creamy one is easy to apply in the face and goes on thicker. The one for the body and face is more runny so that when you apply it on the face, the danger is for this to get in your eyes, also it does not go on the face as thick as the one especially for the face. Finally, the face is more compact to carry around.

The Shiseido sunblock for the face and body SPF 50 PA+++ waterproof fetches for 2500 Php. All Shiseido outlets are giving a 10% discount to all Citibank Credit Card holders. Also, make sure you get a record because if you accumulate fifty thousand worth of purchases you can then be part of the Shiseido Circle and you can get free facials among other perks! :)

Friday, November 21, 2008

Belle de Jour Planner 2009

Rating: 4/5

I know I am to post beauty products here but I have already posted on FitFlops so I thought, what the heck, I'll post about planners too! I know planners are pretty in this season. At around this time, for the past two years (I am kind of a late bloomer since I do not drink coffee :) ), I would be in a coffee shop gulping green tea latte or something that is not coffee and my then-boyfriend would be gulping down the coffee of his choice. I would be very anxious to fill up my Spark Of Hope card from Starbucks. Not this year though as I have discovered this year (What did I tell you? Late bloomer!) about the Belle de Jour planner. It is only 598 Php. I got mine for 568 Php and with free delivery as I reserved early and paid early. I also got a Mikaela card that will give me a free hair cut and treatment on my birthday! You see, I found out about this a few months into the year already when I already drank my way to a Starbucks planner! Why do I want this planner you say? There are many reasons!

I like this planner because it has so many coupons. While most require a minimum purchase and then gives you a measly 10% off (such an ingrate, I am *sheepish grin*), there are coupons that gives you Buy 1 Take 1 deals like the five coupons from Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf. What's so much better is that I like Coffee Bean, I love their leather couches *hehe!*! Now, I can get a drink and get one free, perfect for my husband and me! :D

Another thing that I like about it is that it has certain spaces for things that you just want to do during the 5-minute gaps, it has a space for the most difficult tasks you have to put out of the way during the week, it has a space for your goals be it financial, career, personal, etc. I am in no way related to those who came up with this planner but I am loving the idea. Plus, there are BDJ events that you can attend throughout the year! The planner has tips too on power dressing, accessories, shopping and more!

I highly recommend this to those who are into planners. I hear they are also available in Powerbooks outlets. Try to check it out online too for more information!

What I do not like about the planner is that the paper is not that thick and it is bound using a spring. Mine is still intact though. Also, the way the inner cover is glued is a bit lumpy but other than that, I do not have complaints. There was one typo that I have seen but not really major. If you ask me this is more sulit. They also have a charitable institution so you need not feel guilty about switching from Starbucks to this one!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bubble Bliss

Rating: 5/5
I remember, when I was so stressed (and helplessly addicted to Lush products) with my masteral thesis, I decided to splurge on a Creamy Candy Bath Bubble Bar which costed, if I remember correctly around 300 Php. This is for just one bar. One bar that is meant to be used once. Being the thrift that I was, I decided to ground the Bubble Bar into pieces and just add little by little to the bath tub.

I did not even consume more than half of the Bubble Bar and I already had a mountain of bubbles in the tub. I am talking about soft, small, yummy-smelling bubbles all over the tub. The bubbles massaged me as I got into it. For maximum relaxation effects, use warm water and dim the lights of the bathroom if you can.

This took away my mind from my thesis until my fingers started to prune and I had to really get out of the tub of bubbles. So I rinsed and started thinking again about the recent obstacle in my then-masteral thesis. What is lovely though is that, though you have finished bathing, you can still smell yourself, smelling as lovely as ever!

I smelled of sweet, sweet candy! I highly recommend this for your "me" time. You will want to eat yourself (okay, that did not come out nice...) after.

Remember, if you ground the ball, you can actually use this four times. I was able to use the bubble bar for four bubble baths.

Downside of this product is that this is drying. I would not have bubble baths like this everyday. Of course, it is not everyday that you feel stressed. :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Eye Patch

Aye, Cap'n Jack! Just wanted to do that *snickers*, it's not at all related to this post.

I have mentioned in my previous post that I am experiencing dark undereye problems right now. Well, since I still cannot convince myself to get the Shiseido Bioperformance Super Eye Contour Cream, I will have to make do with other solutions. I received an Earth Therapeutics HydroGel Under-Eye Patches. I did not try it right away because at that time I was using the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Eye Recovery Complex which was effective by the way but also downright expensive.

One night, out of desperation, I reached out for a pack of the Earth Therapeutics patch and tried it. I was surprised that it was so easy and convenient to use. For one, it's just a patch and the patches are contoured especially for the under-eye so placing them under your eyes is especially easy. It did not drip nor run to your eyes or cheeks, it just stayed put and the smell was nice too. I had to wear it for thirty minutes and then all I had to do was take it off. After, I applied some eye cream as it is part of my normal routine before sleeping.

The following day, I noticed that the darkness has lessened (not banished completely but noticeably lighter). I also noticed that my under-eye was not as dry as before. It said on the package that on the first week you use this, you have to use it three times a week. After the first week, you can just use it twice a week.

I went to Beauty Bar to get a box and found out it fares for 525 Php. I am still thinking whether to sustain this or to find another alternative. I am done with my first week and am now moving on to my second week. Given that Beauty Bar is giving away a pink laptop bag (that I do not really need *hehe*), I might be up for it for the challenge and continue using the HydroGel. You are to fill up the card with stamps, each stamp costing 500Php. Once you complete all 20, you can claim your bag. The card did not get here on time so if you have receipts dating back to October of this year, you can just present it to them and they will stamp away.

