Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Strawberry Sponge Curlers!

So recently, me and my friend, Helen, saw these adorable strawberry sponge curlers on Dream High 2 and we thought we just had to have them! 
They come in a pack of 6 and I found mine on Bornprettystore for $4.08 with free shipping. The shipping was relatively fast considering it was sent from overseas. 
I learned to use them from the lovely Miss Chickachew. You can see her tutorial here :) Overall, the sponges worked alright. The quality of the sponges is not great but does its job. They are soft and easy to work with. It wasn't a perfect curl for me and both me and my friend had problems with it being caught in our hair. She has thick hair and I have thin hair. I wrapped rather thick strands of hair through them the first time I used it cause I only have 6, then went to sleep. In the morning when I went to take them out, the curls were pretty good and tight. By the afternoon, they started unraveling. The 2nd time I used thinner strands of hair and it got knotted in the strawberry. I had to pull and try very hard to get my hair out. I think with more experience and more rollers, my problem might be solved. This is a good way for me to do my hair overnight without any heating products though.
Of course I don't look as cute as Jiyeon, but I tried. The picture is a bit blurry cause I took it at home with my phone camera. Sorry!

Till next time :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

My Updated Skincare Routine - Mar. 2012

I haven't done one of these in a while so I wanted to add some products to my list. I'm still using the same face cleanser, toner and day lotion, which you can read about here. I've updated my night cream and added a serum. The Garnier gel cream is good for summer nights, but throughout the colder nights, I blast my heater. I've noticed my skin slowly becoming more dry and dull-looking and my combination skin was really losing its oil. To prevent it from becoming flaky and patchy, I switched to a heavier night cream.
I got a deluxe sample of Origins High Potency Night-A-Mins Mineral-Enriched Oil-Free Renewal Cream. They have a regular version of this cream which is thicker, however, I do still have oily skin so I chose the oil-free version. This cream has a very pleasant orange blossom scent. It contains vitamins C, E and H, minerals ansalicylic acid, which helps with removing dead skin cells and prevents blemishes. The other plus is it contains no parabens, petroleum, mineral oil, or animal ingredients. Origins is known for its organic and natural ingredients. 
It is thick and applies a bit heavy. For the first few seconds, you're face will feel very oily. This might be uncomfortable for some of you, but it definitely goes away. Once the product is thoroughly absorbed into the skin, it feels lightweight and smoothI've been using this for 2 weeks now and I noticed that my skin is very supple and soft in the morning. I will be getting the full-size product.
The other product that I have been raving about is the Origins Dr. Weil Mega-Bright Correcting Serum. I briefly talked about this product here. It is a serum, even though the texture goes on like the Miracle Transformer, its a bit running in my hand and when I first apply it with my finger. A little product goes a long way. I've been using this for a week now and I must say, I see my skin clearing!! Not only does it make an immediate smooth complexion, it also makes my skin super soft. It lightens my scar marks and blemishes upon absorbing. It serves as an amazing primer also. Some days, I use less of my day lotion because its been getting hotter in Orlando lately, but with this serum my skin has been completely fine. No dryness and less oil, letting my skin look matte without the use of any foundation or powder. I will definitely be getting the full-size product of this. It truly works well!
I used the serum as a base and added thin coat of Missha BB Cream in No.23, applied Maybelline Dream Bouncy in Hot Tamale and Etude House V-Line Powder to my cheeks and Revlon Lip Butter in Cherry Tart to my lips. My makeup was light and comfortable, but all my imperfections were still covered because they have naturally gotten lighter.

Till next time :)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring Cleaning Part #1 and SALE

Now that spring has officially started, I decided to do some closet cleaning! I started with my mother's closet back at home. She has soooooo many hidden goodies she collected recently. A lot of these she won't have time to use in the upcoming year so I took A LOT of stuff back with me.
 I have gifts from Shiseido, Lancome and Estee Lauder. As I sort through them, I will post some items on my blog for sale. Please let me know if you would like to purchase anything. This is my first time doing any sort of blog sale so please be kind! These are all new full size products and makeup bags, never used or only swatched to show you the color. So please leave a message in the comments and let me know if you're interested!! All prices are flexible! 
Here are two very lovely lipsticks. One is Lancome L'Absolu Rouge Replenishing Lipcolor in Luxe Mahogany and one is Clinique Different Lipstick in Tenderheart.
The Lancome color is a deep red and the Clinique is a sheer nude. They both go on very smooth and pigmented. These swatches were just from one time.
I believe they have new cases and looks a lot more modern now, however, the product and ingredients are still the same. Here's what Lancome and Clinique look like now. I will sell them for $15 and $10 :)
This is the Lancome Color Design Sensational Effects Eye Shadow Quad Smooth Hold palette. I don't think they make this exact palette anymore but the colors are still available in single shadows.
This is unused and unswatched. Normally they are $43 with applicators. I will sell this one for $20 without applicator. It is an older container, but the inside is brand new and the colors are still very pretty. I've used Lancome shadows before and they go on pigmented and silky. Very nice for a light touch to spring colors :)

On a side note: My 3rd JewelMint purchase came in!!
Till next time :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Post-Acne Scars, Oh No!

