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.
DSC08779.jpg

Continue Reading

Advertisements

The Makeup Brushes I Can’t Live Without

Allow me to begin this post by saying that as of my last count, I have over 50 makeup brushes. I don’t have all of them out and in rotation on my vanity simply because there are so many of them, but I have tested each and every one. As such, I know which ones I like enough to use everyday and — as many as there are — I had no problem at all picking out my absolute favourites. These brushes don’t necessarily form a complete set and they aren’t even all expensive brushes, but they are the best at what they do and I cannot imagine living without them.
DSC03659Sonia Kashuk No. 1 Brush – Sonia Kahsuk is a brand that sells exclusively at Target and I make it a point to pick up at least one brush from her line whenever I get the chance. The regular brushes with the white handles are OK, but the black, curvy-handled ones are the best. They range in price from 15-20 USD. This No.1 brush is the most amazing fluffy powder brush.

Sonia Kashuk (???) Brush – This one was from a special collection and the number has rubbed off, but it’s just a smaller version of the No.1 Brush. I use it to apply heavier powder foundations. Like the larger No.1 Brush, it’s incredibly soft.

Continue Reading

Christmas “Haul” 2013! :)

Hi guys! I hope everyone had a great Christmas this year, whether you celebrate it or not. :) For me, the best part is getting to see my family all in one place. I’m pretty close to my cousins and it’s really fun to spend time with them and exchange gifts once the clock strikes 12 on Christmas day. :) This year I got most of my friends and family little leather keychains from Katre with their initials monogrammed on. I ordered all of them way back in October to minimize Christmas shopping stress. I still had to scramble for a couple of gifts, but it worked for the most part. :)

As for the gifts I receive, I usually get a lot of practical things because if I’m lucky enough to be asked, I tell my titas (aunts) what I need. For example, last year, I asked for a safe box and a hairdryer and received both of them exactly as I had specified. Other than that, all my other little presents tend to be useful things like electronics, books, organizational tools, or clothes… I guess what I’m getting at is that I don’t usually get makeup as a present. This year was different, though. I got a nice little bunch of beauty-related presents, so I thought it would be nice to do a little “haul” to share them with you guys. :)
CH3The first (and the sweetest) thing is this travel size Sigma E75 blending brush.

Continue Reading

Shu Uemura’s Fresh Pore Clarifying Cleansing Oil: Why I Use It + Why It’s Worth It

2013 was all about finding the right skincare routine for my combination-oily skin. I know I’ve said this before but I’ll say it again: I hate having oily skin. I’d much rather deal with dry skin. That said, having combination skin isn’t an absolute hell hole if you know how to deal with it. That obviously took a lot of time and experimentation to figure out, but when it comes to the cleansing part of my skin care routine, I’m all about oil cleansers.

If you do a little research about the “oil cleansing method” online, you’ll find a lot of articles talking about natural oils (castor, almond, olive) and how to make a mixture of those to use as a cleanser (it will depend on your skin type because yes, all skin types can benefit from OCM). I personally can’t be bothered to go out and buy three or four different natural oils, so I use the Shu Uemura Fresh cleansing oil instead. I have nothing against going for natural products, but there’s a reason why one bottle of the Shu Uemura cleansing oil is sold every second. It’s also been the #1 cleansing oil since 1967. That’s the kind of product I’d bet my money on. And in a way, I actually have.
SUCO1This is my first empty 450mL bottle of the Shu Uemura cleansing oil. It lasted me just about 9 months, which is pretty good. Funny how finishing a product makes you feel a little sense of accomplishment, especially when it’s a jumbo size of something! So I let myself feel that little bit of happiness before I realized I would have to shell out quite a bit of money for a new bottle. Lol.

