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.

BBFS_2014_02

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...

Glam at 2015’s Golden Globes | My Top 5 in Beauty and Some Style Faves

I was only able to catch a portion of the live telecast of the 2015 Golden Globes earlier and it wasn’t the red carpet part which is what mattered where the blog was concerned.  I didn’t plan in advance to do a feature but when I saw certain faces I couldn’t help but decide to share with you who ranked as my top 5 in beauty (hair and makeup or just makeup).  We begin with number one who tops the list, simply because she’s the first face I saw during the ongoing program which convinced me to do this post.  In the past she was also featured as my favorite made-up face during the Academy Awards.  Photo sources will be placed at the end, but many of those official sites actually retrieve the same stuff from Getty images or other sites.  The ones whose outfits I also liked will have full-length photos.

1) JESSICA CHASTAIN

GG_jessica_01

Actor Jessica Chastain is gorgeous with or without makeup.  A lot of us have seen this disarmingly beautiful and talented redhead with the barely there look in movies like Tree of Life, Zero Dark Thirty, and more recently Interstellar.  I like how her hair and makeup looks are often so well balanced.  The base looks like skin and the eyes are intense but softly lined and her blush picks up on camera.  Plus that flowing red hair is unrivaled.  I wasn’t too keen on her dress but it was pretty still…because of her.  UK makeup artist Mary Greenwell (THE one Lisa Eldridge and Charlotte Tilbury apprenticed for) has done her makeup in the past, I’m not sure if she did Jessica’s makeup this time.  Easy on the eyes Jessica is, Yoda would say.  Click to see the rest.… To full post & COMMENTS...

Grazing on Green Kitchen Stories

To blog about another set of bloggers, the act is usually carried out when you’re truly inspired.  First thing’s first, let’s put it plain.  I love Instagram, along with millions of you out there.  I won’t say I’m addicted but that I have a healthy connection with the enabling app.  Other than my love for photography it was through Instagram that I connected with my makeup artist role model, UK Celebrity pro Lisa Eldridge, who liked and commented on two of my blogged makeup looks, and then I suddenly placed in one of her online contests a couple of weeks later and my face actually appeared on her website.  A couple of months after she sent me beauty prizes.  Now that I recall all that, it is still quite surreal for me…it’s amazing how a mobile app opened that window.  Instagram hosts a multitude of eye-catching personal portals to this wide, wide world of amazing people.  While engaged in beauty I also follow lots of other inspiring individuals who like to present good food.  One of the best presented online IG accounts I ever chose to follow was Green Kitchen Stories (@gkstories), behind the handle is Stockholm based couple David Frenkiel and Luise Vindahl.  There are a lot of food-inspired IG accounts but I do believe it’s mainly because of them that so many are presenting the healthy meals on their table from a bird’s eye view.  I’m so glad we have our own copy of this now.

Processed with VSCOcam with kk2 preset

I wasn’t aware that team @gkstories were already famous when I followed them early last year.  Online popularity bloomed for them between 2011 and 2012 when they started a cooking blog focused mainly on creating easy vegetarian dishes ( vegetarian = veggies, seeds, fruits + dairy and eggs sometimes).  In 2013, they published their first book The Green Kitchen.  Because of their creative food success, they’ve gotten to travel a lot, I think they were recently in Australia.  I haven’t kitchen tested this book yet, but it’s the first cookbook I read from the start all the way to the dessert tail right after we got it at Fully Booked, probably because of all those beautiful photos, short processes and simple words.  The only challenging aspect is a couple of the ingredients they source (looks like I might be beaching myself at Healthy Options, the weekend markets, and/or Santi’s).  I can’t wait to try the recipes this coming week.  The book contains a list of the pantry ingredients they use on a regular basis, a collection of basic methods, recipes for breakfast, light meals, entrees, to-go picks, desserts, and drinks.  It is also full of breathtaking photos and that for me is the fresh cherry on top.  This one isn’t in the book but is a recent one from their site.

