Haircare

My Bath, Body, & Skincare Picks 2014

For a whole chunk of last year after Dad recovered from his stroke and when I got sick for a bit I sort of went on a beauty hiatus.  Then of course the holidays came and for most of the first 2 weeks of January I’ve been sick again with the flu that half the Philippines has right now  (tell me ’bout it, I called a friend and her officemate in the background was coughing).  It wasn’t a flat out choice that I made, beauty just wasn’t a main priority for a long while ’till just before Thanksgiving.  But we’re back and these were my bathroom and bedroom best from last year.

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So because I wasn’t so hyped up by beauty buzz for quite awhile I was reaching for things for my personal upkeep with less self-consciousness so to speak, but of course I still had my preferences and was happy to find my current signature fragrance in 2014.  The list is pretty pared down compared to like a year ago.  However I think you’ll like that most of them are readily available here in department stores or local groceries.  Click on to get the details.… To full post & COMMENTS...

My Macadamia Hair Treatment & A Giftpack Giveaway ‘Til July 31!

Ola, Ladies! Last June I was able to experience some of the new and lush Macadamia Natural Oil hair products offered in special service treatments via Piandre Salon. I attended the launch at the BGC High Street Branch.  By the way, at the end of this article join the Macadamia Muse Natural Oil giftpack giveaway, open ’til July 31 (mechanics below)!

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I’ve long been wanting to try Macadamia’s hair stuff to say the least but I just never really got around to exploring further into this haircare brand, so I was quite excited when they invited me over for a special day of hair nourishing and pampering, even if I don’t have as much hair to treat lol.

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  • For more information on Macadamia Natural Oil in the Philippines, you can visit our website at macadamiahair.com, or follow us on Instagram (@macadamiaphilippines) and Facebook (/macadamiaph). For more information on Piandre Salon, please visit piandresalon.com. Piandre Salon BGC is in Two Parkade, 30th St. corner 7th Avenue, Bonifacio Global City.

The treatment I decided to go for was the The Damaged No More Treatment was a combination of the Deep Repair and Healing Oil Treatment, a quick fix for hair that’s dry, damaged, and chemically processed since my hair does have hair color. The treatment includes a delightful head and upper back massage. It began with an invigorating cleanse using the Macadamia Natural Oil Rejuvenating Shampoo (Color-safe, Sulfate-free, Paraben-free) and I must admit, I love how it smells.

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After the shampoo, they did not use regular conditioner (in above photo I was given the Moisturizing Rinse to review which is pretty much like one) but towelled my head off and brought me back to my seat to revel in the next step which is the 30min scalp massage for the application of the Macadamia Natural Oil Deep Repair Masque (it isn’t a very wet or oily sort of masque, it’s more like a quick absorbing conditioner that can be massaged in). After the massage they finished off my hair with a quick thin layer of Macadamia Healing Oil, just a few drops. While I had less hair than everyone with my pixie cut my hair and scalp still felt revived by the whole treatment and I was more than glad to have had it. My hair though short had a supple finish and more spring back in the roots following the treatment, my hair didn’t feel color treated and dry, it felt once again like my hair before it was ever color-treated. I’ve no doubt the nourishing properties in Macadamia products have helped boost this effect and I would love to go back to experience the treatment again whenever I have a free moment and find myself nearby a Piandre salon.  Now for the GIVEAWAY MECHANICS!

You guys can also experience the magic of Macadamia Natural Oil as I am giving away two (2) Macadamia gift packs. Just follow the mechanics below:

  • 1. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @blessmybag
  • 2. Comment on this post with your answer to this question: Why is Macadamia Natural Oil perfect for your hair? (Don’t forget to include your full name, email, and Instagram username as well)”
Please note that the gift packs contain 1 travel size Macadamia Rejuvenating Shampoo and 1 travel size Macadamia Moisturizing Rinse Conditioner. Deadline of the contest may be until July 31, 2014. (PLEASE NOTE OPEN TO PHILIPPINE RESIDENTS ONLY.)… To full post & COMMENTS...

Back First With Some L’Oreal Ever Pure Haircare | Need a Moment to Breathe

The absentee beauty blogger is back! I’ve got lots coming up for you it’s just that it’s quite disorienting to be back and I’ve had to do a corporate makeup job the very next day with an early call time. I’m quite stretched to be honest and still reeling from jet lag and the whole trip, but guess what I’ve got a couple of goodies for you guys. I will mention one thing lightly, lots of the cosmetic drugstore stuff in the US can already be found here, not all but a lot, but their drugstores still rock the boat when it comes to haircare. Only one variant of Sulfate Free L’Oreal Ever Pure haircare is available locally (the one for straight hair) but naturally in the States they’ve got all variants. What’s lovely about the moisturizing type I got is it’s like a milder drugstore version of my favorite Pureology hydration range also under L’Oreal. Plus who can refuse being lathered in a Rosemary and Mint scent? It makes me feel like a lush lamb LOL. It lathers well despite being sulfate-free and is safe for colored hair. The shampoo and conditioning system together leaves my hair feeling fresh at the scalp and feeling like that smooth type of healthy. How my hair moves does not apply in this case, haha. Got this at Duane Reade, the 24-hr pharmacy chain by Walgreens available at almost every other block in the city I was at.

