Bless My Bag

beauty bagged by a cheeky Filipina

MAC “Club” Eyeshadow Makes the Military Smoky Eye, F/W 2012

Muddied fatigue and khaki shades are in at the moment, the warm complementary browns enhance that craved shade of moss tinted army “greige”.  That being said, if you feel young enough to get trendy I believe you’ll survive and thrive with one, yes, just one eyeshadow this nippy season, that has dual personality under its lid.  I only own 2 MAC eyeshadows which I bought in Singapore last year, and MAC Club is one of them…an eternally useful satin duochrome with schizophrenic skills, part of MAC’s permanent range (Thank God).  If you stare at this shade for the first time I guarantee you’ll take at least 10 seconds to dig up words to describe MAC Club to the person in front of you.  It’s positively special.

The duochrome effect does the work for people who are lazy when it comes to eyeshadow. 

It takes care of making one shade look like two, initially bearing a military khaki shade while when tilted to another angle reflecting a warm coffee taupe that appears to be darker in the crease of the eye when applied.  This eyeshadow has saved me more than once on photo shoots when the brief requires a deep smoky eye on many models and I’ve got no time to fiddle with more than one eyeshadow.  Read more to see the military eye look I created using  two eye products (not including mascara and concealer for the face).


Droplets of Nature All-Natural Dishwashing Liquid – Works like Joy but isn’t like Joy

I recently mentioned that I used Joy Antibac dishwashing liquid to clean my makeup brushes in my post the other day, right?  Had I tested this other product sooner, this, not Joy, would have been part of the feature.  Meet a locally available dishwashing liquid concentrate brought to us by Droplets of Nature  and is just as effective as Joy (actively foams, too) plus is made from surfactants derived from potatoes, corn, and coconut.  If you’re iffy about using Joy on cosmetic brushes (I personally am not) substitute Joy in this brush cleaning tutorial with this.

ECO-FRIENDLY DISHWASHING LIQUID (in photo: 500ml bottle)

“Our dishwashing liquid is made from potato/corn based surfactant, which is listed as Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) by the US Food & Drugs Administration. * Highly Concentrated (a tiny drop is enough for 4 to 6 pieces of plates or 5 tablespoon of the dishwashing liquid can be mixed to one cup of water for the most economical way)  With Cinnamon and Peppermint Essential Oils.” 

//PRICE: P156 > 500ml //P285 > 1 liter

Effective | Concentrated | Paraben-Free | Phosphate-Free | SLES-free | Biodegradable | Not tested on animals (has the cruelty-free bunny seal)

You know, it foams like a dream on dishes as well as makeup brushes, our cook who’s been with us since before I was born (over 30 years) just said so a few minutes ago “Aba, Jul MABULA siya! (it’s very bubbly)”. Plus you know the essential oils in it helps provide the slip needed to remove food grease, because oil removes oil, then the foaming action rinses out well.  The concentrate is not as runny in consistency as Joy is, it’s thicker, it’ll remind you more of a liquid gel hand soap when you pump it out, but it works so well as a brush cleansing alternative.  A few pumps, I’d say about 2 or 3, diluted in 1 cup of water is enough to do probably 10+ dishes if you’re frugal with the proper use of the sponge.  I know it doesn’t beat Joy’s 1 drop to like half a liter of water but that also tells you how chemically intense Joy is.  Now, am not about to go on an ANTI-JOY rampage here, okay?  I’m just presenting an eco-friendly alternative.  Check out how many brushes I cleaned yesterday with this, you see the solution amount in the bowl.

in photo: Ecotools bronzing brushes, 2 Charm brushes, and an Ellana XL buffing brush

You know what, after doing these brushes (using my Deep Cleansing Method in this previous post) with about a 3/4 cup solution of water and Droplets of Nature’s dishwashing fluid…my hands didn’t itch AT ALL as they usually do after I use Joy. What you’re seeing in the bowl is how much solution (water + dishwashing liquid) I used to clean these 5 big, fluffy, dense makeup brushes yesterday which are separate from the set I cleaned the other day, and that solution had some left over afterwards.  Now that these brushes are dry from yesterday, they look and feel like when they were new.  Normally if I do this many makeup brushes with Joy (lathering them up in my left hand repeatedly) my hands tend to itch after I rinse.  Now, I know what you’re thinking, what about what it can do in the Anti-bacterial department?

(it looks a little green here, but that’s just the photo from their site.  The true color is shown in my first photo)

For anti-bacterial properties it doesn’t say anything specific but it does say it’s loaded with cinnamon and peppermint oils.  There have been recent as well as older studies that show Cinnamon’s effectivity in the anti-microbial department, and this dishwashing liquid contains lots of cinnamon oil, so much that you can definitely smell the cinnamon and peppermint when washing the dishes, isn’t that pleasant and great for this holiday season?

“Cinnamon’s essential oils also qualify it as an “anti-microbial” food, and cinnamon has been studied for its ability to help stop the growth of bacteria as well as fungi, including the commonly problematic yeast Candida. In laboratory tests, growth of yeasts that were resistant to the commonly used anti-fungal medication fluconazole was often (though not always) stopped by cinnamon extracts.

Cinnamon’s antimicrobial properties are so effective that recent research demonstrates this spice can be used as an alternative to traditional food preservatives. In a study, published in the August 2003 issue of the International Journal of Food Microbiology, the addition of just a few drops of cinnamon essential oil to 100 ml (approximately 3 ounces) of carrot broth, which was then refrigerated, inhibited the growth of the foodborne pathogenic Bacillus cereus for at least 60 days. ” – source:

Nothing like getting a bit of Christmas-y aromatherapy while doing household chores.  Don’t worry about an aftertaste being left on your plates, it rinses off extremely well.  I also like the peace of mind this brings when you’re eating off of a plate that you know has been cleansed with something all-natural.  You can purchase this product online here via AND in regular retail via Cash & Carry; Landmark; DutyFree Philippines; Finds; Bora Budget; Pepper Jack; Echostore International Freeport; Numa; Baby Land; Baby Step; Buy Low Supermarket. 

