Saturday, January 30, 2010

WOW: Stila Ulta Mate Set

I just got my Stila Ulta Mate Set and I gotta tell you, this is such a steal! I initially wanted to get this because I loved the eyeshadows in the Stila Barbie All Dolled Up Palette. I never expected that I would also fall in love with the Convertible and Lip Glaze.

Here’s a glimpse of these eye candies! 

And you know what the best part of this is? All these cost less than Php 1,000. 

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sally Hansen in Wild Life

Last October, I went through a blush phase. During that time, I was able to buy at least 3 Nars blushes a month until November. In December, pressed powder and pressed foundies were my thang. This explains why you saw brands like VMV, T.LeClerc, etc. in that month's haul. This month, I think I’m going to forget about everything else and haul nail polishes like crazy.

Blame it on the nail polish I recently acquired last month and my Nail Polish of the Week (NPOTW). Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Extreme Wear in Wild Life is LOVE! Such a gorgeous color. I am not very good at describing colors but I would have to say this is a mix of fuchsia and purple. I am so liking this bold and striking color as I think it made my hands look fairer. I also find the color very unique as I have not seen this shade or something similar to it elsewhere. I am also loving the fact that I feel my nails can still breathe despite the NP applied on them.
I only had it yesterday so I am going to check if it would stay put for at least a week as the brand harped lol. It seems appropriate too as I get too busy during weekdays that I don’t think I would have time to change my nail polish. If it chips during the middle of the week, I would have to remove them all nalang. I don’t like looking at chipped nail polishes. I’m going to try the AMA polishes next as these were highly recommended by Sis Martha.

Note to Self: I should make it a point to grow my nails since I realized that nail polishes look so much better if the wearer’s fingernails are longer.

I confess I am not very good at applying nail polishes. I suck at it. I tried to last week and did a very rotten job. The only thing that I successfully did was waste NP, acetone and cotton balls. I rely on our resident manicurist for great-looking digits since she comes to our house every other weekend. But I know I would have to learn to apply NP myself if I want to be able to change nail polishes anytime I want to. So for now, I would have to stalk the blogs of Nikki and Thiamere, and drool and be amazed (and envious lol!) about how good they are with nail polish application.

So, any recos on what Nail Polish I should get next?
P.S. Now I understand why some girls would spend Php 450-650 for a bottle of OPI, China Glaze, or Orly NP. Superior din talaga quality nila over Caronia and other local brands (no offense meant!) if SH was an indication. This is under the assumption that those are better than Sally Hansen (which truly impressed me!) as many nail polish gurus claim.


Monday, January 25, 2010

Zoom In On: Nars Blush in Matahari

Matahari is my first matte blush from Nars. I remembered falling in love with a pic of this gorgeous blush when I read about sis Aileen’s Nars blush collection. When I saw this sold through, I immediately placed a bid on it. I was initially reluctant to buy this because matte blushes are very easy to dupe IMO. Moreover, local companies like Ever Bilena, SanSan, and Fanny Serrano are now stepping up and have come up with better powder blushes that are comparable to imported brands. To date, I don’t have any other matte Nars blush. I am planning to buy one though next month. If you have to know, I have set my heart on getting Desire soon.
On to my review of Matahari. This shade is described by Nars in their website as a rose petal pink shade.I have to admit that this is my least-used Nars blush. In fact, I would even forget that I have this. I don’t know why but Matahari oxidizes on my cheeks after I have worn it for several hours. Particularly in the afternoons, this would turn into a purplish shade that would resemble a bruise-like color. Much to my dismay, this no longer seems to flatter my predominantly yellow-toned complexion. Nevertheless, this has not discouraged me from getting more Nars blushes this year!


Sunday, January 24, 2010

Zoom In On: Nyx Eyeshadow Trio in Hippie Chic

Aside from their round lipsticks, beauty bloggers all over the world also rave about the eyeshadows of Nyx. In fact, Nyx and Milani are identified as two drugstores brands that have products that are comparable to high-end MAC. During one of my many trips to Cebu, I chanced upon Nyx in a local department store. I scored some lippies and the eyeshadow trio that time.

Since I have already reviewed the Nyx lippies, I will now be reviewing the eyeshadow trio in Hippie Chic that I got. This trio consists of a shimmer gold, green and light purple shades.

Here are my thoughts about this trio:
  • The three shades have a shimmery finish.
  • The texture of these e/s are creamy especially the shimmer gold. (Comparable to that of Stila if I may say.)
  • Uber pigmented. A single dab of an e/s brush would already pack in too much color.
  • Relatively long-lasting when used with an eyeshadow base or primer. I did not see any crease in my e/s for five hours when I wore this. ( But then again, I do not have uber oily eyelids which is the reason why I haven’t felt the need to buy UDPP until now.)
  • The packaging is nice. It houses a mirror and a dual-ended sponge eyeshadow applicator. It also features a clear window in its front casing like the ELF studio blushes which enables us to see the shades of e/s inside. This is a plus for me as it eliminates the need of having to open the palettes every time we look for a particular shade.
  • This is such a travel-friendly eyeshadow palette.
  • Affordable. Got this at Php 250 only.
While I generally liked this, I am not able to use it as frequently as I wanted to since I prefer wearing neutral e/s to work or e/s with shades that are similar to any of our four official work uniforms.