Of course, I have also tried just placing cold green tea bags on my eyes and that seems to work too except that it is messy and I do not get to do it regularly. Maybe one of these days. :)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Mask of Magnanimity

Rating: 5/5

In my early twenties, I had this really bad Lush addiction. This was my first flirtation with the expensive things *grin*. I think it was Bo Sanchez's book, Live Simply that knocked me back to my senses only to be knocked into a world of consumerism years later.

I liked the Mask of Magnanimity because for one, it scares the hell out of people because you will look like a person from the underworld whil you have this on. *teehee!* I remember the time when my brother first saw me in the Mask of Magnanimity! He thought I was playing Jim Carrey in The Mask! The smell is not that bad do not worry, it just looks really gross but it's alright because it's worth it.

I mean for one, I did not have break outs. I also noticed the blackheads being lessened after using this. It is also very relaxing especially after the gunk has dried on your face and you are about to wash it off.

The downside of this product as any other Lush product is that the expiry date comes too soon because it does not contain preservatives.

The container is a humble ice cream-like container but the price is far from humble. This however, is one of the best products of Lush that I have tried.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Rating: 4/5
I used to swim a lot and so my arms used to be really firm however, after three years of doing the same thing over and over, I grew tired of it and well... I was left with arms that were not toned anymore a.k.a. sagging *eww!*! I knew I had to do something about it and so I got myself some dumbells (because I'm scared of those big machines at the gym), and I got myself the Nivea Skin Firming Lotion with Q10. I put some on my upper arms and true enough the firmness really improved.

I am not a big fan of the smell, nor is my brother who constantly complained (when I was still living in our house, before I got married) about the smell. The lotion is not as creamy as you would expect but this also makes it easier to spread on the skin.

For those who are worried about their skin sagging, I think this is worth a try. This will take some discipline though as you need to apply this everyday. I noticed results after a few weeks of using this. A bottle lasted me about two to three months. I do not know if this helps cellulite but you can check if it does and then do tell me about it. :)

Am I still using this? No. Not because I have gone back to swimming *sheepish grin* but because I do not have the time nor the discipline anymore *sheepish grin again*. If I had enough time every morning I would still be using this.

The price is also reasonable and Q10 is a naturally occurring chemical in our body so you need not worry about adverse effects.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Murad Facial

Rating: 5/5

Before I got married, I was so worried about looking good and so I decided to have facials. My face was a virgin. All my life I have been afraid of facials. I was afraid that I might have breakouts after I go to a facial session. I looked around and ended up at Rustan's Heaven on the Fifth. I surveyed all the places there and ended up choosing between Clarins Institute and Murad. Clarins was more expensive and the names of the facials were not very specific about the procedure unlike with Murad that explained what the facials were for and the potent ingredients. Plus, Murad's facials were cheaper.

They have existing packages already so I got that one for 6K, I think I got 7 facials and 2 eye treatments for free. I also got a nice 3-piece kikay bag which I find really useful for overnights for free.

During the course of my preparation for the wedding, they gave me first an AHA treatment which was for exfoliating the skin. The following week I got Vitamin C treatment for sun damage and for skin renewal as well. The following weeks were all Vitamin C. After that it was once a month. I got so used to the relaxing treatments that I missed my treatments after the first four weekly treatments. I wanted to come back right away but after the weekly treatments you are supposed to just have monthly treatments. I should have gone back already but I have not yet because I have been too busy. Now I go every two months.

They have a more attractive package now than when I got another package.

Vitamin C, Clarifying Enzyme, AHA Sensitive and AHA All Skin Types

ServiceRegular Price Package PriceSavings
4 Facial Treatments6,8003,900 2,900
7 Facial Treatments11,9006,000 5,900
14 Facial Treatments23,80011,00012,800
2 Redness Facial3,8001, 900 1,900
2 resurgence facial 3,8002,400 1,400
2 Murad Classical 1,800 1, 100 700
3 Facial Treatments (AHA) 5,700 3,600 2,100

The ambience is really nice and the technicians are very gentle... well except for the part when they are cleaning your skin of white and black heads. :)

I have not experienced adverse effects while going through the facial. Also, they have a resident dermatologist who is available on certain days whom you can consult for free.

A treatment usually lasts an hour.

The telephone numbers of Murad are the following: Direct line: 816-1806 or Trunk Line: 813-3739 loc. 266

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I was in Trinoma last Sunday with my husband because we volunteered for the Discovery Weekend at OMI at QC. I immediately remembered that this mall houses a Res|Toe|Run shop that sells the FitFlop brand that I have long been lusting after.Mall of Asia, the mall we frequent does not have a shop that sells them yet which explains why I have not purchased a pair yet. I was actually wanting a pair of Sanuks before but now I do not like the Sanuk as I feel they do nothing for my feet.

After reading that FitFlop can tone my thighs and butt and legs, it gave me a good rationalization to get a pair! Imagine, working out while doing my normal routine. I am a teacher so I stand and walk a lot and I thought, it would be great if I can work out my thighs and buns as I go about my work. Well, I have been using it for three days now and I think it is working. Though of course in the past three days I have been to the gym twice. I have not gone to the gym for quite a while because of my busy schedule but now I have returned. Maybe the improvement in my thighs is because of the treadmill but maybe it could be because of my FitFlops too!

I am going to observe the effects on me after a month and then I will report here again. One of my students know about the FitFlop and I asked her to also observe if it works, throwing back her question at me when she asked me if they work. I just bought them and I do not want to generalize. Normally, before I post here, I want to really experience the product first but for this particular instance, I really can't wait. I am just too happy about my footwear, I practically live in them already!

