WEIL-y Good: Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins

My skin has been behaving well lately. It’s extremely rare that I get to say that (I fear jinxing it as I type this!) and even more rare that I can say so in describing long stretches of time. It’s been a long while since I had any major skin problems and while I think that is in large part because there is less stress in my life, I also think that incorporating some of the Dr.Weil for Origins skincare line into my routine has helped effect this change.dsc09545I discovered the line when I was desperately trying to remedy some nasty red, painful patches on my face caused by an over-zealous application of Elica cream on skin asthma rashes. Elica (a steroidal cream) usually cures ALL — and true enough my itchy patches were gone — but instead I was left with painful redness instead.

As I was already a fan of Origins’ other face masks, I decided that giving the Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Mask would be a safe bet. The WEIL range is quite pricey (especially outside the USA) and if not for the convenient travel-size packs Origins sells at Selfridges, I never would have paid for the full-sized tube. Now that I’ve tried it out though, I think it’s worth every penny / centavo. Every single time I use that mask, I wake up with glowing, supple, healthy skin. I don’t use the mask often — I like to save it for the night before a special day or event.

The Mega-Bright Spot Correcting Night Mask is something I decided to pick up for those nights when I want a heavier cream on my face. It has vitamin C in it, which will help lighten dark spots over time. I like it a lot, but I tend to forget that I have it (just because it’s in a heavy tub that somehow ends up hiding behind all of my taller products). On most nights, I like using something lighter to moisturise my skin, like a serum. The Dr. Weil serum is nice (had a sample, as you can see above), but I never repurchased it because it is so pricey. dsc09533Instead, I ended up buying a full size of the Mega-Mushroom Skin Relief Soothing Treatment Lotion. It’s a treatment lotion with a light consistency (just a tad thicker than water) but it packs a punch. I use it almost nightly and sometimes in the morning when my skin is feeling dull. dsc09534The treatment lotion supposedly defends skin against “silent skin agers.” My question is: what are skin agers that aren’t silent? Lol. All I know is that it makes my skin feel soft, healthy, and maintain just the right levels of moisture. From time to time I will supplement it with heavier night creams, but this is perfect for daily use.

So I obviously haven’t tried every product from the Dr. Weil for Origins range, but if these three items are any indicator, then I’m willing to bet the entire line is pretty damn impressive. It doesn’t hurt that the shades of green Origins uses for the packaging on this line are gorgeous!

Have you tried any of the other products from this line?

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The Body Shop’s Tea Tree Range (Anti-Imperfection Daily Solution & 3-in-1 Wash-Scrub-Mask)

I remember a time when nearly every girl in our school carried a The Body Shop Born Lippy lip balm around. The chunky tub of sticky, sickly sweet (smelling) jelly sat comfortably in my deep Catholic school girl skirt pocket and gave me an odd sense of assurance that everything would be O.K. — my lips didn’t just taste like strawberry (my preferred scent/flavour), they emanated the smell too, such that no one could dare doubt that it was the TBS lip balm I had on. It was the “in” thing and I was “in” because I had it.

(Way) more than a decade later, I can’t imagine going back to using that lip balm (more like a lip candy gloss), but I still think that The Body Shop has some good stuff to offer if you look past their overly scented and overpriced body butters. DSC09266.jpgI’ve been a fan of Tea Tree tree oil and its many uses for a long while now, so when I saw that TBS reworked and expanded their Tea Tree range, I was very much willing to have a look at it and reconsider my previous stance on it — which was pretty much that it sucked. I don’t know what they’ve changed, but it feels like everything (yay).

From the expanded range I picked up the Anti-Imperfection Daily Solution and the 3-in-1 Wash-Scrub-Mask.

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Summer Daily Base (Light, Protective, and Easy!)