GKSTORIES_feat_02

Beet, Apple, Quinoa, and Sprout Salad, photo credit: greenkitchenstories.com

This book would be wonderful for making lots of fresh food and drinks in the summertime.  Lots of you know that I also love to cook and bake occasionally so I’m hoping to kinda cook my way somewhat through their book, but not everything perhaps due to availability of ingredients.  I don’t do it everyday (I should) though I believe I just might have a knack for it (‘coz some people attack my food ’til it’s gone) and I will admit I’m not afraid to try complicated dishes.  I also have an appreciation for simple healthy preparations you can toss together with hands.  I think a notch up versus my appreciation for Instagram is my love for the edible plant world: herbs, fruits, fungi, legumes, and vegetables.  I’m not vegetarian but I love eating them, making salads, and cooking with them.  When it comes to cooking there are tons of food blogs out there but there are a handful of gems with great culinary quality like GK Stories.  A few years ago and up ’til now I still like Jennifer’s Tiny Urban Kitchen blog for the Asian side of food prep and appreciation.  Jennifer’s also brilliant because she’s sort of like a former chemist turned food fanatic (featured by CNN Eatocracy awhile back).  She also loves to include creative culinary ventures using characters like Totoro in her food.… To full post & COMMENTS...

NIVEA Facial Cleansing Wipes | Take It Off Your Way

No babies in the house, ladies!  We’re talkin’ bout our faces here.  It’s high time we’ve had a decent, affordable fleet of facial wipes to turn to.  To be honest, even before I received these packs of Nivea Daily Essentials facial wipes I was already using the Nivea baby wipes in my kit for quick, gentle cleanup moments.  Nivea is a pharmacy skincare brand I’ve always trusted to be gentle on skin.  They’ve given us 2 cleansing wipe variants for two skin types: gentle, alcohol-free wipes with Almond Oil for Dry/Sensitive skin, and textured wipes with Magnolia Extract for Oily skin and/or heavier makeup.

Processed with VSCOcam with lv03 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with s1 preset

NIVEA GENTLE Cleansing Wipes (25 pcs. Alcohol-Free) w/ Natural Almond Oil & Hydra IQ Php140 “removes makeup and waterproof mascara”

These are the ones I personally tried, and it doesn’t sting my eyes when I’m removing eye makeup since it’s alcohol-free, it is mildly scented but pleasantly.  It does remove waterproof eye makeup but not without a firm bit of effort on your part, with a little time put in it eventually gets the job done.  

With any pack of wipes the liquid might tend to migrate to the bottom of the pack so I think it’s good to give the pack a quick, firm squeeze to juice up the wipes before opening it and pulling out your first few.

 

Processed with VSCOcam with s4 preset

 

NIVEA EXFOLIATING Wipes (20pcs.) Php140 “soft side deeply cleanses and removes makeup, peeling side exfoliates skin.”

These ones I haven’t used yet to remove heavy makeup but in my opinion I’d rather do the opposite and use the textured side to help rub off the heavy makeup and use the soft side to attack the remainder.  Keep cleansing with these wipes restricted to a safe area around the eyes since these aren’t alcohol-free.

The nice thing also about finally having a team of wipes specifically for the face is you no longer have to lug around that ginormous pack of baby wipes in your handbag, unless you really want or need to.  These packs of wipes are in a more night-out friendly size than packs of baby wipes so you have more room to host the rest of your beauty bits in your handbag.  Nivea Facial wipes are available at Watsons and leading grocery stores or department stores nationwide for Php140.00 a pack.

 

Follow @niveaPhils on Instagram for special treats and brand updates.

*complimentary product packs were sponsored

 

 

 … To full post & COMMENTS...

My Top 10 Personal Makeup Picks 2014

Here’s the first wave and naturally, I cheated a little bit ‘coz there aren’t exactly only 10 items.  Some tied with others. If you notice I entitled this post “Personal Makeup Picks” meaning these are the items I use the most for myself.  I’m still contemplating whether I should do a “Pro Makeup Picks” list in addition to my “Bath, Body, and Skincare Picks”.  Let me know in the Disqus comments if you’d like me to put up a pro list as well.