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I haven’t forgotten about the giveaway plus I have lots of great features in store for you to make up for this long hiatus. I did have my iPad with me on the trip but the situation was quite tight and packed full to the brim so I hardly had a moment to sit down and think. If you followed me on Instagram you must’ve kept up with me to some degree. Thanks for being understanding. I’ll catch up and make it up to you as soon as I can. Just know that tomorrow I’m flying out to Boracay for a wedding job naman, but will cart my technology along with me to try and keep you posted!… To full post & COMMENTS...

L’Oreal Playball Wax Smoothie Spray | On Its Way Out to Hair Heaven :(

“So long, farewell, auf wiedersehen, goodbye…”   It absolutely pains me to say I found my holy grail styling product for my short pixie hair last November, it is L’Oreal Playball Wax Smoothie (Force 3) but it is soon leaving shelves for good, or so I was told.  I now have one of the 50ml travel size sprays but only because a friend wasn’t using it.  Before this product it was L’Oreal Elnett but the small spray sizes are inaccessible locally (in EU or UK only).  I love my short hair but I still deal daily with a horrible cowlick wave on the left side of my head (it starts at the root so it needs taming) and I was also getting somewhat envious of all these bloggers getting to play with these “lift” or texture sprays.  I needed and wanted a hairstyling product that worked for me, too!  Something to let static and baby hair know who’s boss, haha.  I didn’t manage to get a L’Oreal Wax Smoothie spray of my own at first, someone just let me test theirs at the time when I first tried it.  I was like “Omigosh, where did you get this?”.  I was put out after finding out from a friend and work colleague that this very wonder product (for me, not the rest of you with long hair probably) is being DISCONTINUED.  If you’re style-specific and need an innovative spray that gives the texture appearance and hold of clay or wax but applies as light as hairspray that’s exactly what this is.  A product this specific doesn’t come along every day.  Huhu…

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“L’Oréal Professionnel Play Ball Wax Smoothie Spray is a texturising spray wax that will help you to create unique and constructed styles.  It creates a medium hold and leaves hair smelling of pears.” It also leaves a nice non-greasy looking sheen and I can skip hair oil for shine on the special occasion days when I use this.

Showing sympathy my friend gave me his free sample (and he may have a few more hidden away somewhere I hope) because he never uses it on all the long-haired ladies he does hairstyling for.  With long hair it’s all about vavavoom volume and oomph but for my pixie hair I needed something extremely specific that did the exact opposite of all those lift and texturizing/volumizing sprays.

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It had to be something which kept lift from the roots at an attractive minimum, took care of wayward baby hair, and gave smoothing hold without sacrificing my haircut’s piece-y texture.   This does that all and not only that, it smells attractively of sweet pears.  I strategically spray it just where I need some targeted control.  I still work it through my hair with fingers after spraying but with this my hands don’t get all gummy.

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It isn’t your typical wax in a pot, it’s in an aerosol spray, this isn’t the full size it’s a deluxe 50ml travel size which I love.    This does the job of keeping volume at the roots down but not completely flat (so I don’t look like pomade came down on my head at 300kph), just down to just the right level while keeping the piece-y textured appearance of the haircut.  Regular wax is tolerable but ugh, I hate it on my fingers.  So, I wrote this review to try and feel better but now I think I’m a bit more depressed LOL.  Don’t concern yourselves I’ll manage.  L’Oreal, can you like not kill this…please?

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O Come Oil Ye Faithful… | The Return and Rise of Beauty Oils

The use of oil in the realm of beautifying dates back to ancient times.  The first perfumes and fragrances did not contain alcohol but were pure pressed essential oils and before there were souffle creams you could massage into your skin there were balms and ointments.

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L-R: Moringa O2 Malunggay Therapy Oil, Pai Rosehip BioRegenerate facial oil,Benefit Bathina Body Oil, Delon Coconut Oil Hair Treatment, Aromatherapy Associates Support Breathe Essence,

Oil is the purest concentrated essence that comes from certain natural origin.  Oil products are more highly appreciated in cold, dry countries for their ability to lock in moisture and retain softness in both hair and body.  What I’ve also discovered is the right facial oil also has the ability to calm down irritation and rebalance skin.  These are five of my favorite oils of the moment that each cater in a different way.  Read more to get my quick reviews on these 5 and prices, plus a quick Bible fact about oils and beauty!