Before I even bought this full-sized bottle, I did try some other cheaper options. The most readily available one locally would be the MUJI cleansing oil. That, for some reason, just didn’t jive well with my skin. It did not cause any reactions but I didn’t feel like it cleaned my skin as effectively as Shu Uemura’s cleansing oil (which I had a lot of samples of). MUJI’s version is much more affordable at around 400 Php per 200mL bottle, but I also seemed to need more of it to get it to work.
SUCO2Shu Uemura’s cleansing oils come in many different variants and the 450mL bottle will set you back anywhere from 3000 – 5000 Php. You will always save money by buying the larger bottle. You will save even more money if you can buy a bottle at a Duty Free shop, hehe. I had a discount coupon so this particular bottle of the Fresh variant cost me 3,600 Php, and I was rewarded with this pretty limited edition design, which Shu released to celebrate 50 years of the cleansing oil being on the market. :)

Ok moving on to why I use this and why I thought it was absolutely worth repurchasing:

  • It removes my makeup effectively — While Shu Uemura recommends 3-4 pumps per use, I tend to use 2 full pumps and that works well enough at removing everyday makeup. I does not work on waterproof mascara, but I don’t use that very often anyway. I should also mention that I will often use another cleanser (raw honey) after this. Just for extra moisture and a more thorough clean.
  • It leaves my skin feeling balanced — the number one mistake people with combo/oily skin make is to strip their skin of oil to the point that it eventually goes into hyperdrive trying to compensate. That only means more oiliness, people. The goal should be to create a balance, and that’s why using good oil to remove and replace “bad oil” (i.e. dirt and excess sebum) makes a lot of sense.
  • I trust Shu Uemura — I have Asian skin and Shu Uemura is an Asian brand. It’s also my first (brand) love when it comes to makeup. I love their aesthetic and I love their approach to beauty. I won’t deny it: I’m a little biased. But I promise I would never use something unless it really worked for me.
  • It lasts ages — I’m sure I could have stretched out my first bottle to 10 months of use, but there was a time when I did use more that two pumps a day. I was figuring out what worked for me and that made me a little wasteful. But two pumps does the job very well and that means I definitely get my money’s worth with this product in the long run.
  • The range is extensive — I use the Fresh variant because it’s meant for combo/oily skin. When I’m older (or if I fancy a bit of a change) there will be other variants to suit my needs/satisfy my whims. I’ve had a sample of the anti-oxi variant which I loved (an anti-pollution formula with Moringa extract in it) and the ultim8 Sublime variant looks absolutely luxe!

SUCO3Here’s a close-up of the adorable limited edition design. The cleansing oil was originally called “Unmask” hence the… uhm mask. Hehe. I personally like that it’s now very simply called the Shu Uemura cleansing oil. :)

So there you have it! If you’re not yet familiar with how to use a cleansing oil, check out this video prepared by Shu Uemura. Whenever I watch it, all I can think of is how cool it would be to have a Shu Uemura towel. Hehe!

 

My 5 Favourite Lip Glosses!

Hi guys! HAPPY HALLOWEEN! :) I don’t really get into it as a holiday, but if you’re Trick or Treat-ing, good for you! Candy was always the best part of Halloween for me. Then you get too old for it and you only use it as an excuse to dress all slutty (Mean Girls!) — we all had that phase… right? Lol, I was once a slutty soldier. I cringe! Anyway, I don’t have a Halloween-themed post for today or anything, but I’m working on uploading my October favourites video at the moment. It’s taking much longer than expected, so I decided to go ahead and let this post loose first. :) MFLG1Meet my five favourite lip glosses! :) I discovered the wonders of a good gloss late in my “makeup life” because I thought that all glosses were glassy, tacky, hair traps. They were just messy things I couldn’t be bothered with. Then I had the chance to try a mini lip gloss from Urban Decay (the one that comes with the NAKED 2 palette) and my mind was blown! It was the perfect texture, comfortable on the lips, manageable when it came to trapping hair, and it smelled of mint (love!). That gloss would undoubtedly be a part of my favourites now if I still had it. Sucks that UD is not available here, but I will definitely buy a full size one day! For now though, these lippies are keeping me quite happy:

1. VMV Hypoallergenics Lip Gloss in Coquette Rosette (1,000 Php) – This lip gloss is more like a liquid lipstick. It’s completely opaque. I use it alone most of the time because it makes little difference if I wear it over a lipstick. You do have to be careful about rubbing your lips when this is on because it kind of balls up when you do that, but if you don’t have that habit, this will wear for ages!

2. MAC Cremesheen Glass in Colour Saturation (2, 450.00 Php for a set of 4) – I only have three MAC glosses and they’re all from the set I got last Christmas (gave one away). This cremesheen glass is my favourite because the colour is a beautiful purple/plum with a hint of pink in it. The name Colour Saturation is apt. You do get a punch of purple from this and you can wear it both alone or layered over a lipstick to alter the shade. On its own it’s not quite opaque but it’s definitely not sheer either. Your lips will show through the veil of shiny purpleness in the prettiest way! This spreads evenly and wears for around 3 hours without eating or drinking. Smells of vanilla just like MAC lipsticks, but it has faded over time.