Back in high school, I use to break out a lot on my face and on my back. If the people who know me now saw pictures from back then, I don't even know if they'd even recognize me. Before I really understood how important beauty is to a woman, I picked at my scabs, popped pimples, the whole ordeal. Now I totally regret it, but its too late. The scars are already there. Overtime, some of them have slowly faded. However, some of my darker ones are still haunting me. So I decided to try some spot treatment serums. These serums are a bit pricey so I asked for samples first. 
The first one I got a sample of was Origins Dr. Weil Mega-Bright Correcting Serum. It's very lightweight and applies very smooth onto my skin. Right after applying it, I noticed my skin tone looking more even. The texture looks dewy yet velvety. It absorbs very fast, even though it goes on feeling a bit thick. The key ingredient in this serum is Rosa Buxburghii, a flower found in Asia. The fruit from this rose contains vitamins A,C,E and fatty acids that help with discoloration of the skin. I've only used it for 2 days so I'm not sure how well the results will be, but I will update again if I buy the full-size product.
 It is a light-green tinted milky serum.  
The 2nd serum I got with a bonus gift from Shiseido. It is their White Lucent Intensive Spot Targeting Serum. I normally would not buy anything from this product line because I don't like using whitening products. I am naturally tan and prefer to be more on the dark side :P But this serum doesn't really whiten my skin, it just lightens my spots. It makes my overall skin tone look brighter and more silky. It is more lightweight than the Origins serum and goes on almost like creamy water. I really like how it absorbs after I use Shiseido Balancing Softener. It makes my skin feel super soft afterward my routine.
This serum is pearlescent and milky.
The last sample I got doesn't do much for my post-acne scars, but it seems to be helping my dark under-eye circles. It is the Origins GinZing eye cream. There is caffeine in this to make your eyes look more awake and alive. So far, its been pretty good. It goes on relatively light, even though the texture of the cream is pretty oily. I've only used it for 2 days so I will update in detail if I buy the full size.

Till next time :)

Friday, March 16, 2012

Beauty Secret #4: Oatmeal

I started getting bored with my smoothies recently so I decided to take a break and try something else for breakfast, oatmeal! I buy the 1-minute Quaker Oats to save time. It's bland but I add a bit of cinnamon sugar and honey to kick up the taste. There's actually a lot of good health benefits to this simple bowl of mush. 

Here's some quick facts about oatmeal:

1. Low calorie food: A cup is only 130 calories!  It also stays in your stomach longer, making you feel full longer. 

2. Lose weight through hunger controlYou will have less hunger and cravings.The soluble fiber in oatmeal absorbs a considerable amount of water which significantly slows down your digestive process. This result is that you'll feel full longer, i.e. oatmeal can help you control your weight.

3. Lowers cholesterol and good for your heart: Contacts beta-glucan which reduces bad cholesterol and risk of heart disease. It also contains special antioxidants called avenanthramides that prevent free radicals from attacking good cholesterol. These ingredients also boost your immune system.

4. Provides high levels of fiber and protein: Oatmeal is so rich in fiber, eating it in the morning will also help stabilize your blood sugar throughout the day. This is good for people who have diabetes. Also for people who want to prevent mid-morning or afternoon energy crashes, have a small cup of cereal nearby.

5. It is gluten-free: If you are gluten intolerant, you can happily enjoy oatmeal, but oats could potentially contain gluten from nearby fields. Proceed with caution!

6. Helps acne: Use leftover, cooled down oatmeal and spread it over your acne. Let it sit for around 15 minutes and rinse off. This will help absorb oil and exfoliate dead skin cells. You can add honey or tea tree oil for added help.

7. Better skin in general: Besides acne, you can turn oatmeal into a scrub by mixing it with some baking soda and water. Spread and gently rub onto a moist face. (If you have sensitive or allergic skin types, try on a small patch of skin first) For a mask, mix 1/2 cup hot water with 1/3 cup oatmeal for two or three minutes, then add two tablespoons each plain yogurt and honey, plus one egg white. Spread thinly on the face, then relax for 10 minutes and rinse with warm water.

