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Nails in November | Cutting it Close…

It really is cutting it close isn’t it?  It won’t be November anymore tomorrow so I’ve highly decided to take advantage of the fact that it is still November today and I can very well make use of the title.  By the way, cutting it close just doesn’t have to do with the date.  There’s just an uplifting sense I get when I get my nails trimmed and hands exfoliated for an overall clean.  I had to form the regular “mani” habit by myself because as a freelancer in-salon manicures just really add to monthly expenses and also because as a makeup artist my hands always have to look pristine and worthy of handling other people’s faces, not to mention my own.



Cure Natural Aqua Gel, HURRAW Lemon Lip Balm (Cold-pressed, vegan), CLINIQUE A Different Nail Enamel in “Do Not Disturb”, Trim Mani Kit (Dad got from S&R) Apostrophe Nail Cutter, Trim Nail File (forgot to include my body lotion here, LUSH Celebrate)

I’ve quite outgrown (pun intended) the need for long nails and while my nails will never be kindergarten short I’ve recently been always keeping the length close to the nail bed, not too far out.  My nail growth sadly is in an awkward upward angle, not a lovely forward and downward sort of growth…one lovely example of which is YouTube Jen/frmheadtotoe’s fingertips, she can grow them long and they won’t splay and snag.  So anyway I cope with what I have and learn to enjoy them.  Recently I’ve updated my manicure steps with 2 FACIAL products that do the job with flying colors and just really aid in keeping my fingertips polish-worthy in a more gentle way.  Read more to get the full feature on how I clean my nails, what 2 new current products I use and how I use them.  Click more to make the jump.

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My Benefit Holiday 2013 Workshop!| FREE On Dec.5, Shangrila Mall Edsa

Come one, come all to my Benefit Cosmetics Holiday 2013 Workshop at Shangrila Mall, Edsa on December 5, Thursday!  We’ll be accepting 2 batches of you eager beauty beavers from 1-2pm and 3-4pm based on reservations via Benefit’s FB page (message).  I’ll be doing DAY to NIGHT looks using Benefit Cosmetics’ current holiday sets and other awesome products.  This workshop does not require a purchase :) you just need to reserve a slot for this workshop via messaging Benefit Cosmetics Philippines’ FB page here (beside the LIKE button there’s a MESSAGE button).  Send them an FB message requesting to reserve for my workshop (indicate whether 1 pm or 3pm) and provide your complete contact details :) It’s FREE!  Tis’ after all the season to be jolly, and of course, to look good while being jolly!  Remember this is a FREE workshop you just have to reserve because there are limited slots!  You can also reserve thru me if you like and I will forward to them.  Reserve your slot now here via Benefit Cosmetics’ PH Facebook page.


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INGLOT Cosmetics Now at Glorietta 5 | Featuring Their Freedom System!

It’s no surprise that everyone’s been blasting this white hot topic, yes, INGLOT cosmetics is now in Manila!  First, I’d like to thank the INGLOT team for the trust and my fellow beauty blogger Martha Sta. Barbara aka The Beauty Junkee who is now also INGLOT’s Brand PR Consultant(you go, Girl!).  Thanks for the opportunity to feature these wonderful products!  INGLOT is a premium Polish cosmetic brand that exploded in popularity globally thanks to their professional formulas, mid-range pricing, their customizable palette system and hundreds of smooth colors  to choose from.  Their first flagship store launched in Glorietta 5, Makati yesterday.  I’ll get this out quickly, the first thing that I wasn’t quite aware of about INGLOT cosmetics was how affordable the individual pans of product are, and actually even the empty palettes (considering the quality) super good value.  That’s the first thing I wanted to mention because when you walk by an INGLOT store you get the impression that most of the products in there must be pretty expensive, well guess what, not all things are as they seem, however the system palettes themselves that hold the pans are the ones that are a bit pricier here than in the US (there system palettes are under Php1000, over here between Php1200-1400).  I’ll tell you right now, the pan products themselves though are still more affordable than I first perceived, perhaps this Christmas it would be best to put a system palette that you can fill up on your wishlist.


To properly showcase how we bloggers felt when we arrived at the INGLOT boutique and were requested to choose what we liked check out this photo of Project Vanity’s Liz Lanuzo and My Lucid Intervals’ lovely Donnarence, LOL.  In that moment I could completely and totally relate, where do we begin????  That and with Martha’s announcement that there was an Instagram contest with major freebies attached half of us nearly lost all orientation on what to do first LOL…I did my best not to :).


Currently eyeshadow pans are rolling out for a maximum price of Php375 each, (not bad given the quality and size) and blush pans for about Php700 each.  By the way, 95% of the products are manufactured in INGLOT’s very own factory in Poland (where you’re strictly required to cap your hair and suit up if you want to visit).  So no need to presume that they’re affordable because they’re manufactured somewhere else, they’re not, they’re nearly all homegrown.    I brought home a sizeable chunk of loot yesterday and am still pretty chuffed with the fact that I won the Instagram contest during the launch :) but before that let’s talk about the palette they initially gave us, the Freedom EB (5s) palette.


These were the shades I chose prior to winning the larger 10 slot palette.  I didn’t go for “wearable neutrals” simply because I have so many neutral shades already.  To tame my excitement and get organized in selecting at the launch I went for a theme after writing down a short list of shades.  I decided to go for Peacock/bird of paradise colors, so this originally had gold instead of 450 a cranberry red, but hey, since it’s Christmas…I decided to go flip one for the season. By the way the palettes don’t come with numbers on them, I just numbered them with photo editing in case you were curious to know what shades I picked and also see the following combinations of palettes I made from my winnings.