So what did I get for my footwear? I got a WalkStar II which is an improvement to the original design as it has upper leather and extra padding. I got mine in white, after taking forever to choose. The people at Res|Toe|Run were very patient with me and my husband. Special thanks to my husband who really put so much thought into helping me choose the perfect FitFlop!

I considered Fringe too but I figured it was too wild to be worn in class. :)

Bio-Performance Shiseido

Rating: 5/5

Doesn't the name remind you of the superheroes of the eighties? Does Bioman come to mind? Very Japanese right?

When I was doing my masteral thesis, I had to stay up really late so I can work on my program I was taking MSCS at that time. I really lost a lot of sleep, it was fortunate that my mom got me a Shiseido Bio-Performance Super Eye Contour Cream. It did not completely banish my eyebags but my undereye was not very dark and well, instead of looking like a zombie who has never heard of sleep before, I just looked like a person who has not slept for a complete eight hours.

I tried using it for my eyelids and it was a very bad idea. What this does, I think, is to remove creases to remove wrinkles... so putting some on your eyelids makes your creases less visible (in short, it makes your eyes a bit puffy on the eyelids)! At least we are sure that this is effective for our wrinkles.

This is more expensive than the other products of Shiseido and I think the container alone is really expensive. The container is supposed to employ new technology that keeps moisture and other external factors away from the cream inside. Another thing I do not like very much is the fact that you do not know if there is still any left in the bottle because the container is not see through. However, we have to remember that some creams are so senstive that just being exposed to light can ruin their efficacy.

I think I was able to finish two containers and then I stopped because my mom did not buy me another bottle. A few years ago this fared for more than three thousand pesos.

I am now wondering if I should just get another bottle. I have terribly dark undereyes right now. *sigh*

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Delish Nail Enamel Remover

Rating: 5/5

Okay, last time I revealed that I went shopping at The Face Shop. I would like to reveal my latest find and I am loving it! I love their scented The Face Shop Fragrant Nail Enamel Remover. If it's not really taking out the varnish on your nails you would not think it is a nail polish remover. It has the delish smell of strawberries! I mean not the fresh ones, the candy ones. It also comes in blue but I did not bother to smell the blue on *sheepish grin*, I am a sucker for pink things! They also come in nice child proof containers and they do not spill too.

I usually do not remove my nail polish, I wait for my nails to grow enough so that the polish would have been trimmed along with my nails. This of course, looks really gross! I mean, sometimes I get them removed if there are special occasions and I let the professionals at Dashing Diva or California Nail and Day Spa to take care of them.

Why do I hate removing nail polish? I hate it because it dries out my nails. My nails are not really sensitive, in fact, I can make them grow and not have problems at all, however, I do not like the unsightly white stuff after I use acetone. I feel so guilty after. Like I did not do my nails justice.

I have long been looking for a nail polish remover that hydrates and does not damage the nails. I have read from a site that we are not supposed to use alcohol-based nail polish remover. I do not know the contents of this remover but it does not make my nails dry and they are very nice smelling. Oh and yeah, another tip, do not use the nail polish remover more than once per week. I also read this from a site. Apparently, this can damage your nails.

Happy polishing!

P.S. I got myself another hue! I will post it soon. I forgot the color code :)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Spirit of Moonflower

Rating: 4/5
I do not know if you are like me but if you are, then most probably, you have this urge to dash into a store as soon as you see the sign Sale from the window of the shop and get a hold of whatever bargain deal they have. This happened to me one day when The Body Shop had a sale. There were of course so many things in the store. I discounted Body Butter because I bought the Olive Body Butter, yes, the one that comes in gooey green and that smells like a nightmare. I figured it would help my then dry swimmer's skin but to no avail. I ended up using it for my feet- but this should be another post in itself so I will reserve the rest of the story next time.

I also discounted the Olive Oil Body Mist as I still have half a bottle sitting at home.

I was tempted to get the lip and cheek stain but they have thickened the formula and increased the price. After they did this I never bought one again. I have used the original formula for four years if I am not mistaken. I have consumed so many tubes! It used to be my staple lip color - I think, once more, this should be another entry.

So finally, I got to the shower gels and bath creams. I used the Vanilla shower gel before and it smelled beautiful! I like the scent of Vanilla, it is soh sweet! I wanted to explore so I tried The Moonflower scented body and bath cream.

The Spirit of Moonflower Bath and Body Cream smells really nice. You can still be able to smell hints of it after your bath. Also it's creamier than the shower gel giving an illusion that you are moisturizing your skin. Do not get me wrong though, you should not skip moisturizing after this. Dove's Body Wash if you ask me is more creamy than this though.

The best thing about this is that this doubles as a bubble bath! It makes nice bubbles almost like those of Lush's. I have tried the bubble bath of Marks and Spencer and it was not at all impressive. I was not able to use up the entire bottle because the bubble bath they make was just so sad.

The Spirit of Moonflower Body and Bath Cream is really nice to have around when you travel. The bottle does not spill (at least I have not encountered it and I am not the most organized person in the world), it works nice with a loofah or just as a bubble bath.


Downside: It can dry your skin after a while so do not use this everyday. I only use mine on occasions when I want to smell like Moonflower. :)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Face Shop Nails

Rating: 5/5

I have recently discovered the very nice and affordable nail polishes of The Face Shop. I know it is called The Face Shop and if there is anything I will buy there it should be for the face, but still, I really think their nail polishes are fantastic. I am not a nail polish person, in fact, I do not really know how to apply nail polish. I always go to a salon to get my nails done. I have frequented California Nails and Day Spa and Dashing Diva. I will write a review on these visits too next time.