Till next time :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Mailbox Post #1

I get a lot of samples and packages in the mail so I will post my weekly's on this blog. This week in the mail I got 2 packages :) One was from Julep and the other was from Amazon. 
Try Julep maven for ONE PENNY this month!! Here's the link to join: I got my 2 polishes, nail file and hand scrub :)
I also got my Wonder Pore Freshner from SeoulGlamour on Amazon
  Their shipping was pretty fast coming from Korea and my order came with 3 samples :) I've read many reviews on this toner. It comes with a 7-in-1 promise and is suppose to be miraculous. I will do an in-depth post once I try it out a few weeks.
Till next time :)

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Versatile Blogger Award!!

It's been 3 months since I started this blog and I am slowly gaining more readers. It makes me so happy that there are people out there I can share my thoughts and advice with. It makes me even happier to receive this Versatile Blogger award from one of my readers, the lovely and sweet Jen :)

Here are the Rules:
1. Thank the blogger who awarded you and add a link to their blog in your post.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Share the award with other 15 blogs that you love and inform them :) 

~7 Random Things About Myself~
1. I use to have really bad acne in high school, all the way to freshman year of college.

2. Even though I have gotten a lot better, I still lack in self-esteem and confidence.

3. I want to start my own business one day and help girls learn about beauty.

4. I love food and sometimes I can't help but splurge on expensive cuisine.

5. I was raised by my mother and grandmother. They are my role models.

6. I can't swim, but I love the water and scuba diving.

7. I have 2 pairs of piercings on my ear lobes and one cartilage piercing on my right ear. 

I'd like to present this award to the following bloggers :)

Monday, March 12, 2012

Spring Lookbook: H&M, Arden B., F21 and VS Haul

Last week, I did a H&M, Arden B. Forever 21 and Victoria's Secret haul! I rarely do hauls because honestly, my piggy bank cannot afford it but this time I splurged for my mom so I figured why not buy some stuff for myself too?! I wanted to get some bright colors and I love the new coral trend. Also, I find the bold blazers over a white or black top so gorgeous for spring. Originally I wanted to do a video for this post, but my camera is not very good so pictures it is!

~My Spring Lookbook~
 Forever 21 Blazer: $29.95
Arden B. White Capri Pants: $59.99

H&M Coral Blazer: $29.95
H&M Coral Collared Dress: $29.95

Arden B. Striped Crop Top: $10.99
H&M Striped Tee: $5.95
Victoria's Secret 5 for $25 Panties

I will post more OOTD pictures as I wear these outfits. For now, here are my Indian Escape earrings from JewelMint in action!
Till next time :)

Friday, March 9, 2012

Lancome Products and GWP

I was browsing Nordstrom yesterday and I decided to try the highest reviewed Lancome Rouge in Love lipsticks. I tried a few colors and fell in love with 170N Sequence in Love
Its the color Emma Watson is wearing in their photo ad. Its a stunning, head-turning bright red color.
 It's highly pigmented. One coat will last the whole day. The texture is silky smooth. I used a lipgloss brush to apply from the sample lipstick and I could literally see the moisture as I pressed the brush against the stick. But the color stays on forever and ever! I put it on at 4pm, then went shopping, then drank out of a water bottle, then sampled teas, then went home and ate dinner, dabbed color on multiple napkins and washed my face. After all that, the color was still there even after the glossy effect was gone. It was almost like a lip stain. So if you want long-lasting color, this is definitely a good lipstick and worth the $25.
I also got a small sample of their Renergie Eye Multiple Action cream. This eye cream comes with a concealer on top and the cream on the bottom. My sample was just the cream. It is very moisturizing and creamy. The texture is thick and it goes on a bit too oily for my taste. The thickness does absorb quickly though. Its suppose to help lift and contour your eyes, fade dark circles, and erase wrinkles. It does illuminate my eyes right after applying it. I've only tried it twice so I will update again after a few days.