To full post & COMMENTS...

The Budget Hair Reboot | Human Nature Clarifying Shampoo + Organix Masque

We all need that turnaround point after hair has withered beneath the surfactants of shampoos and styling products. Wazzat? I heard “Hair is dead…” from somewhere in the back. I never said we needed to treat it with pity, but we sure do need to treat the surface (as we would a cuticle) it if you want to look good. Let’s be honest though…clarifying shampoos and treatments add significantly to cost. “Hair masques” or in our language “deep conditioners” can be expensive, but I’ve just tried a combination that I wouldn’t say is a “miracle tandem” but is quite effective and not too weighty on the wallet either. One of them is a brand new product I was sent.

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Organix Moroccan Argan Creme Sheer Opulence Hair Masque, Human Nature 100% Natural Clarifying Shampoo

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Key Ingredient Sources: Water, Coconut, Aloe, Sugarcane, Sugarbeet, Rice, Anise, NO SLS/SLES, ALS/ALES, PEGs, parabens, synthetic fragrances silicones or harmful chemicals PHP149.75

Who wouldn’t want to try a clarifying shampoo offering by Human Nature? The livelihood boosting brand has made a heartwarming footprint in the beauty industry delivering naturally derived, mild yet effective locally made products to people’s doorsteps. Their products are also available in select groceries like Rustan’s Fresh and in their various Human Nature outlets nationwide. They’ve now brought out a lovely clarifying shampoo free of nasties. I think it still contains some naturally derived sulfates so will have to double check if it is safe for colored hair, though I do almost believe it is because no SLS/SLES or ALS/ALES. I also think given the absence of nasties it would make a great children’s shampoo though it would be good to double check if it stings the eyes, it didn’t enter mine when I was showering, it might be a different case with long hair.

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Available from SM Watsons for Php449.50

This Argan Creme Sheer Opulence Masque by Organix is a good, rich, deep conditioner. The name is undeniably decadent but I think it was a bit of a stretch to call it a hair masque. Although Php450 is far from the price hike of a balmy Kerastase masque I still really wish this was a lot more like a masque (because it’s labeled as one) and a lot less like a conditioner. Human Nature do a nice avocado hair masque which I reviewed before and that really was what I expected it to be. I’m not completely let down with this though…it smells nice, mildly perfumed like sunny holiday with a non-sickly hint of coconut. I expect anything called a masque to be pasty thick, almost like body scrubs or an alternative example being gelato which forms peaks from density. It isn’t as thick like that…it’s got the soufflé texture of a local Cream Silk conditioner. It is a nice, nourishing Argan formula similar to the Delon conditioner I use daily, but a little more rich than that. This together with the Human Nature shampoo have given me a good hair reboot for the long weekend plus they don’t break the bank.… To full post & COMMENTS...

The Personal Care Prepper | A Tale About Backups

I don’t have a shelved and inventoried stockpile of products sitting in a titanium lined bomb shelter, but I do have a number of specific items I can count on one hand (minus the foundation because that makes 6 lol) that I do not like running out of.  They’re not at all last season’s embossed makeup palettes but they do belong in a beauty blog and have more meaningful functions in my life.  Prepping is on everyone’s mind now and relevantly speaking I do go through these like the Shinkansen and nobody’s business.  I’ve placed the nearly empty ones in front in case you can notice the difference at all.  The only thing I wouldn’t say is not nearly empty is my Earl Grey Hurraw vegan lip balm which is approaching halfway and my Shiseido foundation.

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Delon Argan Oil Conditioner (S&R Membership Shopping grocery), Le Couvent Des Minime Gentle Cleansing Milk (currently 30% off at SM Watsons beauty floors…), J&C Super Clean Solutions Makeup Brush spray (contains alcohol), Dr. Woods Liquid Castile Soap w/ Shea Butter (for deep shampooing makeup brushes), Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation, Hurraw Earl Grey Lip Balm

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Stories about acquiring the backups and the reasons behind them are more interesting I think than the backups themselves, they prove their worth (for individual reviews I’ve done click on the product names).  These were “stockpiled” randomly over the last 4 months.

The Delon Argan Oil Conditioner I actually did not stock up on at S&R the first time when I believed stocking up was sort of pretentious and when I ran out it was temporarily GONE from S&R for months and I blamed myself daily, it’s the only conditioner that actually makes me feel that it really contains Argan Oil plus it emulsifies a little bit and rinses leaving that healthy glow or sheen my dull hair craves for.  Then mom spotted the conditioner again at S&R a few grocery stops ago and she got me four bottles plus one for herself.