Anyway, since I have zero talent on nail polish application but I do not have the time and I want to save on money on manicure and pedicure... I have to learn how to do it on my own. Do not get me wrong, I did not give myself a manicure. When I go to salons, I always ask the technician to just push my cuticles because if you do cut them they will grow thicker and more hideous than before. So essentially, when I ask for manicure, I just really ask them to cut hang nails. I did not attempt this yet. i might end up cutting more than I want.

I bought a nice shade of pink called PK104. I had absolutely no trouble applying it. It went on smoothly! I might get new shades. I was planning to have more adventurous colors on weekends and more neutral colors on weekdays but I found out last night from an informative video that you are not supposed to use nail polish remover more than once a week! Good grief! I almost killed my nails!

The nail polish is made in Korea and they have fabulous shades. Shades that will not make your hands look darker than they are. I like how my PK104 highlights the sparkle of my engagement ring.

The picture above is not the exact shade although from The Face Shop web site, this is the image for PK104.

Salon Shampoo at Home

Rating: 5/5
I think I can start reviewing this product because my bottle is half empty already and I have convinced my sister to start using L'orealElseve with Nutrilium for fizzy, dry and hard to manage hair. First of all, L'oreal is the mother company of Kerastase making Elseve and Kerastase sister brands. And are they sisters!

Elseve smells like a salon shampoo so when you lather it on your hair, it just feels so relaxing! Is it just me who finds that salon shampoo smell relaxing?! Please tell me I am not a freak. If this is not enough, it lathers really well too, with really small bubbles, it makes foams of bubbles on your hair. A little goes a long way. I have been using my bottle for more than a month now and I have really long hair. It has wonderful smell, lather and it is effective too.

My hair was very dry before I started using Elseve but just one wash moisturized my hair. It says on the bottle, Nutrilium is supposed to be micro oil that gets absorbed by your hair immediately. I only tried the shampoo since I do not have enough time to rinse the conditioner though I already got the conditioner I will try it as soon as I get the time. My hair is shiny now and smooth now.

The shampoo is cheaper than those of Lush or Fruits and Passion but is still too much compared to other brands. It retails for 165Php. I have, however, not compared this against other shampoos in terms of the number of uses (or servings if you like )per bottle. I might try this one of these days.

Still, the smell of the shampoo and the lather and the way it really works makes the price all worth it.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Nivea Naivete

Rating: 3/5

I never wanted crow feet so at the age of 21 I have started using eye creams. I started with a cheap solution first. I used Nivea Visage. This of course, did nothing for my eyes. However, putting something on my eyes felt better than putting nothing. I do not know if this works. I was able to use three tubes but because I was still young then, I did not really notice much changes. It does not promise to reduce puffiness or to reduce fine lines, it just essentially moisturizes. It has been years since I last used this and I do not think I will go back. I have tried far too many eye creams to go back.

This eye cream though I must say is economical. Not only is this cheaper, it also just requires you to dab very little because if you dab on too much, you will not be able to get all the gunk absorbed. This does not have a scent, it is small and light since it comes in a very simple tube packaging so it is easy to bring around.

I have not tried DNAge though but I have heard people ranting about this line. Maybe one of these days I will give it a try. Right now I am using a Clinique product. I want to finish the entire tub first before I give a critique on that.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Not So Super

Rating: 1/5
I know this is rarely discussed but I will anyway mainly because this particular deodorant is very expensive and it promises the moon and the stars. It could just be me and my body hormones but it could also be the product and since I did say I will write about personal experiences here, this is what I will really do.

I did not like the Superbly Efficient Anti-Perspiration Deodorant at all. I tried this product simply because I was obsessed about getting whiter underarms before my wedding without subjecting to laser means. I have read from somewhere that the darker your skin is, the more heat it will absorb from the laser and the more prone you will be to getting burned. I do not know how true this is but I have seen people on the news complaining about laser operations that did not go very well.

Anyhow, I was really at Kiehl's to get their Creme de Corps but this product caught my attention and so I tried it even though it was really expensive for a deodorant. I tried it and while I did not smell, I still perspired much to my horror! I gave this product a chance and used it for one week and got the same horrid effect and so I never really got to finish the tube.

Another thing I do not like about this product is that this does not dry easily and the applicator is far from being easy to use.

Oh well... I think I will not be purchasing this product agian in this lifetime.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sun Block Foundation

Rating: 5/5

I think I have mentioned in passing that I am addicted to sunblock. I am, thanks to my mom. Sun block is supposed to be good for your skin as it shields your face from the sun that can give you dark spots and early wrinkles. UVB and UVA rays are harmful and they do not always come with the sun. Even when the sun is hidden there can still be UVB rays so always protect your skin!

I have a Shiseido Sun Protection Compact Foundation SPF 34 PA+++ that was given to me by my mom. However, because when she bought this, I was not with her, it does not match my skin tone. It's a tad bit lighter than my actual skin tone. I need to not go out for months before I can use this and not look like espasol (a Filipino delicacy rolled over something like confectionary sugar). My sister has a lighter skin tone so she uses it. She is not fond of make-up but she does go to cosplays and when she does, she wears make-up. I must say though that the foundation is really nice. It will make your skin look like porcelain except that it has a matte finish. I am not into foundation that much or any tinted stuff I need to apply on my face but this one, I will not mind applying on my face, provided that it matches my skin tone of course.