The sun has actually been making an appearance in London over the past few weeks (the British do have a summer – hooray!) and so my daily base routine has changed to adjust to that. If the sun is out, I am out and facing it. You can count on that. DSC08487.jpgThe very base of my base is the La Roche-Posay Anthelios XL Ultra Light Fluid (approx. £17 but always on some kind of offer). It has an SPF of 50+ and protects against UVA and UVB rays. This “ultra-light” variant works fine on my combination skin while I’m here in the UK, but the Dry Touch Gel Cream would probably be better for me back home in the Philippines. It’s important to use sunscreen throughout the year, but when summer comes around I really bring out the big guns.

Everything else that goes into my base for the summer revolves around the good old less is more philosophy.
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Genius New Product or Total Gimmick: The Origins Maskimizer

If you like face masks, Origins has a range of some twelve or thirteen to choose from. The most popular ones are the Clear Improvement charcoal mask, the Drink Up Intensive mask, and the Out of Trouble mask. I own all three of those, plus the new Original Skin retexturising mask, and they are all really great. I have my eyes on the Ginzing refreshing mask to try next because I love the moisturiser from that range, but I was popping into Boots to restock my charcoal mask when I caught sight of a new product: the Maskimizer (£ 18.50), which is a “skin-optimising mask primer.”

Origins says that the Maskimizer is a “(p)riming mist with Marine Algae Complex (that) helps hydrate, soften and optimise the appearance of skin so it’s fully prepped to enhance your mask experience.” DSC06413Sounds a bit gimmicky, eh? It’s either gimmicky or absolutely brilliant — and I wouldn’t have picked it up if not for the special offer that brought its price down to just about £7 if I bought it together with my fave Origins mask. Like I said, I was in need of a new charcoal mask, so I thought: why not! I could test it out with all of my other Origins masks as well. 

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The New Elizbeth Arden Eight Hour All-Over Miracle OIL + An Impulse Buy My Grandmother Would Be Proud of

I love, love, love the Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour Cream. I professed that love in a post I put up a couple of years ago and have been through several tubes of the stuff since. I was about to restock mine at Boots when I got sucked into trying out the shiny and *new* Eight Hour All-Over Miracle OIL, instead.DSC06399The oil (priced at £29.00 for 100mL) is the newest addition to the vast Eight Hour line and is a multi-purpose dry oil that you can use on your face, hair, and all over your body. As it is a dry oil, it is meant to sink in much faster than its heavier sister, the Eight Hour Cream. It smells nothing like the cream (this is slightly floral, the cream slightly medicinal — the original scent at least) and it pretty much behaves nothing like the cream. I thought I would be able to replace the cream with this, but that just isn’t the case.

I only found exactly one use for this multi-purpose oil in my life: as a hair oil. I can’t use it on my face because the scent irritates my skin and as a hand cream, it doesn’t last long. In fact, my hands felt a lot drier when I was using the oil.  Weird. Anyway, it’s saving grace is that it’s a damn good hair oil. I still need a new Eight Hour Cream though!

Right, on to more positive things!DSC06397I also got sucked into buying a new foundation that day. There was some promo that knocked £7 off any Elizabeth Arden base, so I picked out the Flawless Finish Perfectly Satin 24 Hr Foundation (£28.00), which is a medium coverage, oil-free, and low SPF base that’s great for combo-oily skin types.

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Handbag Staples: Burt’s Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream & Res-Q Ointment

DSC05803Burt’s Bees has a lot of hand care options for just one brand (see here) and I’ve actually had the chance to try out most of them. I’ve never really liked the ones in tubes much for some reason, but the Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream (650.00 Php / 6.49 GBP) is something that I’ve had for a while and like to take around with me when I carry smaller handbags.

Recently, I received the Res-Q Ointment (650.00 Php / 6.49 GBP) as part of an outdoors-themed Christmas set and although it isn’t described as a product just for the hands (it’s more like a multi-use healing balm — will explain more below), I like to use it on my hands because my terrible habit of biting the skin around my nails leaves me with little wounds.