HITS2014_01

There are one or two items that tied off in the process because either I wanted to mention a cheaper alternative that I use just as much or they address the same facial feature but just in a different color.  If you factor in optional substitution it generally is my top 10 line up for last year.  They’re not ranked according to number, each are what I feel are the best for me in the purpose they serve.  Click Read More to see the full post, my top 10 makeup lineup with my thoughts.… To full post & COMMENTS...

Jonathan Adler Scented Candles | Flame Fancy

My Top 10 Makeup bits for 2014 was supposed to go up today.  I shot it already but the flu that I’ve had incubating just got me really down now and so I’m not in the best condition for writing a long detailed post at the moment with many photos.  My head hurts and my throat is itchy so I’ve postponed that to tomorrow night hopefully and have decided to go with a simpler post for now with stuff that I didn’t buy or receive but discovered earlier at Dimensione.  If you’ve never had a whiff of these luxe candles by Jonathan Adler you certainly need to experience their scents even if just in store.  The scents are not executed super literally according to title (e.g. their “sea salt” candle brings to mind a delightfully clean, brute dude) but are thoughtfully put in fragrant context.  They are a whole ‘nother level of awesome.  If money were no object I would have taken the Earl Grey one home with me in a heartbeat but I’m using up other candles at the moment.  The good people of Dimensione Alabang gave me permission to take photos since I couldn’t afford one for now.  Even unlit these send pleasure up your nose as soon as you open the box.

Processed with VSCOcam with g2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c3 preset

They are pricey, but for obvious reasons.  The line certainly makes it to the candle league of Diptyque and Malin + Goetz, but I think you get substantially a bit more candle for the price.  The 8 oz. J. Adler Earl Grey one (hear me swoon) is in the Php2500 range, while Diptyque’s standard 6 oz. one is close to Php3000 locally from Rustan’s.  These are great (the Fig one is also wonderfully forest-y) but the piece de resistance is this huge one also by Jonathan Adler, Muse Blanc, a very pretty feminine scent which reminds me of Acca Kappa Muschio Bianco but in a slightly more floral way.  Some might get creeped out by the faces, but I don’t…I think it’s pretty and it reminds me of some of the characters in The Neverending Story film.  The candle pot is a grainy matte ceramic finish.  This one is huge compared to the first ones above and is in the Php4k range.

jon_adler_05

Processed with VSCOcam with c2 presetThe Jonathan Adler candle range is available at select outlets of Dimensione, the staff I asked confirmed at Alabang and BGC Fort.… To full post & COMMENTS...

My Selfie Secret is Out (Plus A Contest) | Freshlook Colorblend Lenses in PURE HAZEL

I’ve been asked a number of times now about what colored contact lenses I use when I’m out and about.  In fact the first person who ever specifically noticed my contact lenses when I first began wearing them was my first cousin, Gab V., two years ago at his older brother’s wedding.  I first asked him if I looked okay or if I overdid my makeup as a bridesmaid.  He said “You look nice, your eyes…wait, are you wearing contacts?” I confessed LOL and he smiled and said back to me ” ‘Coz if you are they’re nice, it’s not like whoa those other scary contacts…it makes a  difference but it looks like your eyes pa rin, enhanced lang.”  I really strained my brain for the exact words he said without imagining or exaggerating and that’s as close as I remember.  I’m so glad I can finally get the word out on what colored lenses I use, sorry it took so long, I know so many of you have been asking.  I constantly repurchase Freshlook’s Colorblend enhancers in PURE HAZEL which is like a blond brown that merges with my eye color for a believable wearable effect.  I simply must not wear glasses at events and I attend quite a handful so I wear contacts (because my grade is high and different for left and right.  The effect of these made me bother to once again wear a pair frequently.