If you are looking for a sun block and foundation rolled into one that will not cake even when it is hot, and will glide on smoothly on your face, this sun block is for you.

The last time I checked the price of this foundation is more than one thousand but it has been a couple of years so just check it out. If you want to save moolah, you can just buy a refill and then use a compact mirror in applying the foundation. This will save you a few more bucks.

Result: porcelain-like, matte finish and sun protection

Squeaky Clean

Rating: 3/5

I am a big fan of Estee Lauder but I am not a big fan of Perfectly Clean Splash Away Foaming Cleanser because I think their main objective is really to give you perfectly clean face. I feel like it cleans my face too much that I end up with a dry face. I was never a fan of squeaky clean skin. I do not like my skin to make the sound a plate makes when it is very clean.

It has only been two days since I switched back to Shiseido the Skin Care Gentle Cleansing Foam and my skin has improved. I just tried this facial wash because it came free with my Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrate. I have another tube which I gave to my husband because he was getting a breakout for a reason still unknown to us. I asked him to try this for the night and then I applied him some Shiseido SPF 50 PA+++ and the following morning all bumps were gone. Why the sunblock? I heard that this dries your skin too. So I figured without a moisturizer it should help him get rid of the bumps. It might have been a fluke but the following day all bumps were gone!

In any case, the tube is still with him but I have no idea if he uses it still. I will have to ask him later.

Another thing I do not like about this is that you have to use a great amount just so you can have a nice lather unlike with the Shiseido, just a little amount makes a nice lather already.

The plus of this product though is the wonderful scent. You can choose to try it, who knows, the formula might have been made for you. The price of this facial wash is cheaper than the rest of the other Estee Lauder products.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Goodbye Cellulite!

Last time I posted about an anti-cellulite lotion that is effective but a tad bit expensive. Here is a lotion gel that is anti-cellulite, effective but not as expensive. Nivea Goodbye Cellulite. I know, with a name like that how can you even take it serously, but surprisingly, after I gave it a chance, it was able to do its job. I would have to say that Avon Cellu-sculpt offered more dramatic results, but still at more than half the price less of Avon, it's good enough for me. It has a very cool feel to it that can wake you up from slumberland. The smell is better than that of Avon which is good however, the consistency is what I do not like. It is in gel form and you tend to end up using more. I also feel like it turns into something solid/dried glue-like consistency after you apply it and skin was unable to absorb it but this is tolerable.

I have not really kept track of how long I have had the lotion so as to find out if it lasts as long or longer than Avon. I do not have time to slather lotion in the morning as most of the time my husband and I are scurrying out of the house so early in the morning. Putting on lotion means less sleep. Lotion... sleep... Sleep!

I have used three tubes of this product before I got married so I can tell you that this works. I used this on my thighs and abdominal area.

This is all I have to share for now! :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Rating: 5/5

When I saw the Avon Cellu-Sculpt lotion, I thought my prayer has been answered. I guess it is a girl's dream to finally see all her cellulite gone. Actresses like Sandra Bullock have not been spared from the curse of the dimples in the wrong places. What is more sad is that men do not get to have cellulites! Travesty, I know!

I decided to try this product in the hopes that it will work for me. I was lucky because Avon was having a sale when I got my tube and so I was able to get the bigger tube. I used it for more than a month, applying it religiously to my thighs and abdominal area. Lo and behold, it worked! The dimples are not fully gone, but I noticed that my thighs were smaller than usual.

The scent is not good, however. In fact, the smell is terrible! What I like about this product though is that a little goes a long way and it is relatively easy to apply. I would recommend this for people who are obsessing on their thighs. If you are wondering, I have stopped using this product because I simply do not have time to slather lotion in the morning these days. Maybe someday I will get back to the program again. In the meantime, I have to rely on the good old treadmill at the gym. Then again, even treadmill cannot do a thing for the unwanted dimples. I also find that this is a tad bit too expensive especially since there are other products that are cheaper out there. I will blog about these other products soon! :)

Result: Noticeably trimmed thighs and less
Downside: Funky smell, more expensive than other anti-cellulite creams

Lush Dream

Rating: 4/5
I used to swim 30 laps every other day and while it did wonders for my shoulders and the rest of my body, it did great damage to my skin and hair! My skin was so scaly, dull and dry and so being the beauty gunk addict that I am, I looked for a perfect lotion. I tried the Body Shop's Body Butter first. Since I was looking for dramatic effects, I opted for the Olive Oil Butter. It smelled terrible and the color was icky green but I thought to myself, it might be effective.

Not. It was not at all effective. It did nothing for my skin. My skin was still dry, only now it also stank from the fugly smell of the lotion. So I kept on looking and I found myself reading a catalog of Lush. I know, I must have plenty of time in my hands! It was there that I found out about Lush's Dream Cream. Halle Berry swears by this moisturizer and we all know how smooth, silky and dewy her skin is! In a heartbeat, I was in a Lush Store buying my first ever tub of Lush Dream Cream.

I was not disappointed at all. It did all that it promised. It was also stinky but at least it is effective. It is handmade with no preservatives so the downside is the expiry date. This expires in a little more than six months. Fortunately, I swam every other day so I was really able to consume my tub. You will really feel the difference! It does quench your parched skin!

Now, you might ask me, why switch to Kiehl's Creme de Corps? The smell might not drive me away but my husband can be driven away by the smell! Now that I am married, I find it more practical to stick to Kiehl's. Oh and yeah, this lotion, no matter how humble the container is still on the pricey side.