3. Bobbi Brown Lip Gloss in Rose Sugar 3 (approx. 1,300.00 Php) – This is the lip gloss that I can wear over top of my MLBB lipsticks without altering the colour too much. It just adds a shine that really lasts. This is the only gloss that has lasted on my lips for an entire day out (approx. 6 hours?), keeping its shine and just resting really comfortably on my lips. Smells of cookies!

4. Stila Lip Glaze in Sugar Plum (approx. 1,300 for Christmas set of 8 / 800Php individually) – The only one in the bunch with a brush applicator! This one works like a click pen. You twist the end opposite the brush to dispense product and then just swish it on with the brush. You don’t get too much product, but the way it’s pushed out means there isn’t any going to waste, whereas when you have gloss in a tube, you can’t always get everything. Still, 0.05 oz is very little product. Buy these in Christmas sets and save yourself from spending the full price!

5. Mini Shu Uemura Gloss Unlimited in PK 70 C (700.00Php for a set of 2 travel sized minis) – Got this one off Taste Central thinking it was a set of two big ones. Oops! Oh well, it’s a cute size and it was my own fault for not checking. I love the formula of this though! Very smooth and not tacky at all. Because of the milky pink colour, I use this when I want to lighten a lip stick or make it more like a pastel.

To see swatches and close-ups of the applicators, click on through! :) 

Continue Reading

FOTD – Sept. 17, 2013

FOTD091613.jpg

I don’t post looks very often because I feel like I’m awful at capturing the colours well. I also sometimes think that I look the same in all of the pictures… but I guess you can see the difference when they’re placed side by side! Here’s what I had on today yesterday. I reviewed a lot of these products recently, actually. The Clinique CC cream review should be up in a few days so watch out for that! :)

Base: Clinique CC Cream mixed with Vichy Normaderm Teint, MUD Blue Corrector #3, K Palette Zero Kuma Concealer, Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer, and Clinique Stay-Matte Pressed powder (translucent) with UD De-Slick sprayed over top to set

Cheeks: MAC Small Vanity blush

Eyes: L’Oreal Infallible Eyeshadow in Amber Rush on the lids, MAC Espresso on the outer-V and on the lower outer lash line, Inglot shimmery pink on the inner corner, Fairyfrops Platinum mascara (waterproof variant), and Shu Uemura Hard 9 Eyebrow pencil in seal brown

Lips: Too Faced La Creme lipstick in Spice Spice Baby

P.S. You can click on the photo to enlarge it! 

August Favourites 2013

AugustFaves2August this year was all sorts of awesome. It’s both Greg’s birth month and our “anniversary” month so we always have a lot of reason to celebrate, but this year it was especially great for multitude of reasons. :) Makeup-wise it was a very simple. I went for very clean and soft looks with emphasis on the skin and lips. And when I say emphasis on the lips I don’t mean bold colours, I mean lipgloss for that plump and full effect. I’ve only got three things to show you because… well, I only have three favourites. Simple as that I suppose! :)

1. Guerlain Meteorites Illuminating Powder (Teint Beige 02) My Meteorites seem to hibernate during the summer and come out towards what people in the West experience as “fall.” We don’t get that over here, but it is getting a little bit cooler now (thank goodness) and I love the extra glow that Meteorites provide. I use this brushed very lightly all over my face and I swear it makes me look like I’ve been airbrushed. It’s soft and natural and just using the product is a luxurious experience in itself. The tin is exquisite, the multicoloured pastel pearls smell of jasmine, and they sort of jiggle around softly when I swirl a brush into them… the powder kicks up a bit and you can see the shimmery bits (which never translate badly onto the skin)… ahh, what a lush product. Eyeing a pressed compact version for my next splurge. Either that or another eyeshadow palette! I love me some Guerlain.

2. Shu Uemura Mini Gloss Unlimited Lip Duo set

Continue Reading

Rave Review: Shu Uemura Hard 9 Eyebrow Pencil (seal brown 02)

SH9-1Meet the Shu Uemura Hard 9 Eyebrow pencil (1,400.00 Php). This baby is in a league of its own in the eyebrow pencil world and I don’t think it gets half as much time in the spotlight as it deserves. It’s actually one of the top 5 best-selling Shu Uemura products of all time, so it does have a following but I don’t hear too many people talk about it. In the reviews I have seen though, I hear nothing but praises, which this thing totally deserves. 

