Cray Cray for Cases | RTW Phone Swag by HeadCase UK

I was kinda “down” and semi “out” for the last two days.  I had a sore throat and slight fever on Christmas day and symptoms ballooned the following morning.  Thanks to rest, lots of juice, a massage, and some paracetamol it didn’t get any worse and I’m better now.  I did a bit of browsing on Ebay over two weeks ago and decided to give in to the holiday offers phone case makers HeadCase had via their online store E-cell Global (“e_cell” on Ebay).  Regular price is about $8 per case, but with their holiday discount and FREE shipping offer I paid quite a bit less, nearly half price for all in fact.  To be clear, Head Case phone cases are designed in the UK and outsourced to be printed here in the Philippines.  What I like is I didn’t receive standard postal notices for these anymore even though they were FREE shipping.  They delivered my orders all together directly to mom’s office in Fort.  I initially chose four then added the Ariel surfing princess a couple of days later.

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HeadCase, From LEFT, S3 i9300 Cases: CARINA NEBULA, CAT GEOMETRIC, SURFING PRINCESS HIPSTER, PINK FASHION FLAMINGO

Can you tell by my SURFING PRINCESS case that I’ve stocked up on phone swag for summer?  Ariel splits her tail just to surf?  Yes, please!  The printing quality is moderate to high quality and the design doesn’t wrap around the whole case completely, the print stops short of about a third of an inch from the clear case edge.  The clear case that the design is on is obviously what makes it cheaper.  My ultimate favorite is this one they call “TIGER GEOMETRIC” but what’s strange is the face doesn’t look like a tiger.  I think they’re mistaken, it looks more like a lion or lioness, I can tell from the chin and the eyes and all I could think of when I saw this was “Aslan” not “Shere Khan”.  Generally, tigers have slightly larger, rounder  eyes than lions, slimmer snouts, and their eyes are closer together, not as far apart as lions’ eyes.  So to me, this is a lion.  No one disagreed on Instagram, LOL.  I also love that it blazes with multi-facets of the color of the new year and brings back childhood memories of Lisa Frank stickers and stationery.

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I do know I won’t find fantastic graphic designs I can browse through locally as I was able to so easily do on their Ebay store.   What I like is it’s not a printed, peel-off sticker they just slapped on a clear case, they’ve obviously got a special printer that makes veneer designs that adhere and mold to plastic.  On my current case, the “Tiger” Geometric, it even looks like the darker facets in the graphics are beveled or embossed, you can see and feel it, so nice.

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These are great but don’t naman expect Casetagram quality (which costs over $33 USD).  When I say print quality is moderate (for $5-$6 I paid each) that’s because I still can see printer striping if you look closely at the medium tones (look at the flamingo case where it’s most obvious, that was the dud of the 5).  I don’t mind too much about this for the price (about under Php200 each), I’m just really happy that my favorite designs, the cat, the lion, and the mermaid were printed well.  HC_03

I skimmed through hundreds of designs within my phone category, nearly a thousand Samsung S3 cases on the “e_cell” Ebay site before picking these 5 (they do same designs for other smartphone models including iphones).  By the way, if you’ve got the same phone as me make sure you’re looking at the Samsung S3 i9300 cases, NOT S3 MINI cases, easy to be mistaken.  Have fun browsing :).… To full post & COMMENTS...

Maybelline’s Luscious Looking Lip Polish! | AKA “Color Elixir” Abroad

I’m sooo glad I went with my gut and did NOT cave on an Ebay purchase for a few of these.  I remember praying and truly not having enough extra to get these so I went with wisdom and let it go.  Thank you, thank you to the Maybelline team for gifting me with not one, not two, but eight if not ALL of your lovely newly available Lip Polish lippies!  They’re known abroad as “Maybelline Color Elixirs” and ever since London-based Canadian Youtube-r  “Essiebutton” (Estee) raved about these I’ve been hankering to have me one or two, and now without lifting a finger, I do…and so many more than I imagined!

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Why You’ll Love It

  • A trio of concentrates delivers the color of a lipstick, the cushiony care of a balm, and the glass shine of a gloss
  • Our exclusive smoothing angora brush delivers a polished , even application and smoothing sensation to lips

I love how elegantly lined up they are in a box suited to their size, they kind of remind me of how the Aromatherapy Associates Bath Oils are packed.  What the lip polishes are basically are non-sticky lipglosses, they give a pigmented sort of jelly shine without the annoying stickiness and fade nicely to a noticeable stain after a few hours (3-4), plus they’re easy to bring and a snap to reapply, need I mention they won’t cost you an arm and a leg at about Php450/475?  I set my eyes on this wearable lavender-ish color GLAM5 which…obviously, I’m being very typical at this very moment, best represents next year’s color of the year, Radiant Orchid.

