Bless My Bag

beauty bagged by a cheeky Filipina

The Body Shop Nutriganics Softening Cleansing Gel Oil | A 98% Natural Option and a Bonus Fave

I have a new goodie from The Body Shop but before I get to that I need to backtrack a bit.  When I personally experienced the Emma Hardie cleansing balm nearly every UK skincare enthusiast was raving about last year my complaint was in our tropical weather the balm just wouldn’t hold its consistency. You had to keep it refrigerated and to be honest unless you had warm running tap water (which not everyone does here) it wouldn’t emulsify super well and just flanneling it off with a damp face towel without rinsing is a total turn-off for overt rinse maniacs like us Filipinas.  It made my skin feel great though and I agreed that natural cleansing oils or balms were the way forward in facial skincare especially for people like me who do have lazy nights where I just want to take my made-up face off  and cleanse with one product.  I still like my Andalou Apricot Pro Biotic Cream Cleanser but that doesn’t remove makeup.  I was hoping for a less expensive alternative that 1. Acted like a cleansing balm but didn’t come in a jar 2. Be mostly based on natural, fairly sourced ingredients without mineral oil, and 3. Retain its consistency locally.  I got my checklist ticked off when I found  Body Shop’s Nutriganics Softening Cleansing Gel Oil which contains fair trade Babassu oil extracted from the nuts of the wild babassu palm tree, found on the outskirts of the Amazon rainforest….and by the way,yes, it does emulsify with water, very well.

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Contains Fair Trade Babassu Oil, 99% of Total Ingredients are from natural origin, 45% of ingredients are from organic farming, natural and organic certified by ECOCERT, NO PARABENS and NO SILICONES

INGREDIENTS:

Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Simmondsia Chinensis Seed Oil , Aqua (Solvent/Diluent), Glycerin, Sucrose Laurate , Sucrose Palmitate, Orbignya Oleifera Seed Oil, Benzyl Alcohol, Salicylic Acid, Limonene, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Juice, Citral, Linalool , Pelargonium Graveolens Flower Oil , Citronellol , Arginine, Buddleja Davidii Extract , Thymus Vulgaris Extract, Malva Sylvestris Flower Extract, Foeniculum Vulgare Oil, Citrus Nobilis Peel Oil, Vanilla Planifolia Fruit Extract, Litsea Cubeba Fruit Oil, Citrus Aurantium Dulcis Peel Oil, Sodium Benzoate, Thymus Vulgaris Oil, Potassium Sorbate, Rosa Damascena Flower Oil.

Price: about Php795 for 100ml at Body Shop boutiques

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HOW TO USE:  Apply a pea sized amount to dry makeup-free skin, or a peso coin sized amount  if you have makeup on.  Yes, don’t wet your face first or else it will emulsify instantly, when that happens you miss out on the oil treatment which removes makeup while treating skin and provides the opportunity for a  good facial massage.

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When you’ve spread the product all over your face and have the oil consistency on, a circular facial massage is highly recommended before rinsing to remove makeup, dead skin and dirt.  Then apply water to the face to have it emusify, do circular motions again to properly cleanse and rinse.  Repeat if necessary.

What I like about this product is for a mid-ranged price you’re getting something that is well sourced, nearly 100% organic and on lazy nights it moves makeup when you massage it in and yes really does feel like an oil-based cleanser or balm that you can store well even in a tropical climate since it comes in a tube.  On the nights when I do have the energy to use makeup remover first and then finish with this I get an exceptionally thorough cleansing experience.  It’s just good to know something like this also has your back on lazy days if you want to skip makeup remover.  You can also try Lisa Eldridge’s facial massage routine before rinsing with water, you don’t have to do the whole 20mins, you can cut it down if you like.

I also have a bonus favorite for this post, the only drawback for me on it is it’s highly scented, it didn’t break me out but I would prefer it unscented.  From the Body Shop as well I also like this Vitamin Aqua Boost Sorbet cooling facial moisturizer with Vitamin E and Soybean Oil.

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24-Hour moisture quench, aqua light texture

The cooling effect isn’t weird, not like menthol at all,  it feels very fresh, sort of like the comfort that after sun products provide on the skin.  It hydrates the way Clinique’s Moisture Surge gel moisturizer seems to do and with a zero greasy feel and matte finish.  It does contain some silicone but that makes it a great thin moisturizer beneath makeup because it also acts as a primer.  Most likely great for girls with normal to oily skin…though I would recommend patch testing it on an area of the face for the day from the Body Shop boutique first before purchasing since it is scented, just to be sure you don’t react.  If you don’t it’s a good one to have if you’re not into greasy or cream moisturizers.  It comes in a frosted glass jar at 50ml.  Err, I’m forgetting the price at the moment but I think it was around Php1200 or a bit more.  Yes a bit pricy, I think the packaging has something to do with that.