Continue Reading

Adorable teaser video!

Mon Shu girl is Karl Lagerfeld’s adorable character creation for his collab with Shu Uemura (coming out for the holidays)! I can’t wait for this! 

My UNII Palette

A couple of months ago I ordered a UNII palette from the US and it has proved to be extremely useful. The UNII palette is essentially a customizable make-up palette, much like the Z Palette except that the UNII palette is made of a sturdy plastic instead of cardboard.

Here she is! I ordered mine in Pomegranate because the black and white were out of stock and it was the closest to red they had. I actually like the color much more than I expected. The palette feels sturdy and is really pretty, too. It’s certainly much better than some original packaging out there, and it makes a lot of sense to be able to have shadows/powders from different brands together in one place.

The palette is a good size (approximately 3 x 6 inches) and it includes a full mirror, a metal plate, a rubber gripper, and a strip of adhesive-magnets (for the bottoms of your refill pans). UNII cosmetics has since come out with a new design which does not have a metal plate and magnet strip. Instead it has the magnet inside the palette and the rubber gasket which you can see on my UNII is no longer removable. A minor change is that the rubber gripper is much cuter in the new palette. A not-so minor change is that the colors available are now much cuter! You can check those out at their website: http://uniicosmetics.com. But for now, let me show you what I did with mine!

These are the shadows that I chose to place in my UNII palette. It’s obviously a neutrals palette, but with this combination I can make both a natural day look and a heavier evening look if I want to. That space below the bottom row of shadows can fit (and it usually does hold) an eyeliner. With that, I’m all set. This has travelled me once and it definitely beats bringing many single shadows or one pre-made palette that may limit you to a certain look. I prefer this even to my Urban Decay NAKED palette, which only makes sense, because these shades are tried and tested by me for use on me. The shadows/powders are namely:

Top Row: Dior random powder – The Balm “Devilish Danielle” – The Balm “Mischievous Marissa” – The Balm “Insane Jane”

Bottom Row: Shu Uemura M 851: “Soft Brown” – Shu Uemura M 860 “BXH2271” – Shu Uemura Bronze – Shu Uemura IR 900Y “BXH 1408” – Laura Mercier “American Coffee” 

The Dior powder is a general highlighter. The theBalm shadows are my favorites from my “Shady Lady” palette (yes, I ripped them out)– Mischievous Marissa gives me a lovely, peachy glow and Insane Jane just makes my eyes pop. The Shu matte soft brown is my perfect lid shadow, while the deep brown to its right is the most amazing brown I have ever come across. I usually use that in the crease of my eye and I only need the tiniest bit to create the most dramatic effect… combined with that bronze, the effect is just amazing. For everyday looks, I use the LM American Coffee on my crease. Also, notice how the Shu shadow on the far left of the bottom row is slightly thinner than the others? Shu Uemura has started producing their shadows in Korea instead of Japan (I was thinking maybe the factory was affected by the recent natural disaster?) and has downsized their eyeshadows. It isn’t very obvious when you buy the single eyeshadows in their new packaging, but it’s definitely noticeable when you place the pans side by side. I only have two that are very recently purchased and I haven’t noticed any compromise in quality which is great, of course, but the downsize is definitely a bummer. Anyway, the other two shadows that I haven’t mentioned (Devilish Danielle and the Shu Gold) are highlighters for me. They are amazing just like all the other shadows in my UNII.

Putting my palette together was a ton of fun, which I did expect since I love my make-up (hehe). One down side to the UNII might be removing single shadows from their already beautiful original containers. In this case though, there wasn’t any particular casing that I really wanted to hold on to. It’s a good way to customize to your own needs, as make-up really is something as personal as jewelry– only you really know what you like best. I might want another UNII palette in the future for powders or even a collection of brighter eye shadows, but I’m still not too sure. For now, I’m perfectly happy with the one UNII that I own and have come to love.

Again, you can check out UNII cosmetics here and have a look at that adorable honeysuckle palette! They’re now going for 26 USD (usually 29) which is a holiday price, I think.


No more posts.