1795778_10151931234211767_1338631648_n

url

Freshlook PH have an ongoing contest until January 15, 2015 where you can win a 3-month supply of Freshlook color contact lenses and an Instax Mini 8 camera!  To join and get a chance to win you must upload a selfie on Facebook, Twitter, OR Instagram (any of the 3 platforms) and mention in the caption why Freshlook is your “selfie secret”.  Don’t forget to tag the coordinators @FreshlookPh and @TeamInstaxPh and use the hashtags #FreshlookSelfie #FreshlookPh

You may recall this overly used “no makeup” makeup selfie of mine (yes it is a DSLR selfie, with both arms) which turned out quite successful as a profile image.  I snapped myself before running out the door to leave the house, not realizing I had taken a very good photo with natural light, LOL, and it is an actual selfie.  For an instant “Fresh Look” I just pop in my colorblends, curl my lashes like a pro and load them up with a non-clumping, waterproof mascara (both top and bottom)…BAM…eyes to mesmerize.

Processed with VSCOcam with c2 presetWhat’s nice about the Colorblend range is it doesn’t completely cover your natural eye color, it just enhances or tints them with a translucent wash of your chosen hue.  So people still see your real eye color behind the lenses.  It’s kind of like that instant contrast button on Instagram haha.  To be honest Colorblends are not initially the MOST comfortable range of Freshlook (the illuminate line is, I forget I’m wearing contacts with those) but for the visual effect what I do to boost comfort is soak and rinse my Colorblend lenses overnight daily in RENU which is an all-in-one solution, also before first use I soak them overnight.

PS MECHANICS: Freshlook PH have an ongoing contest until January 15, 2015 where you can win a 3-month supply of Freshlook color contact lenses and an Instax Mini 8 camera!  To join and get a chance to win you must upload a selfie on Facebook, Twitter, OR Instagram (any of the 3 platforms) and say why Freshlook is your “selfie secret”.  Don’t forget to tag the coordinators @FreshlookPh and @TeamInstaxPh and use the hashtags #FreshlookSelfie #FreshlookPhTo full post & COMMENTS...

Movie Minute | Still Alice trailer stokes gratitude…

I’ve been sleeping a lot, recuperating a lot since Christmas passed.  I haven’t allowed my consciousness to slip away like this in years come to think of it.  I’ve never been fond of naps.  I always thought naps were a waste of time and daylight, that is ’til I realized naps provide a comforting albeit temporary escape from a constantly haphazard world.  So slowly I am picking up the pieces before 2015 rolls in and have been screening film trailers online for the sake of it, something I used to do a lot but put away for awhile.  This isn’t a movie review because I haven’t seen this movie yet.  According to a very particular writer friend Still Alice is excellent and for being in a drama genre he claims it’s done tastefully and that acting isn’t overtly melodramatic (he mentioned “no slapping….”).  It is based on the book by NY Times bestselling author Lisa Genova.  The trailer moved me so much I just had to say something about it before we try to watch later on.  It made me realize there is just so much to be thankful for.  After getting that preview I went down to hug my mother.

STILL_alice_01

 

“I’m not suffering, I’m struggling…”

 

Another good friend said the book was great, too.  The film’s lead cast includes the incomparable Julianne Moore, Alec Baldwin, Kristen Stewart, and Kate Bosworth all given roles that seem to fit like gloves.  At least that’s what I can pick up from the trailer alone.  Very simply put it’s a movie about an intelligent woman with the onset symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, the feared degenerative illness where you slowly and literally lose your mind.  It supposedly isn’t a light movie, but I don’t mind heavy screen plots as long as what is meaningful is placed at the heart of the story.  I guess I was also looking to be stoked for gratefulness, something that’s really important to me towards the end of the year.  Looking forward to watching this one, it comes highly recommended so I’m told, here’s the trailer.

To full post & COMMENTS...

Page optimized by WP Minify WordPress Plugin