The Beautiful Ones | RIP 12.14.2012

In the wake of the awful tragedy that besieged Newtown, Connecticut at Sandy Hook elementary blogging about products has not been top of mind this last weekend.  Everything else seems so trivial after these 20 children and 6 of their school teachers and administrators just recently passed away.  I mourn with you, America, and no matter what terrible things the world has to say to you at this time and even if many of these things are true EVERY country has SOMETHING wrong with it.  This happened to you now, and I’m in no position to say why…but I can cry with you and pray for you.



ADULTS who were killed: Victoria Soto – 27, Rachel Davino – 29, Lauren Rousseau – 30, Dawn Hochsprung – 47, Anne Marie Murphy – 52,  Mary Sherlach – 56

I don’t have photos of the adults right now but all I can say is…they are superheroes in my eyes.  One of the teachers who passed away was my age, Victoria Soto.  Lord, please calm my confusion and speak to me…and speak to their loved ones.  Send people to help the families of all these wonderful children and teachers move through their pain.… To full post & COMMENTS...

Out & About | Puno-Calaguas Nuptials 12.15.2012

As a professional makeup artist I’m blessed to be able to work through the colorful spectrum of jobs available.  In between the bread and butter of advertising I try and fit in bridal makeup whenever I can. 

Gown by: Niño Dominic Angeles

Every time I nab a nuptial I learn or spot something new that inspires me and I’m glad Cookie & Charles had me on board for their big day.


Maid of Honor, Meryl and Bride, Cookie

Makeup by: Julia Arenas



I think about what many couples ought to bring home in planning for their big day. What Cookie & Charles did well is shedding off distractions that need not be part of the main event. These two kept it simple and while they had a small handful of chaotic moments they still focused on each other MORE (sorry no photo of the groom). This path of simplicity by no means diminishes the meaningful union, in fact I believe it strengthens it by nipping stress at the bud. Not that there are weddings without any form of stress, I just strongly believe it’s more ideal to keep unhealthy adrenalin at bay so you can have ultimate macro focus on what really matters, each other. In other words, less CAN be (not always is) more. I have the same approach when it comes to wedding makeup. While I am given the power to intensify the bride’s look to the nines and slap heavier layers on if it please me… I choose not to unless I’m asked to or given an exact photo peg I’m requested not to stray from. I try to make it just intense enough so that the camera picks up an obvious enhancement. I choose to work finely rather than heavily unless the bride’s preference requires me to. Thankfully in weddings this restrained but more intimate interpretation of bridal beauty has served me and my clients well so far. My main aim is to always make the bride refreshingly radiate rather than “transform” into someone they’re not. This mobile photo is certainly overexposed, light was way too harsh, (the makeup is much more defined and intense otherwise) but I quite like how happy Cookie looks here.

Hair: Tricia Hermosura

I have the groom in mind half the time as I do the bride’s makeup. I think of them cheek to cheek, forehead to forehead and all that cheese. There are small things I consider carefully that help this along. Like when I think thrice before using full strip eyelashes, instead I work with small demi segments or lash clusters, adding between the lashes where needed. Full strip lashes (the wrong ones anyway) can spell out F-A-L-S-E before you can say “lash”. They produce cosplay eyes that might fan the pastor out the window or bat your groom through the ground with a single blink. I’m highly imaginative so I think of a dozen possible perspectives on the bride’s makeup that help shape my interpretation of what would enhance her best. What’s most important to me is that the day’s leading lady looks like the best version of herself ever…pressingly familiar yet captivating. For bridal handiwork I’d much rather people see a very beautiful lady first before noticing the makeup. If you’d like to recommend me as a makeup artist for a friend or relative’s special day check out my work folio at or email me at julia.arenas@gmail.comTo full post & COMMENTS...

The LUSH Times 2012 Catalog + LUSH King of Skin in a Tin

This LUSH Times catalog, which by the way you need to get at your LUSH store NOW (did I mention that it’s free), is the most awesomely edited cosmetics catalog slash price list I’ve come across.  It’s already the third day since I came home with it and I’m still opening it up to browse through it.  The LUSH Times is just bursting with what I need and want to know about all the LUSH products they have on hand and it’s all “embroidered” together with great written copy, lovely photos, and proper layout.  If you’re a beauty blogger you most certainly need this in your life.  I’m so glad the saleslady stabbed my shopping bag with it at the last minute…she nearly forgot they had some issues when I was walking out, I just happened to ask about the price of one more item.  I also love that it’s not glossy and is made of recycled paper.

Camera 360

Camera 360

I also left the store with my own tin of King of Skin Php475 which is basically a solid lotion/body butter bar which melts into your skin full of good things like avocado, almond, virgin coconut oil, and what else… *nosedive into LUSH times*…Rose, Frankincense, Bananas, Jojoba, and Oats, too…what’s not to love skinwise, right.  I just stuck mine in the ref because it’s a bit melty and the ants were trying to get at it even with the tin (ants know the good stuff from the bad)!  Read more to see what I love about the LUSH times (more photos of its insides) and my compressed thoughts on LUSH King of skin.… To full post & COMMENTS...