Result: Smooth, moisturized, dewy, stinky skin :) Hey you take the good with the bad
Downside: Has a quick expiry date

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fee, Fi, Fo, Foam

Raing: 5/5

Shiseido Pureness Gentle Cleansing Foam is very effective for those who tend to have oily skin and even those who tend to have pimples and other blemishes caused by oily skin. This has worked for me in my oiliest of years. I only wished my mom could have discovered this earlier in my life *haha*. My skin was never extremely oily however, it did have its way of making my face shine like an oily pan.

I have used Shiseido Pureness Gentle Cleansing Foam for years until that fateful year when I went to a Shiseido bar in Hong Kong. The sales associate told me not to use the Pureness line anymore as my face is absolutely dry already. I attributed the scaling from the cold winds of March but the woman refused to sell me the Pureness line! (I was shocked and was forced to believe her!) She gave me the samples for the Skin Care line after I also bought the SPF 50 Sunblock (yes the one that I have admitted to being addicted to!) After I tried the Shiseido Skin Care Gentle Cleansing Foam, there was no turning back. I even got to a point where I saved all my points in the SM Advantage Card so I can get myself some of this product for free! Of course the price of this product does not come cheap too. *hehe* Darn these cosmetic companies! :)

The texture of this facial wash is so nice when you lather it up, the bubbles are so small and soft to the skin! I know you might say, aren't all bubbles? But you have to try this to believe it. The scent is really nice too! I am still using this and I really drain the tube up to its last drop because I do swear by this gunk.

And yes, this was my facial wash in the one year that I was preparing for my wedding. :)

Friday, October 17, 2008

Loco for Lotion

Rating: 5/5

I know there are so many gunk for lotion out there. However, I have tried one that actually makes you skin soft as soon as you apply it. There is even a ten-day promise. I cannot vouch for this promise because I was not able to follow the routine religiously for ten days. It's not the lotion, it's me! I am always in a hurry in the morning that putting on lotion is the last thing on my mind. It is nice to use however, for moments when you actually have the time to slather some.

The effective lotion? Kiehl's Creme de Corps lotion. There is a light formula if you do not want the thick one. I bought the thick one just so I am sure I am not getting shortchanged. I want all the moisture the big bottle can offer. The downside? It's a bit more creamy, hence takes a bit more time to get absorbed. You have to let it sit on your skin but it is worth it. You can apply it on dry areas and you will surely notice the difference as soon as you apply it. At least, this is how it is for me.

This is the best body lotion I have tried so far. The scent? Do not ask me about the scent! Haha! It does not have a strong scent, if it even has any at all. Then again, you got lotion so your skin will be softer, if you want to smell nice then you would have used perfume instead. I think a lotion without scent is actually good because this means you will not have to layer your perfume with another scent.

This lotion is more expensive than the usual lotion you can buy in other shops but it is worth it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Peeling, Nothing More Than Peeling

Rating: 5/5

Like all the other brides-to-be, I was also obsessed with the wedding magazines! I read all of them! In one of the magazines, I saw tips on what beauty products to use at a certain age. One of the products caught my attention because apparently, this product is for all ages. I am 28 already so I fear trying products that can tend to dry out my face. I would like to elude the wrinkles for as long as I can. Knowing that this product is for any age, I was encouraged.

I found a reason to go to Greenbelt 5 *wahaha* to lure my then-fiance *wahaha* and when I got there, I was able to get the bottle that promised beautiful, renewed skin in just one night! I think I got it for more than a thousand Pesos.

Being the girl with no EQ, I immediately tried this when I got home. The directions said I should apply it evenly on my face and let it stay there until the following morning. I should wash it with warm water after wearing the gunk overnight. It did not sting at all nor did it itch, though I have heard other people complain about itching. This gunk is colorless and it peels evenly. The downside of these beautiful features though is that it smells like ammonia.

After one night, my skin was indeed whiter (which I did not particularly like, I am worried I might burn my face under the sun), cheeks were rosy and the pores less obvious. Indications on the product are the following: the product is supposed to help dull skin, hyperpigmentation, dark spots and sensitive to chemical treatments.

It's like you scrubbed your face, without having to scrub. The product says you have to use it every other day but when I tried doing that, I noticed my skin being a bit sensitive to my moisturizer so I used it every three to four days. It was really great.

I would recommend this product but remember to put on enough sunblock all day as this is still a peeling product and therefore, you must protect your skin. I have ended up under the sun for prolonged periods of time (like when we went to Laguna to look for my then-fiance's barong) but thankfully, no maps on my face because I used my Shiseido SPF 50 PA+++ UVA/UVB sunblock.

Happy peeling!

Result: Rosy skin and less obvious pores
Downside: This smells of ammonia so remember to ask the Kiehl's sales associate to let you smell it first. It is tolerable for me though and the effects are all worth it.

Monday, October 13, 2008

When It Rains, It Pores

Rating: 3/5

I was obsessed about my pores for a while and so I tried Shiseido Pureness Pore Purifying Warming Scrub ( I know this sounds so much like the Estee Lauder Idealist)and then the Shiseido Pureness Cooling Essence. The Cooling Essence it to be applied on the pores (avoiding the mouth and eye area, maybe because it's drying) night and day. The Pore Purifying Warming Scrub can be used once a week because this has beads that exfoliates.

I tried this but stopped using it because I did not see immediate effects and also, a few days after I bought this, I got obsessed with Estee Lauder's Idealist Thermal-D Refinisher. It won the Cosmopolitan award then. The Shiseido Pureness line is cheaper than the Estee Lauder's Idealist line.