From now till March 18, 2012, Lancome is doing a pre-sale gift with purchase. With every $39.50 purchase, you get a gift bag with 7 deluxe items, worth $136!! Pretty awesome deal! Here's a list of what you can choose from.
Till next time :)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

OOTD #1: Neutrals and Feb. JewelMint

This is my first OOTD (Outfit of the day) post so I actually a bit nervous. I have never been a very fashionable person. Actually, in middle school I was a tomboy and solely wore pants and oversized tees. I'm sure many of my friends now would not have been friends with me back in the day. After I went to high school and began dating, I began to be more conscious of how I dress and started experimenting with makeup. Then after I went to college, I became highly interested in makeup and beauty products and here I am today. 
So this outfit was just a casual daytime look. I like a lot of neutrals so I wore a brown H&M tank top with a H&M cardigan and a brown belt. For pants, I just wore a dark blue pair of Hollister skinny jeans.
I found these beige wooden heels at TJ  Maxx and they're surprisingly comfortable because of the padded soles. They were only $30! 

My Feb. JewelMint pieces also came in the mail! I ordered the Indian Escape Earrings and got a gift with purchase.
They look long, but they're relatively light on the ears. The gold doesn't feel cheap and the design looks very classy. It has a fish hook top but it's long enough not to fall through without a backing.
This is the piece I got as a gift with purchase. It's a simple silver bracelet with a rose heart charm. Its very lightweight but not cheap looking. The clasp is a bit hard to open and its difficult to put on by yourself but after its on, its quite lovely. The diamonds in the circle pendant really shine under the light. I am overall satisfied with this gift! Also enter to win $1000 spending spree for JewelMint!!

Till next time :)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

I Got Tagged!!

I've been tagged by the lovely Sunnie :) I've never done a tag so this is very exciting!!
The goal is to answer 11 questions you were tagged with then create 11 new questions and tag 11 bloggers of my own. I will include some of my favorite bloggers at the end of this post but you don't have to feel pressured to answer! Just wanted to express my love for your blogs :) So here are the questions Sunnie asked:

1. What nail polish are you wearing now?
ZOYA Tanzy 
2. What’s your favorite blush?
Maybelline Dream Bouncy (for now)
3. What’s the most expensive beauty product you have?
My Clarsonic Mia
4. What’s your favorite mask?
My Beauty Diary Strawberry Yogurt
5. A random fact about yourself.
I can't tread water but I scuba dived to 70ft ocean floors
6. Sephora or MAC?
7. What magazine(s) do you read?
Self, InStyle, Glamour, Allure, Lucky, Shape
8. What’s your favorite perfume?
Juicy Couture 
9. What’s the best base coat you have ever used?
OPI Base Coat
10. What’s your favorite foundation?
I don't really wear foundation, just a pore refiner from Dr. Brandt
11. Where do you want to travel the most?

Now for my questions and tags :)
1. What is the best skincare advice you can give?
2. What are some staples in your current collection?
3. Favorite bronzer/contour powder?
4. Favorite nail polish brand and color?
5. What are 2 interesting facts about you that no one would believe?
6. If you could splurge on one item, what would it be?
7. Most comfortable pair of heels owned?
8. Where do you like to shop?
9. What inspired you to start a blog?
10. Who are your idols/inspirations?
11. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Just Like a Petal, QuestJen, Tina, Eki, Angel, Jessica, Rolala, Sooji, Kikay, Zoella, Rae, Squishy Monster<3

Monday, March 5, 2012

February Hits and Misses!

I watched Chanel's Spring 2012 Couture Show last night and it was so creative! The concept is airline stewardess styles with a sky-blue color theme and the runway looked like the inside of a plane. Now on to my Feb. Hits and Misses!!
Hit #1:
I bought this Oil-Free Control Cream when I did my THEFACESHOP haul in Jan. I started using it at the beginning of Feb. and within a month I have seen great results. Its a very lightweight cream. I started using it at night, but its a bit too light for the night time. The only thing I don't like about it for the day time is it has no SPF, so I will moisturize with this on days where I use makeup that already has SPF. Besides the SPF flaw, everything else about this cream is amazing! It really did lessen my oil and sebum. I wouldn't have to blot or use a powder until 3 or 4pm after applying it at 7am. It made my pores smaller and skin softer as well. It has a sweet scent but its barely noticeable. It does come in a thick glass jar so for people who don't like to use their finger, I suggest a small spoon or ladel. I have one from Shiseido and I use that to scoop it out onto my hand.

Hit #2:
This is a 7-day sample of the Lancome Genifique Youth Activating Concentrate I got a while ago and I didn't get a chance to try it till now. However, I have heard many people rave about the results so I decided to pull it out and give it a shot. It is a very expensive serum but it's suppose to be a miracle worker. Within the first 2 days, I saw results! I am very skeptical of these 'instant results' claims, but this product truly does work fast. The sample gives you 7 packets and promises that in 7 days, your skin will look more youthful. My skin is dewy and refined after the first 2 days, as if it really did go back in time. Each sample packet comes with a lot of serum and you don't need a lot to cover your entire face. Its a clear, lightweight formula. When it first glides on your skin, it might be a tiny bit sticky but once you pat it in, your skin is silky smooth. 