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Actually I’ve been onto these purple-y shades even before the color of the year was announced.  These tenderly tint the lips and in fact when you swatch them on your hand or arm (sorry don’t have a swatch photo) they sort of look like watercolors on the first swipe but with a pop of color.  Color intensity is build-able, which is just uniquely awesome for a gloss.  Tip though, for any lippie like this exfoliate lips and hydrate lips beforehand, dry flaky lips don’t ever help when applying products like these.  The lighter shades are lovely to wear for a soft everyday look and the deeper ones are gorgeous, too.  Here I’m wearing GLAM 5 and I do love me a good gloss that adds OBVIOUS color and lasts not at the expense of sealing your lips together.  I hate lipgloss that looks lovely in the tube but amount to “zero” when you slick it on.  These aren’t like that and they don’t have an odd taste or smell.  I especially recommend these if you want your lips to catch the light in joyful group photos this holiday season.  :)  Available almost everywhere Maybelline is sold in local department stores, Mercury Drug, or Watsons outlets.  Are you done with shopping and wrapping? I’m still wrapping a few more but am excited for our first Christmas family gathering tonight, Dad’s side!  An early Merry Christmas to all of you, mwah! xxx… To full post & COMMENTS...

Early Christmas Gift from Lisa Eldridge | Being chosen is the best gift of all…

I woke up with my eyes still stuck together.  They burst open when I peeked at celebrity makeup artist Lisa Eldridge’s post on her website announcing her My Lisa Look contest winners and saw my face, my actual face, posted on there!!  I won 3rd place in her My Lisa Look global IG contest (here at this link)! And she even described what she thought of my look and why she chose it! *Thud*

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“Third place goes to Julia, who was inspired by my ‘Baby Bardot Fresh Spring Makeup‘  The finished look is just so fresh and suits her face and personality so well – of course I dont actually know her but I can sort of feel her personality through the sparkle in her eyes in the picture … if you know what I mean. Well done Julia, I love your make-up!” – LISA ELDRIDGE

mylisalook_01One girl from her team just emailed me a few minutes ago asking for my details so they could send out my prize by New Year.  I brightened the photo up for you guys, it won without me doing so but I wanted it brighter for the blog.  I really, really don’t care as much about the prize as much as the fact that Lisa actually looked at my artistry and approved and thought she saw “sparkle” in me.  Lisa looked at me and she actually liked what she saw.  That made me sparkle more today :D.  It’s like the best God-given early Christmas gift.  I can’t imagine asking for more this year.

 

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ZOYA Dakota, the Rouge Noir Contender | Those Essential Black Cherry Nails

Zoya is probably my ultimate favorite nail brand up there along with Essie.  It’s a brand birthed by a former classical pianist turned cosmetologist and her husband who was an advanced chemist.  With Zoya they’ve released, to date, the longest wearing TOXIN-FREE nail polish formula in the market.  What I love about the Zoya formulas is, similarly to Essie, they dry over the nails but still have that ultra shiny, wet, glossed over look.  With Zoya polishes I like skipping top coat when I can…they look newly applied for days before major tip wear becomes noticeable.  I’d like to take a moment to revoke what I said a few posts back about not really being into dark ruby/black cherry nails…that was only because I hadn’t tried the nail polish Mom brought home for me from Japan (Zoya is a U.S. brand), they had Zoya over there and she got me Zoya Dakota, which is a beautiful black cherry or bloody sort ofhue.  It’s a beautiful crimson with 2 coats on, and a worthy Chanel Rouge Noir contender with 3 coat like the way I have it on below.  The point about “rouge noir” shades is that meters away your nails appear like they could be black, but up close people see that your nails are as deeply red as precious rubies.

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A close local dupe for this might be Caronia’s Pussy Red (cringes at the name) but what I hate about that is it feels like it has a brown undertone that makes my hands age, it doesn’t have the lovely ruby undertone that Zoya Dakota has.  When I’m going to go for dark nails I like having my nails shorter, just because it looks younger, fresher, and more rock-chick sort of sophisticated if you know what I mean.  Zoya Dakota’s ruby red sort of rouge noir hue really reminds me of the ruby key (yes, key, not shoes) of the evil princess in Return to Oz (1988).  If you were a strange child in the 80s as I was you may have watched that.  I loved it to bits and memorized it.  It was a general film flop because parents then thought it was too “film noir” or strange for Disney children to enjoy and Fairuza Balk as Dorothy might have looked too “crafty” to them.  My mother had many recorded and let me watch lots of movies (as long as not occult) about unusually talented, brave, strange girls (Alice, Dorothy…) who were out in dark places trying to find their way home all the time (she had a scheme obviously for the future LOL) and she wouldn’t shield me from potentially scary scenes like when the heroine is in a dark place for example, she’d let me wield my imaginary sword.  Er…back to Zoya Dakota, this is good “rouge noir” candidate that lasts longer on the nails and looks glossy for a long time. W-I-N.… To full post & COMMENTS...

My Nationwide Christmas Giveaway 2013 | Until Dec. 26, 2013

It’s gift giving time!  First, I’d like to thank the many brands that have supported my blog this year (there are lots of new ones) and also the brands that have been there since the beginning.  This has certainly been the blog’s biggest year ever now that I’ve collaborated with brands that I would never have imagined working with a few years back.  I’ve been given huge opportunities and have been blessed with so much!  It’s definitely that time of the year to give back with gusto!