I still have these, do you think I should give it another try? My concern is that Pureness is a line for oily skin, and I am past the oily stage. I am already 28 so while I have bouts of oiliness at times, most of the time, my skin is parched and in need of moisture. I am just worried it might ruin the balance (as if!) of my skin.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

NutriSystem and Acai Berries

Okay, the first time I heard about the name, I thought this was again one of those instant stuff that you put into water and gulp until your mug is empty, leaving an aftertaste of Salmon Shake. I was wrong. This apparently, is not a product inside a can but rather, a service. Yes, you heard me right!

I have long been fantasizing about this, eating healthy food but not having to prepare the healthy food yourself. I have tried 5-day diets and 3-day diets and fat burning soup that in the end, burns me out because of long food preparation and of course, cleaning up afterwards. Fantasy made into reality is what Nutrisystem is.

Nutrisystem is a service that delivers over 100 types of delicious food. Delicious? Let me be more specific, some exampes of these food: Mac and Cheese (I know, is this heaven or what?), Chicken Parmesan (Cheese! Cheese! Cheese! Gotta love 'em), Tacos plus do not think you will have to skip dessert because you don't. Here are some of the desserts available: almond biscotti and blueberry lemon bars. If that is not enough, you will also get to eat not just three times a day but five times a day. Three meals and two snacks! Now how cool is that? So you might ask, how will this make you lose weight.

Essentialy, Nutrisystem offers low glycemic food. Let me translate this to English. Glycemic Index (GI) indicates the effect of carbohydrates and sugar to the blood glucose levels. The lower the GI the slower the sugar and starch is absorbed by the body, the longer the body consumes the food you eat, the longer you feel fuller.

Another concern might be nutrition. The diet contains 55% carb, 25% protein and 20% fat so you need not worry about not getting enough or too much of something. I think you should add fruits though, I do not know if they have enough fiber and other vitamins. A nice fruit suggestion is Acai Berries that will be discussed further on. If you're into exotic and healthy, this is definitely the fruit for you.

Nutrisystem provides different programs for different cases like: females over 60, males over 60, diabetics and males and females specific programs.

Cost of this service/food is 300 USD for a month. That is roughly 10 USD per day. I think that is not so bad at all, if you are living in the states that is... Actually, even if you are not.

Aside from losing weight, another thing that almost everybody wants to do is to look and feel young. One of the ways to do this is to make sure your body gets enough antioxidants. While other people prefer green tea to do the job for them, there is another alternative if you are not into green tea. A product from the Amazon called the Acai (a-sigh-ee) berry has been discovered. They have packaged this now in a form where it is easier to be consumed by us regular people who do not want to get old.

This is one of the top ten products featured in Oprah's Website 10 Superfoods list of Dr. Pericone. If that is not enough to convince you, this also tastes like a mix of berries and chocolate (hmmm... chocolate...). If this is not enough, this is supposed to boost your immune system as well! Remember, earlier I mentioned about lack of fiber in the NutriSystem diet? I think Acai berries will complement NutriSytem beautifully.

Friday, October 10, 2008

My Favorite Shiseido

Rating: 5/5

I started using sunblock a bit late in life because my mom used to believe that sunblock will just make me burn more. Fortunately, Shiseido made her change her mind! She is now a certified sunblock SPF 50 addict and in the process, she has also made me into one.

Now, I can no longer go out of the house without this sun block. Worse, I once tried another formula but the formula was too thick and oily. Shiseido Sun Protection Cream SPF 50+ UVA/UVB for Face is nice because you can easily blend it on your skin, especially when I you have moisturizer on. This comes with PA++ unlike other sunblocks which protects you from aging. It is not too thick and it is certainly not sticky. It has a different smell but it's not bad smelling at all.

Another bonus of this product is that it is waterproof so you can sweat it out and still know that you are protected. I have used this on a very sunny day on the beach, under the glaring heat of the sun while we worked for Habitat for Humanity and it has not failed me yet. I use this with some exfoliating formulas to keep me from having unwanted skin maps on my face.

I love this product so much, that on my wedding day, I put on some even though my makeup artist insisted that I do not put on anything at all. The result? Very nice dewy finish. My make up stayed in tact and beautiful all day! When I say all day, I mean from 8am to 12 midnight!

The packaging is light as it is just inside a sporty blue and orange plastic tube. I never go for overnights or out-of-the-country or out-of-town trips without this thing. As I have said, I too, like my mom, am hooked!

The price of this sunblock is not cheap, I admit that but a tube can last me for several months and I love that it really does its job. It protects my skin round the clock!

If you are wondering how long I have been using this sun block, it has been six years and still counting. :)

Miracle Cream for the Bride To Be

Rating: 5/5
Estee Lauder's Advanced Night Repair Concentrate is indeed a miracle cream. It made my skin glow in just 21 days before my wedding! My then fiance got a great photographer and a great videographer for our wedding and I did not want to waste the money he was investing on them so I wanted to look like the radiant bride I am expected to be.

I did my research and contemplated on diamond peel. However, as I browsed the site of Estee Lauder, I found out about Estee Lauder's pre-wedding program. It comprised of ANR Repair Concentrate and the right moisturizer. I immediately wanted to try this, and so, while this beauty miracle cream is a bit on the pricey side, I took my risk.

I was glad I took the risk because the results were dramatic. I would buy this again if I had too. In 21 days, I was not able to finish it. I only had to apply this before sleeping. I think I have enough to last me another 21 days which I will use 3 months from now. I love this product!