Apart from taking home my complimentary smaller Freedom EB palette as a blogger for which I chose 3 eyeshadow shades and 1 blush  I also brought home my contest prize which was the 10-slot Freedom palette and it was pre-filled as a bonus!  Read more to check out all the different ways I shuffled up the shades and made different palette combinations, you’ll be able to sort of tell I ended up being like a kid with 2 new “Lego” sets.  If you want to have even more fun you can play the “I’ve got my own brand” game and give your palettes cool names, just like I did after the jump.   Click “more” to continue reading and check out the combinations I put together.

Continue reading INGLOT Cosmetics Now at Glorietta 5 | Featuring Their Freedom System!


BYS Matte Liquid Foundation | A Decent Drugstore Matte Foundation, Amen

Again, late on the bandwagon but it’s always good for great things to resurface.  This is THE sort of matte drugstore foundation I have been hoping to find for years.  I heard about the BYS Matte Liquid  foundation from my good friend Ashley Campbell, she’s half African-American and Filipina and is one of the talented singers of the AKAJAM group.  I’ve been helping do their makeup for the past few weeks for a concert series called Tuesdays With Gary at Teatrino, Greenhills.  Ashley is herself a bit of a beauty expert (the way she does her own  makeup is gorgeous, too follow her @mysweetrelease_ashley on IG) and  she  has oily combination skin and one of her flat out recommendations from the drugstore was this, as she said “Matte kung matte…ito lang talaga nakita ko na okay yung kulay and yung texture matte talaga…” .  Ashley’s color is similar to Beyonce/Rihanna which is more between medium tan and deep coloring, deep but not too deep, and the deepest shade which is the 4th I believe in Medium Beige suits her.  Before our last concert session I managed to purchase my shade in BYS Matte which is Sand Beige, it’s about Php650+.  BYS is an Australian drugstore brand that was launched here last year.


This foundation is water and glycerin based making it to date the most comfortable and hydrating matte foundation I’ve ever worn.  It’s hard to explain you have to try it for yourself.  It’s not silicon and paraben-free (hello, it’s a drugstore find, parabens are preservatives) but hmmm, ingredients do indicate it’s oil-free, GREAT!  And so it’s mineral-oil free to be precise.  Believe me I super hunted this baby down since I swatched the tester at SM Aura, the texture is dense yet light, not at all a runny liquid (see my friend Shen’s swatch here…).

BYS Matte foundation coverage is Medium to Full coverage and buildable.  I like that it’s a matte foundation that is comfortable to wear and doesn’t look completely flat on the face.

What proves it’s a truly matte finish is if you use powder blushes over the top once the foundation has set, even without powder the colors don’t stick or get splotchy because the surface is matte.  I still recommend setting this with a translucent setting powder though. Read more to see this foundation applied on me and a finished look I did on singer, Julianne Tarroja.

Continue reading BYS Matte Liquid Foundation | A Decent Drugstore Matte Foundation, Amen


Alice Blue “Palawan Mystique” Candle | If Marc Jacobs’ Daisy had a candle…

I’ve begun to realize I’m a bit of a scent whiz or have developed a nose.  I don’t mean that I’ve memorized the identities of tons of fragrance notes or anything like that but when it comes to matching up fragrances or identifying that something smells a WHOLE LOT like something else, I’m your gal.  Not sure how long this “skill” is going to hang around but I’m positively sure I’ve still got it coz I just discovered something wonderful.  I’ve sniffed and found out that locally crafted Filipino soy candle brand Alice Blue (around since 2005, I was on Venus or perhaps Pluto…) have a candle that smells way too much like the Marc Jacobs’ Daisy fragrance, 2011’s summer sellout version Eau So Fresh to be exact.  I proudly got it, it’s called “Palawan Mystique”.



Palawan Mystique Deluxe Candle| Php529.00 for 5 oz. hand-poured soy candle, candle holder Php199 | Proudly Philippine-Made
Scents of the Underground River and ‘Last Frontier’ island. Fresh marine accord and rainforest with bergamot, orris, musk, boise de rose and amber. 

Can I just say this, this is the most quickly fragrant candle I have at the moment, the others I own get fragrant as well (I still love the complexity and build of imported scents) but it takes a good 15-20 minutes before they do fill the room completely with fragrance.  I’m not sure if it’s because it’s a soy candle base but this candle makes the room smell good faster, the catch from what I’ve observed is it burns down slightly faster too, but just slightly. Read more to get the full review, pricing, and tips on usage.

Continue reading Alice Blue “Palawan Mystique” Candle | If Marc Jacobs’ Daisy had a candle…

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It Makes You Think | “Plastic Bodies” Art Series, Sheila Pree Bright

 Do we venture too far from ourselves from time to time?  Maybe we do, maybe we don’t.  I’m not trying to judge people who have makeup on all the time, this is just visually something quite mind stirring and it is something to think about.  Plastic Bodies is a photo composite series by photographer Sheila Pree Bright.  I have similar feelings when I’m reviewing just one makeup product.  I often don’t put on a full face if I’m only featuring that one item ( as seen in today’s earlier post) simply because, I don’t always have to have a fully made up face.  Makeup is fun of course and it’s great for consistent presentation but I like having fun without it sometimes as well :) it doesn’t have to define me.

View more details on the full series slideshow HERE via Huffington Post… To full post & COMMENTS...

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