The Le Couvent Des Minime Gentle Cleansing Milk I’ve just really run out of words for, it’s such a comforting soothing cleanser with rose botanicals that doesn’t foam, doesn’t have mineral oil, but still removes makeup while it cleanses (except waterproof mascara).  I have this bad feeling that people aren’t noticing this L’Occitane sister brand as much as they should in the SM watsons beauty halls, please help them do well so that this brand stays here LOL!!  I don’t want them pulling out any time soon, don’t give me more reasons to stock up, lol.

As I mentioned in my last post for the J&C Super Clean Solutions Makeup Brush Spray I found the perfect opportunity to stock up when I ran out.  I checked with the team that works it out last July 28, apparently they were going to have a price increase come August so I decided to get two bottles while it was still Php395, it now retails for Php595.  It takes about 4-5months for me to get through one.  If you’re looking for an alcohol-free brush cleansing spray a reader of mine named Soleil just mentioned the Ellana Brush Cleanser…which I’m also keen to try.

The Dr. Woods liquid Castile soap  from HEALTHY OPTIONS is pretty much an all-around sort of product safe to use for people and general cleaning but I buy it primarily to shampoo my makeup brushes.  Two overflowing caps to a cup of water is the ratio that works for me then just repeat the amount if you need more of the solution.  Dip, swirl, and lather up your brushes with it on your hand, repeating till the lather is white then rinse thoroughly. It’s a good and sufficient Dr. Bronner’s dupe and is safe to use on yourself as well as your brushes.  My favorite variant for brushes is the peppermint one but I love that they have an unscented BABY version for people with sensitive skin who need their brushes to be completely free of any possible irritants.  The tea tree variant I’ve not opened yet but have on hand should be good for keeping germs and bacteria at a minimum.  I do recommend you use this and NOT Joy Antibac detergent as I previously recommended (Joy didn’t break me out but broke someone else out) to ensure skin safety.

On the Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation there is no need to say much because I’ve already reviewed it.  It’s a favorite and the one I reach for the most currently.  The backup story of this has sort of a twist because I really got one more in a shade darker because I accidentally tanned (waking up late by a bedroom window where the sun rises).  I then realized I was slowly running out of the first lighter shade I had, right now I’ve been mixing the two as I slowly lose my tan.

And last but not the least, my soooo affordably luxurious Hurraw Earl Grey Lip Balm  available from Cutieverse.com or email rebecca@cutieverse.com for more information (if I’m not mistaken these are already retailing at Beyond Yoga BGC fort).  Since I was contacted to review the products originally I shamelessly asked if I could have a backup of Earl Grey and Cutieverse were glad to supply my Earl Grey fix.  I keep reaching for it and when I can’t find it in my bag I feel a little incomplete without it.  The Hurraw Earl Grey scent and flavor is just so comforting and there are not enough words to describe how perfect the texture is for a cold-pressed vegan lip balm.  It tops any other pocketable balms I’ve tried so far.

That pretty much sums up the stuff I have backups for.  One thing you can never have a backup for though is the people you love, you need to be with them while they exist and spread the truth about love with others.  More than anything I think that’s what really matters should we begin talking about expiration dates and human existence, because time running out is real.… To full post & COMMENTS...

My UK Spring Beauty Giveaway! | Nationwide ‘Til May 31, 2013

What rocks this nationwide (Philippines only) UK beauty giveaway is it is a leap forward into spring (globally niweiz), it will blind you with coral pink, and frankly these bits of beauty aren’t readily available in retail here. I still haven’t made up my mind on whether I should sneak in past all of you and join in myself under an alias LOL (I kid alright).

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LOVELY LOOT:

  • Soap & Glory Pulp Friction Body Scrub 250ml £8.00
  • L’Oreal Elnett Hairspray (Extra Strength) travel size 75ml £2.39
  • Jo Malone Travel Candle(Lime Basil & Mandarin) 60g £22.00
  • Rimmel London Apocalips Lip Lacquer (Stellar) 5.5ml £5.99
  • Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer, (Medium3 /MAC NC30) £4.19
  • Maybelline SuperStay 14-hr Lipstick (Stay With Me Coral)
  • L’Oreal False Lash Telescopic Mascara WP (Black) £10.99
  • Givenchy Bloom Compact Mirror, w/ red velvet sleeve (gift w/ purchase)

All this stuff is seriously soooo hard to give away. To join simply follow the instructions given by the Rafflecopter widget at the end of this post, there are 3 required actions and 1 bonus action for more entry points. In the meantime click Read More to jump to close-up photos of the prizes and what I know about the praises sung of them. The trivia about a couple of these is quite compelling. The Rafflecopter mechanics follow immediately after.… To full post & COMMENTS...

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