The applicator is a dropper so it's very economical, you do not get to use more than what you need. As any Estee Lauder product, the packaging is also very elegant and luxurious. This is something you want in your cosmetic bag. :)

The price? I'm still glad though that it is not as pricey as La Mer still... Though I have not tried this product. Perhaps someday when I have more moolah to spend! :)

Result: Radiant and glowing skin!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Care for Kissers

Rating: 3/5
I have long been hearing things about Kiehl's lip balm. They say this lip balm is their number one best seller and so when Kiehl's finally got to Manila, I just had to have a tube of their lip balm. I got the one with SPF 15 because I am so obsessed with sunblock. I will share more on that in another post.

I was expecting too much I guess, which explains the tad bit disappointment that I had when I found out that it makes my lips soft only when I have it on. My lips go back to their parched state when it's all gone. It's different from my Ilog Maria lip balm that keeps on working even after it wears off. Plus, this lip balm does not have a pepperminty flavor.

If you are wondering if I still use mine, yes I still do. The only reason I might continue to use it is probably because, it's easier to get than the Ilog Maria lip balm, Ilog Maria is a whole lot cheaper though. On the other hand, it does have SPF15 and Ilog Maria doesn't have any.

Big O

Rating: 5/5
I was listening to the radio when I found out about this new lip gloss called O-Gloss by Smashbox. I have not used Smashbox before but I have to say, this product intrigued me. When you buy this gloss in its pink tube, you can see from the clear colorless transparent applicator that the gel inside is clear. However, once it touches your skin, it turns into another color. In my case, it turns into light pink. The more I apply on my lips, the darker the shade becomes. It's so kewl! The product is said to be able to react to your body chemistry so that the lip gloss shade will always be different for each person. It's like a personalized lip gloss! This retails for 995.00 Php.

A forerunner of O-Gloss is O-Glow which is a clear blush that adjusts to the body chemistry of a person. As a result, the shade is personalized and flattering to the skin tone. This retails for 2,000 Php.

Smashbox products can be bought from Beauty Bar.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Glam Shine

Rating: 5/5

Loreal's Glam Shine really got me hooked. I have been using this ever since this came out. It won a Cosmopolitan award and rightly so because it really makes your kisser shine and sparkle. I like it when the sunlight kisses my lips, it just sparkles like a million diamonds.

This lip gloss is nice because you can do away with lipstick and it still looks really nice. Its formula is not sticky so it's perfect for kissing. :) There are varying shades but my all-time fave is the cherry sorbet 51.

Glam Shine Crystals was the next line that followed Glam Shine. This line is supposed to offer more shine and the applicator for this line is bigger so it's easier to use. However, the shade that I so love is not in this line. I tried one, but the shade is a tad bit too dark for me. I still use it occassionally but mostly it's Glam Shine for me.

This is also more affordable than the other lip glosses around.

Happy glossing!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Honey for My Honey

Rating: 5/5

The best lip balm I have ever tried has a nice peppermint flavor but is made of honey. This balm is made at a honey farm called Ilog Maria in Silang, Cavite Philippines. While it is a bit difficult to buy from the actual bee farm, they provide a convenient delivery system from their web site so you can still enjoy this really yummy and effective lip balm. This does not only work while it is on your lips, it continues to work even when it is off your lips already.

Another bonus is of course, it makes your kisser yummier to kiss. At least that's what my ex-boyfriend told me who happens to be my now-husband. *grin*

The best part about this lip balm is the price, it fetches for 71.50 Php for 16 grams! :)


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Hydra Complete Me

Rating: 3/5
When I bought an Idealist and ANR Eye Recovery Complex, I got for free two jars of Hydra Complete Multi-Level Moisture Creme, one small and one big. This smelled great and felt fabulous on my skin as I apply it. The texture is just wonderful. I wish I could say the same about the long term effect though.

The thing is, it did not do much for my dry skin. When I went to Murad, which I will also blog about next time, to have my skin checked by a resident dermatologist, she said that my skin is a bit dry. I knew that too, since the lines were starting to appear and I just turned 28! Okay, so maybe, partly I am to blame for not drinking enough water...

The nice thing about this product though is that it does not make my face shine like a greasy plate. Plus, it feels like it gets absorbed easily by the skin because the skin does not feel greasy for a long time. I apply sun block after moisturizer and after this, I can almost immediately get the sun block on my face.

I used this moisturizer on my wedding day and my makeup did not melt on my face though it was a really hot day. My face remained dewy.

The packaging is a jar which some people might find unhygienic. There are no special paraphernalia for applying this so essentially, you just stick you fingers into the jar and apply the glop directly on your face.

I did finish up my stock before I switched brands. I actually planned to get the very same jar when I considered the price. *grin* And of course the not-so-dramatic effect. And once more, my expectations were a tad bit too high for reality.

Result: Change was not very noticeable. Skin was not oily at all.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Eye Love It!

Rating: 4/5

When I was in Taipei, I came acroos the Advanced Night Repair Eye Recovery Complex by Estee Lauder. I was then just looking for the Idealist Pore Minimizing Refinisher. I bought this because I do not have eyebags, I have eyeluggages baby! I have had eyeluggages for as long as I can remember. Maybe because I have big eyes too... Then again, do they really have to be dark?

This product comes in a small jar and while this may seem to be unhygienic, as a consolation, it has with it a plastic ball with a handle of course, for application. The small jar lasted me 10 months more or less.

Estee Lauder prides itself for its Advanced Night Repair line and rightly so. This product really reduced the dark circles and puffiness. The lines were there still, yeah, yeah, I know it's just a cream. *pouts* Still can you blame me if I expect a miracle out of a tub that costs an arm and a leg?

Still, I would recommend this anyday.

Result: Less puffy eyes and dark circles gone. Lines stay unfortunately.