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However my biggest thank you goes out to all of you who’ve been reading this blog, I’ve even just discovered that there are some of you who’ve been reading this blog since 2010?!  That’s like totally cray (lol, ‘di bagay).   Well this one’s for you and to join you simply have to follow the steps via the Rafflecopter widget at the end of the post.  Please understand that I’ll do my best to send out the whole package before New Year, but if that doesn’t work the winner will receive the prize in January 2014.  However, before that, let’s go through the loot first, shall we?  Read more to see the individual prizes up close.… To full post & COMMENTS...

My Christmas Wishlist 2013 | 5 Beauty & 5 Almost Non-beauty

Today, I wanted to do a post where I didn’t have to think too much, but this will still be somewhat lengthy because Hello, it’s a list and not of press stuff I received or purchases either.  This is pretty much the “One can dream…” point and pick party of items that appeal to me and am happy to recommend them for people with similar taste.  We’ve  trimmed down on the extravagance and labor that goes into Christmas parties this year or cut out our company Christmas parties altogether in respect of Storm Haiyan’s victims.  Most of us are aware and we’ve gladly done our share to help. That also means more people can focus more on gift giving.  Whenever I make this wishlist annually please know that I don’t shamelessly email it to family and friends okay?!  These are mostly available locally (don’t be mad if I throw in a few aspirational gifts) and I’ll do the fair mix of high and low for you.  Mmm, I’ll make this a list of 5 beauty and 5 nearly non-beauty buys for the sake of variety…I’ll even throw in one or two things you can eat. Let us begin.  For fun, I’ll alternate the beauty and non-beauty bits.  This post is going to turn into fruitcake.med-img-2._freedom_system_eye_shadow_square

1.) INGLOT Single Eyeshadow- I’ve got the palettes you place them in, so surprise me with any single eyeshadow shade from a huge array of colors to choose from at their store.  They come dinky and boxed…the size of candy.  (Php375 from the INGLOT boutique at Glorietta 5)

 

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2.) Canon EOS 700D Entry level DSLR – From tiny gift to big gift we go, the reason why I’ve got my eyes set on this is I’ve never owned a DSLR ever and this is a lower level camera than the 60D, also costs less than that 100D one AND it’s a newer release than the 600D.  The 600D was the entry level DSLR of 2-3 years ago, this is the next step up.  I like that unlike the 650D it has a varicam angle flip screen which is a blogger’s blessing if you want to check what the scene looks like while shooting yourself. I’m also very much in need of a DSLR for decent true to life before and after photos of my makeup clients.

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3.) Bloom Eye Brow Duo (Brow Gel & Pencil) – Now, I’m not sure if Beauty Bar stocks all of Bloom’s latest products (or if they still stock Bloom at all, shame on me, I’ll confirm), but this is what’s on the Bloom website.  My cousin’s wife, Sam, loves their automatic brow pencils and while I’m not sure that this is the same one, this is what got me interested from the site, one end is a brow gel, the other is a brow definer.  Just know that Sam and I know brows and according to her Bloom’s brow stuff is better than good.  READ MORE to see all 10 on my wishlist…click “more”.

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MakeUp That Matters Differently | MIMI Foundation’s “If Only For a Second” Video

I always liked to believe that makeup, despite the notion of petty shallowness that surrounds it, is a tool for ministry.  Makeup can be brought forward in many more meaningful ways.  It is a medium that weaves all sorts of good magic in its own way.  Watch the video by the MIMI Foundation in a project entitled “If Only For a Second” here via this link  or  watch it embedded below.  The MIMI Foundation is a French cancer and well-being group.  Twenty cancer patients with eyes with their eyes closed make their way into one studio only to reap a moment that will strongly impact their lives.  Thank you, Mom, for sharing.

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“Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.” – KEVYN AUCOIN, America’s legendary MUA, 1962-2002

 

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Max Factor Glossfinity Polish in “Noisette”

I wore this shade on my left hand the other day to test it out at home, and I woke up really attracted to it. This Max Factor shade in Noisette is more appealing to me than something like the ox blood rouge noir this season. I received it in my December BDJ box :).

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It’s best described as a super sophisticated petrol eggplant shade. I spotted Guardian beauty editor Sali Hughes wearing a similar shade in her recent “New Finds 2013″ video, but the shade she was wearing had a slightly stronger berry undertone. Gosh, I can’t help but listen to that woman no matter how long (usually 15/20 mins) her videos are, she’s too convincing for words. “Noisette” is a hint deeper in real life than in these mobile photos, from afar people could mistake it for black but it obviously isn’t. Sorry, things got a bit busy ’round here. Lots of stuff upcoming and will be preparing an awesome Christmas giveaway that I will send out to the winner by January to avoid loss in transit. “Noisette” would be sold in SM Watsons beauty floors and wherever Max Factor counters are present…if this comes in a full size it should cost around Php249.00, I’m not sure if the size I have, which is a mini one, is available as well.… To full post & COMMENTS...

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