You can sign up for a free sample voucher on the Lancome website and pick it up at your local Lancome counter. It works so well I am tempted to buy the full size product, even though its at least $60. I never splurge on expensive department store serums, however, for this one, I might just break the piggy bank.

Hit #3 and Miss #1:
This Revlon Lip Butter in Cherry Tart was a hit and miss for me. I still love the balm formula and how well it moisturizes my lips, however, I feel because this particular color has small glitter particles in it, it dries up a lot faster than the other colors. It is a deep red-pink color and goes on pretty pigmented. The photo above from 2 swipes. I think it comes out very pretty in pictures but in person, it doesn't match my complexion too well. I shall see how much I like this color after a week. I think I might trade this in for Candy Apple, which doesn't have glitter and is more red vs pink. 

Miss #2:
This is a Christmas present I got from my lovely friend Helen. It is a BBW Wallflower in Mint Chocolate. I love this scent! It is actually my favorite from BBW and every Christmas I stock up on candles, scentportables, and hand soaps in this scent. However, I noticed that wallflowers are a bit overwhelming in a small room or area. I plugged it into my bathroom and I usually close the door when I leave the house. When I came home and went into the bathroom, it was like I entered a mint chocolate factory. I had to step out and breathe for a minute. I still love the scent but this diffuser is simply too powerful and concentrated. I would suggest plugging this in a big bedroom or living room. Its also unhealthy to breathe in to many concentrate chemicals and fumes, even if its fragrant. Too much of a room spray or air freshener could potentially cause cancer or sinus problems!

Miss #3:
These THEFACESHOP masks are great if you're face is slightly larger than the norm. I didn't like the sheet quality however. Compared to My Beauty Diary sheet masks, these were a lot thicker and harder to breathe through. The serum on the sheet itself works fine, but I didn't see a huge result the day after. The lemon mask tightened my skin a bit and the cucumber mask was very refreshing. The Q10 mask is suppose to make your skin more supple and young, but I didn't really see the instant result. Perhaps after using more, it might work. The rice mask had a very odd scent to it and made my skin itch after. So overall, these masks are a miss for me because it simply didn't fit my face and I didn't see much of a change after I used them.

On a side note:
This is the beauty blender giveaway I won from Sunnie. She was super sweet to send my my prize (Korres lip butter and lip glaze in Wild Rose plus a mascara and a Beauty Blender sponge) along with a bunch of samples. It was very fast shipping too. Her blog is very informative so stop by and check it out!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Beauty Secret #3: Swollen Eyes Cure

For a while now, I've noticed my double eyelids are looking thicker than normal. Then I realized they were swollen even though I wasn't crying at night, so I set out to find a cure. A good way to see if they're swollen is to close your eyes and gently use 2 fingers to pat over the eyelid. If you don't feel a crease between your brow bone and your eyeball or you can't tell where your eye socket is, most likely your eyes are swollen. Another way is to open your eyes and see how different your eyes look from after a good night's sleep. If there is more lid space than usual or your eyelid has tripled or folded under, those are all signs of eye swelling.

Some causes of swollen eyes can be too much salt intake, allergies, using irritating eye makeup or makeup remover, too much water before bed, using too much eye cream around the top of the eye, or not sleeping elevated enough on your pillow. Other causes can be stress, hormone changes, or fatigue.

Now some cures I've found that really helps the swelling go down:

  • Wash face with ice cold water (which is not my favorite but does wake me up in the morning)
  • Limit sodium intake (overall better for your health)
  • Drink plenty of water to clean out your system (but not within an hour of going to bed)
  • Place two slices of cool cucumber on the eyes for 4-5 minutes
  • Chill leftover green tea bags in the refrigerator, place them over closed eyelids for 3-4 minutes
  • For allergies causes, find out what the allergy is and try to stay away from rubbing your eyes after touching the cause or avoid being around it as much as possible
  • Try a soothing eye cream with aloe and Vitamin E and chilling it in the fridge before applying
The best thing I've tried is this gel eye mask I bought a while ago from The Body Shop. I just leave it in the fridge an hour before I sleep then take it out and lay it on my eyes right before I sleep. In the morning, my eyes swell a lot less. Sometimes I use it for 5 minutes in the morning too, right before I go to work.