Random Rave – Topshop Cute-As-A-Button Pink Tape Measure

I’m actually not sure if I should be sharing slash promoting this…so let’s say for now I’m just raving, but I found this Topshop tape measure and got it off Ebay and it was so, so cute and could not resist placing an order for it…then I found out, oops, it happened to be a freebie with online global purchases.

It cost me about £8.50 in total with shipping from Ebay, so that’s about Php500.  It’s actually the current free gift with ANY ORDER from the global website so I’m not quite exactly sure if they’re giving these out with purchases also at Topshop boutiques locally…I’d say most probably not, but it’s better to be sure so you can check your local boutique first.  Anyway some enterprising, international Topshop shoppers obviously thought they didn’t need the ones they got with their purchases so that’s how some ended up on Ebay and they lured in happy suckers like me…I’m not regretting the purchase because I really don’t plan to get Topshop clothes online and so this was practically the only way I could own one for myself.  So just be aware that if you plan to do some online Topshop shopping… there is no need to pay just to get one of these off the net elsewhere, you’ll certainly get one with your online purchase.  I’ve no time right now to put up my wishlists but the photos are certainly piling up and both the Beauty and Non-Beauty Wishlist editions will be up soon.  I’ve got to do groceries and Christmas shopping for now hence the quick random post.  Cheerio dahlingz…

 … To full post & COMMENTS...

Sweet Surrender is a “Piece of Cake” – Ruby Escosa’s Homemade Cupcakes

This was unexpected.  You see the thing about cupcakes in my book is I give them a 360 degree Matrix rotation stare before I bite and mentally recite that I hope…and I really mean hope that they’re not just sweet and really pray that they taste as good as they look.  You know, like if it’s a strawberry cupcake I ought to be hearing “Strawberry Fields Forever…” playing when I bite into it.  There are near countless numbers of small cupcake businesses out there right now and a good number of them photograph quite marvelously and have gotten a lot of press, but frankly, for me, they don’t exactly earn a standing ovation when it comes to their taste symphonies.  I absolutely can’t stand the huge ones that only entice with rustic pretty colored icing that just makes your teeth hurt.  For me there has to be more to a cupcake than just the bird’s eye view of it.  These cupcakes, ladies and gentlemen, are different. I actually judged them harshly at first when I first saw a few dark photos because they looked too dainty to look tasty, the size made them look plain, but I was wrong.  Up close they were WAY prettier than in those first few photos I saw.   The wife of Mom’s former client at work began making cupcakes at home, naming her simple little venture “Piece of Cake” and reportedly, she laboriously (duh) kitchen tests everything while zeroing in on the taste development of each cupcake offering.

“Piece of Cake” Homemade Cupcakes by Ruby Escosa +639178337829/ email:, FB Page:

I bit into one of the strawberry cupcakes (these simple ones right here with baby pink cream) and what I got was a fruity real strawberry taste explosion with just the right moist, sweet milkiness of a cupcake.  It sort of reminded me of Strawberry Fruitella (cue TVC here) but done properly into a pastry.  In the photo you’re seeing the chocolate cupcakes with a bit of salted caramel filling, the strawberry cream cupcakes, the simple vanilla cupcakes with blue & lavender blossoms, and the red velvet ones on the edge with ombre icing. You should have seen my sad eyes trail after the last strawberry cupcake Mom decided to take to Dad right away when I announced it was good, LOL.  That first bite was what I was hoping it would taste like and so much more.  Mom says the chocolate cupcakes are the best ones she’s ever tasted, I agree with her that they’re good but those strawberry ones are the BOMB.  I’ve included the details for ordering above…you know what to do next :)…after all, ’tis now the season for some sweet treats!… To full post & COMMENTS...

Emerald Green for 2013! – So Says Pantone

In all honesty green is one of my least favorite shades when it comes to makeup and clothes.  Because I have a very yellow undertone with oriental skin it’s not exactly a shade that complements me.  However if I absolutely had to choose a shade of green I would definitely lean towards emerald, the more cooler in the spectrum which sits somewhat in between kelly forest green and teal, do not confuse forest green or British racing green with emerald, totally different shades altogether.  Emerald has just been announced the Pantone color of the year for 2013 and while I might not wear it often I am glad it is the sort of green I prefer.  I only own one piece of emerald clothing, and it’s a tailored linen tube top Mom got me from Indonesia.  On my face I used L’oreal Lucent Magique foundation, Missha Perfect Concealer, Anastasia Express Brow kit for brows, and an Estee Lauder Pure Color lipstick in Mystic Mauve (from a Travel Exclusive set).

I’m wearing MBMJ stud earrings and over my emerald top I’m wearing my new M|phosis necklace (Php590)  in a gunmetal shade which I have been finding quite easy to wear even over plain white T-shirt tops.  I don’t usually force the issue and insist that I rock the color of the year with my wardrobe…never the case really but it’s fun to be able to see how the shade can work for you and just how many emerald green things the fashion industry will cough up for next year.  I don’t think I’d ever try emerald as makeup on myself, at most perhaps a gel liner or liquid liner just for fun but on a day to day basis I don’t think so.  Do you think you’ll be rocking 2013’s color of the year in any way?… To full post & COMMENTS...

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