//PRICE: P156 > 500ml //P285 > 1 liter

To learn the method I use to clean my makeup brushes where you can substitute Joy for this product, click here.

Follow DROPLETS OF NATURE on Facebook here.

*product provided by brand for review




Blog Breakaway | Limited Edition Minute Steak Meals Php395 @ 2nd’s

Bless those bellies!  The following four yummy value-for-money gourmet dishes will only be around at 2nd’s for the next 10 days until October ends.  Having attended the food tasting with my good friends, the owners of 2nd’s Restaurant in BGC Fort (behind Nike @ HighStreet), I can guarantee you won’t forget these 4 yummy minute steak meals when they’re gone.  So make it quick and bring a friend for lunch or dinner!  All dishes are Php395.00 each. (Enumerated just for the blog).

1. Minute Steak & Eggs
-Grilled and served with Ketchup Beurre Blanc and Bacon & Potato Hash.
2. Minute Bistecca Fiorentina
-Seasoned with Rosemary & Lemon. Served with Cherry Tomato & Arugula Aglio Olio on pasta
Part owners, Director Luis and his brother, top golfer Miguel Tabuena digging into Minute Bistecca Fiorentina.
Click Read more to discover the two other meals on the Minute Steak menu…


Cleaning My Makeup Brushes – Two Ways that Work for Me as a Pro

Welcome to brush cleaning tutorial # 533,381 *LOL*.  It’s true!  There are hundreds if not thousands of brush cleaning tutorials online offered by amateurs and experts alike, not to mention a whole variety of brush cleaning sprays, fluids and cleansers available on the market.  In my opinion, brush cleaning shouldn’t triple the cost of your already expensive trade as a makeup artist if you are one nor should it painfully mark up your hobby as a beauty blogger or cosmetic enthusiast.  Brush cleaning is something that has to be done, as long as you own makeup brushes and use them, you must know how to clean them properly.  Today, I’m going to share with you what products I use and how I’ve been cleansing my brushes as a professional.  I use Make Up For Ever Brush Cleanser which contains Alcohol and Tea Tree Oil (I’ve just used up the last few spritzes, it lasted me 1 year and a half) for spot cleaning before each job and Joy Ultra Dishwashing Antibacterial Detergent (with Safeguard) for deep  cleansing after every 3-4 major makeup jobs.

One of the first things that Camille, my French makeup teacher, shared is that what absolutely works brilliantly for deep brush cleansing surprisingly is the cheapest, non-moisturizing, stripping soap you can find, great plus if they’re antibacterial “Sometimes ze cheaper ze soap ze better eet iz for the brushes, just get zat really cheap soap”.  Those are usually the tiny complimentary white soaps you find in resorts or hotels (she says she stocks up) or yes in my case, grease-stripping dishwashing fluid.  The principle of cleaning brushes is quite straightforward and surprisingly simple and if some of you have noticed that your brush heads no longer retain the same shape or feel as when you bought them (clumped bristles that don’t snap back to shape, greasy feel, or worse funny smell) then there is certainly something wrong in the way you are cleansing them even if you are using the right products.  I’m sharing this because I know, I’ve cleaned my brushes wrong a few times before.  Your brushes should feel soft again once completely dry and look like new, save for perhaps some discoloration because of product.  I’m not fond of brush cleaners that require you pour then SOAK brushes in them, they’re often wasteful and more expensive.  Click Read More to see the two ways I use step-by-step to 1.) Spot clean my brushes and 2.) Deep clean my brushes.


Human Nature Eucalyptus Hand & Foot Salve – Smells Like…

…as in seriously smells like Storck Eucalyptus Menthol candies which bear an intense blast of the past for me.  One whiff of this locally available hand & foot cream by Human Nature as you put it on and you will tell me “OMIGAWRSH, yes!” just as my mom and fellow bloggers did when I said so to them at a recent gathering.

Contains Eucalyptus essential oil plus oregano, spearmint, lemon balm extracts and a cooling sensation brought on by menthol, with coconut/palm derived glycerin and sunflower seed oil to hydrate hands and feet.

100% NO HARMFUL CHEMICALS – Free of parabens, mineral oil, silicones, pthalates and other toxins.

I’ll be honest when I say I wish there was more to it than its incredibly nostalgic scent, but a note on that is there’s that lemon note at the end that doesn’t quite land smoothly scent-wise, kind of like an off-tangent sour note after the refreshing whiff of eucalyptus.  I put this on and I was like “Omg, Storck!” then when that moment passed I was like “Hmmm, okayyy…nothing significantly holy grail like on the skin…”  It does the job of moisturizing, but not in a more impressive way than any other low to mid-range hand lotion.  At the back of your mind you might feel better about it being toxin-free and smelling uniquely uplifting, but I definitely want effects that I can feel pronto and not just something to slather on.  They say it’s because of “synthetic feel modifiers” that other products feel great on the skin but I don’t agree with that entirely because I have tried organic stuff that does give me supple payoff.  For the price of Php130.00 , I think it’s generally a good buy, especially for people who easily experience nausea and need some aromatherapy to put on to take dryness dizziness away.  You can purchase this from the Human Nature site here, local delivery.

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