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I’m glad The Body Shop has ventured out with their Nutriganics range for example to bring us fairly sourced more natural skincare options, and I also like that they’re developing new formulas and textures in skincare like with the Aqua Boost sorbet.  Stop by your nearest Body Shop boutique at anytime to spot the new items they have to offer, I didn’t think they’d stepped up in many ways and offered many new things beyond their usual until I dropped in for a proper visit.

 

 

 

Hello H&M! Now in Manila| Stuff I Got, Stuff I Wear

Globally acclaimed Swedish clothing line H&M has landed, Manila!  Their grand public opening at SM Megamall was today (did you seriously camp out to get in??).  I got a special opportunity to attend their advanced launch the other night and I availed of their 20% off everything discount for the evening.  Okay, nosebleed-while-posing aside I think this short style feature turned out quite alright.  I like clothes, I don’t buy clothes often, probably do about 3-4 small sprees a year shoes included because I am very particular.  Blogging about fashion while fun is out of my comfort zone, plan to practice more though.  A couple of friends and bloggers encouraged me to ‘coz some said they love the way I “throw it on” or “dress like that”.  No, I didn’t bother to put on makeup, but the bare minimum was I did have some mascara on, lol.  There won’t be lots of talk about the clothes, but a comment or two about why I got them and how much they were should be in order.

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H&M Athletic top RRP Php1,190.00, I like how this makes someone as petite as me look like I have wider shoulders.  It’s also got built in non-underwire support.

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Since I didn’t manage to get any NYC souvenir for myself while I was there (check this, the only NY-grammed stuff I got were my Dad & bro’s caps at the airport) better late than never!  Thanks to H&M I now at least have a faux NY souvenir, LOL and it’s a lovely laid back navy hue. By the way these boots…they don’t just look good, they’re super comfy.

H&M L.O.G.G. lined NY pullover RRP Php1,190.00, ankle boots Php1690.00

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I was checking the light in the LCD of my camera, was holding the remote and shot one lol!  Couldn’t resist this fuzzy plum pullover and I like that it has a wide neckline. Plum pullover RRP Php1190.00 (H&M earrings from SG)

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Brown lace-up boots Php1690.00

The pricing of H&M is extremely good for the value they put out, and the on-trend pieces and collections are constantly fashion forward.  I have a Tita who lived in Germany for 14 years and when she moved back her with her husband she hoped and hoped that H&M would come in because of the affordable yet awesome clothes they have to offer.  Well, they’re here now!  The biggest store has just opened today at SM Megamall and watch out for another huge H&M opening in SM Makati by November or early December.

By the way, @hm_asia is NOT the official H&M IG account (we were told by its marketing directo) so just tag the official @hm IG account and use the hashtag #hmphilippines for your posts.

Beauty Between My Highlights | The Crux of Really Reading That Bible

“8 Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.”  JOSHUA 1:8 (NLT)

I’m not surprised that for many of us the idea of  Bible-reading is automatically slapped with the hashtag #boring or brushed off with the neutral “Whatever, I’m livin. He’s with me'” shrug.  I named this post Between My Highlights, because He made those areas between my USUAL verses our special meeting place.  In a way in my life He’s met me most deeply in between my triumphs and victories, not just amidst celebration.  I wanted my experience to touch on a gaping hole in modern Christianity, which is we don’t actively pursue what’s for us in the Bible.  We want someone to tell us what’s in it, but we often don’t want to look ourselves.  We have one so we say we have one, or sometimes two even, or perhaps just the app for Sundays and connect group days.  The revelation for me was if you don’t read your Bible to know Him, or just reading through the verse then closing it without meditating, I don’t feel it can be quite called praying as a WHOLE, because prayer is supposed to be a conversation, not a one-way street with a shopping list in hand, and sometimes what He has to say won’t fall on your head from your ceiling or appear on a billboard or jeep, it may already be lying in wait within the pages of His Book in addition to that still, small voice.  We commune with Him in prayer and a massive part of communicating with Him is reading His Word, because unlike the still small voice that we sometimes “think” we hear you can return to the verses He reveals to you over and over.