I use the Cuticle Cream and the Res-Q ointment almost interchangeably these days, but they are technically not the same product. Let’s have a look at both of them: 

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Meeting The Queen and Other General Updates From London

Hello! So —

I have been in London for just over a month now and I wish I could tell you guys that I’ve been doing loads of beauty-related things. The reality is that I’ve been busy getting used to just surviving here and adjusting to school. It’s all going great, but it’s been a bit hectic. Anyway, the highlight of my month was definitely beauty-related: I met THE Lisa Eldridge at a book signing event! It was crazy. Let me tell you all about it and I’ll fill you in on a few other, less important,  things at the end — because really, what is more important than meeting Lisa Eldridge?

The Day I Met The Queen (Of Makeup)

IMG_2711Lisa hosted a signing for her new book, Face Paint: The Story of Makeup, at Hatchard’s in London. I made my way over to the book store right after my classes for the day ended and I was early so I milled around a bit before we were allowed to start queueing at 5pm. 

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Introducing: Bioré’s Line Up of Makeup Removers

About a week or so before leaving Manila, a bundle of some of Bioré’s different types of makeup removers arrived on my doorstep. I was ecstatic because this ups the number of readily accessible cleansing oils and micellar waters in Manila (the most popular other brands being Shu Uemura for the cleansing oil and Bioderma for micellar cleansing water).

Bioré, if you are unfamiliar with the brand, is of Japanese origin. They are well-known for their sunblocks locally, but apparently their makeup removing products are best-sellers in Japan. I trust Japanese skin care almost by default (you really should never do this but if there’s any one country that knows its skincare it’s Japan, so…) and so I didn’t hesitate to dive in and test all of these products immediately.
DSC04362The bundle I received included all three of Bioré’s makeup removing products: the Cleansing Oil (in the pump bottle and the two small travel bottles), the Micellar Cleansing Water, and the Cotton Sheets. There is also a 2-in-1 foaming Cleanser, but I unfortunately haven’t been able to try that out.

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A #BetterMe Story, Feat. SkinWhite’s Advanced Whitening Range

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SkinWhite Advanced Power Whitening Soap – 26 Php for 65g, 44 Php for 90g, and 60.75 Php for 125g

SkinWhite Advanced Whitening Facial Cleanser – (Price not indicated)

SkinWhite Advanced Whitening Facial Powder – 67 Php for 20g

SkinWhite Advanced Power Whitening Lotion – 71 Php for 50mL, 123 Php for 75mL, and 235 Php for 200 mL

I tend to like brands that create a community, and really, all brands should strive to do just that. If people are attracted to your products, that’s already one thing they have in common. Why not turn those consumers into a supportive group of friends? Well, that’s exactly what SkinWhite did with their latest batch of girls who formed this year’s Captivate Council.  

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What’s On My Bedside Table

I was watching some home organisation videos on YouTube the other day and came across a few dedicated solely to nightstand / bedside table organisation. I was so engrossed in the videos (it’s like watching “What’s in My Bag” vids!) that I definitely lost a few of hours of my life, but it was totally worth my time, methinks. Different people keep very different things in and on their nightstands and it’s totally revealing of one’s personality and pre-sleep priorities.

I thought I’d share my own nightstand on here because most ladies keep some skincare by their beds and I am no exception. My bedside table isn’t very large and I don’t use the drawers to keep things I need at night (they get stuck easily so I just don’t bother to open them much), so everything important sits right on top. Here’s how I have it set up:
DSC02557I have a stack of books, a Wesco Peppy can peeping from behind that stack, a coaster, and a reading lamp. This corner of my room looks extra nice at night when all my lights except for the reading lamp are off. Now that I think of it, I should have taken a photo of it at night, but I’m so used to waiting for sunlight so that I can photograph makeup that I just…didn’t. Oh well.

Anyway, like I said, the drawers don’t house anything I need at night because they’re a pain to pull open. But in case you’re curious, the top drawer holds some of my notebook collection and the bottom drawer is where I store old hard drives. Everything I do need right before bed is within arm’s reach. 

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