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“Humor aside, I think the reason we sometimes have the false sense that God is so far away is because that is where we have put Him. We have kept Him at a distance, and then when we are in need and call on Him in prayer, we wonder where He is. He is exactly where we left Him.” – RAVI ZACHARIAS

The truth, folks, is just before this year I was a serial non-Bible reader.  Yep, my YouVersion Bible app kept sending me that “would you like to take at least 5 minutes to read…” alert over and over for two years and I’d feel so nagged by it before.  I preferred my real Bible but I wouldn’t really meditate.  I used to pay attention to it just on Sundays but now…recently, I’ve been completing the app plans like wildfire.  I look forward to them. I don’t expect a badge or a trophy or a “good for you” slap on the back, there  just really happened to be a turning point sometime around Feb to March early this year, and I’m just thankful that God changed something in me, I pray for good.  In the past I agreed with that Joshua 1:8 verse above because I knew I ought to, hellooo, I’m a believer I should, but I didn’t do it, meaning it didn’t really reach me deep down.  I would peak in reading and dip quite quickly when life was going well.  I quipped certain verses to encourage friends and write in my journal (so easily because my parents were Navigator affiliated family evangelists from when I was 2).  We can sort of thank the media for all the pop-ups, IG accounts, Tweets, sites and feeds with inspirational quotes and Scripture which we don’t seek out but encounter ‘coz otherwise we starve unconsciously.  “Newsflash” as Judah Smith says, that’s not really knowing God.  You don’t really nurture a friendship with your best friend by hoping you see their status in your feed today.  We reason out “Oh, I saw two verses in my feed today, that’s already seed that’s going to grow in me…” true, yes I agree, but what delights the Lord is when we love Him with all our mind, heart, and soul…and love isn’t passive, love is active, a commitment to love is a priority.  Read more to get the full post and of course I’ll include an embedded video.

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One Year of Happy Skin Makes Us Happy | Online Store Now Worldwide & New Stuff

Whoever thought a NEW Filipina cosmetic brand like Happy Skin could make the world-class waves that they have in just one year?  I never would have guessed that Happy Skin would be able to penetrate the market this relentlessly and in the most positive way.  A year has gone by and we celebrated at Vanilla Cupcake Bakery yesterday, we who have stood by them, offered support, and watched them grow are prouder than ever.  Congratulations, Jacqe Yuengtian-Gutierrez and Rissa Mananquil-Trillo, we continue to stand by you!  Happy Skin’s online store at HappySkinCosmetics.com by the way is now officially operational WORLDWIDE.  Mabuhay ang mga Pinay!

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Here’s a sneak peek at some of their new stuff with full reviews to follow ;)

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Many I’m sure did not have the slightest suspicion early on that a Pinay beauty brand would ever so suddenly and FINALLY give Filipino women what they deserve, a range of better cosmetics manufactured with close supervision that give payoff and safer formulas.  I’m already making the positive comparison between them and Bourjois, the well-loved French drugstore brand, we’ve got our own brand that stands at par and it is Happy Skin!  Congratulations, girls.  Can’t wait to take pictures and show my readers your new items!!

 

My Ellana Minerals Workshop, THE REPEAT! | For Oct.18, Saturday, Makati

So if you weren’t able to catch my last Ellana Minerals Makeup Workshop, HEADS UP!  We are officially having a REPEAT of the Poreless Perfection workshop that I will be teaching this Saturday, October 18th from 1-4PM at Ellana Minerals Headquarters, La Fuerza Compound (side entrance), Pasong Tamo, Makati.  Total workshop fee is Php2500.00 inclusive of reservation fee and Php2000 consumable on Ellana products after the workshop!  Register and reserve here at this link for your slot

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Ever wonder how to get a pore-minimized, flawless complexion that stays with you all day?  Want to know how to do the perfect look for the office and transform that into a smashin’ party evening look?

Let Singapore-trained makeup artist Julia Arenas show you how with Ellana Mineral makeup! This 3-hour workshop includes in-depth, hands-on demonstrations on techniques that you can apply to your everyday routine. The fee is only P2,500 (downpayment for reservation here at this link) and inclusive of reservation fee and a P2,000 gift certificate to Ellana Minerals and snacks during the  event.

To sign up, head on over to this Ellana link here to get your slot.

Hope to see you there, this Saturday!  Email me at probinsiyana@gmail.com if you have any questions.  There’ll be yummy food and drinks, too!  Reserve your workshop slot now at this link! 

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