So would I recommend this? Yes! Just make sure to choose the palette that includes shades that you would be able to wear regularly.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Zoom In On: Avon Soft Mousse Blush in Peach

I am usually iffy about using cream or mousse blushes for three reasons. One, I find them difficult to apply and blend nicely on my cheeks. Second, most of these beauties do not come with brushes or applicators as they can be applied using the fingers. This is something that I do not like doing since they usually leave my fingers stained. Third, they expire earlier than the powder-based versions.

I decided to give mousse blushes a chance when I read about the many raves in GT about the Soft Mousse Blushes of Avon. Since they cost less than Php 300, I thought it was rather harmless to try it.

I got the two shades of the mousse blush. These were Apricot Flush and Peach. The first one, according to my research, is more suitable for morenas while the other looks better in people with fair or light complexions. I retained the latter and gave the AF to a friend who I thought would look great with it.

Here are the rest of my thoughts about it:

Thumbs UP:
Ø Pigmented – One or two swipes of the Peach Mousse Blush would show up on my cheeks already. Great for those days when you don’t want to look too made up.

Ø Staying Power is Great – As consistent with this type of blush, it stayed put for hours.

Ø Makes a Good Base for Powder Blushes – I have tried using this as base for some of my powder blushes and it made the shades more vibrant and long-staying.

Ø Affordable – Cheap plus you get so much product for its price. I have had this for almost a year now and I still am not halfway through this item’s contents.

Ø Does Not Stain – With application of fingers, I noticed that this does not stain especially if it is no longer new and it has lost a little of its mousse consistency. Though it leaves discoloration on one’s fingers, it can be easily wiped off using a hanky or wet tissue.

Thumbs DOWN:

Ø Don’t like the packaging. – It is quite heavy since it is contained in a glass container. The mouth of the container is also rather small which I imagine would be inconvenient for those with large fingers. The same is also a problem if one decides to use a brush as it can be very difficult to dip the latter to pick up any product.

Ø Smell – The smell, for me, reminds me of the smell of a thinner which I used back in HS when I had to make some art projects.

Ø Dries Out – The mousse seems to have dried up a bit after some months have lapsed.

Ø Unhygienic – Since we have to dip in our finger or brush to get any product, this can be easily contaminated with bacteria especially if we don’t make it a point to wash our hands before applying makeup or if we don’t regularly wash our brushes. It is precisely for this reason that I don’t include this in my kikay kit as I don’t like using this outside of my house.

So would I buy this again? I don’t think so since I don’t get to use this much. I am more comfortable using my powder blushes.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Walking Around with a Heavy Heart

My work allows me to constantly interact with young people. This is one of the things that I love about my job. They make me feel younger than I truly am. I always feel this positive vibe that emanates from them whenever they surround me. And, words would never be enough to express how honored I feel whenever they would look at me as if I am the smartest person around. I  now understand why my colleagues would say that the classroom provides them refuge since it is indeed one of those places where we truly feel that we are doing something right.

Last week, I received the tragic news that a former student got into a vehicular student. He sustained head injuries so severe that he had to be airlifted to Cebu. He is now in a comatose state. Luckily, he is a scion of one of the most affluent families in the city so they have access to the best medical care. Despite this, the family had been informed by the doctors that even if he would recover, he would be left with permanent damage to his physio-neurological skills. I felt EXTREMELY sad when I heard this. In fact, I even had to take a seat while the news was relayed to me. That time it seemed as if  energy was zapped out of my body.  Memories of him talking to me last year flashed in my mind. I remember seriously threatening him that I'd drop him in my class due to his absences and he would retort by telling me sob stories (a common modus unfortunately). He constantly pestered me for consideration and would follow me around school pleading his case and so I ultimately gave in. In the following semesters, he would always greet me boisterously in the hallway and though I would get embarrassed, such incidents make me laugh.

I pray to God that he would recover. For his sake and for his family. And I swear I will help in whatever way I can to help bring back again that young lad who somehow touched my life.

Xmas ’09 Haulage

This post is kinda late but still, I am writing this as I want to share with you these blessings I got last Christmas. I am looking forward to being able to use and appreciate all of these beautiful things. Reviews of the individual items shall be made and will be posted in this blog.

Ama (Korean Brand) Nail Polishes
Benefit Silky Finish Lipstick in My Treat

VMV Hypoallergenics Skin Alchemy Concealer-Foundation in Warm Toddy
Revlon Nail Polish in Totally Toffee
Sally Hansen Nail Polish in Wild Life
Freebie: MMU e/s samples

T. LeClerc Pressed Powder in Ivoire
Avon Ideal Shade Dual Powder Foundation

MAC Mineralize Skin Finish in Redhead
Note: I only purchased one item but the seller was EXTREMELY generous as she included so many freebies in the package among which are a facial mask, MMU blush, MMU e/s, sample of Skin Food Lime Secret Base, sample of Kryolan Anti-Shine Powder and mini Makeup For Ever (MUFE) Aqua Eyes pencil.

Perhaps the most special of the stuff I acquired last Xmas would be this lot as I got this from a dear dear high school friend who I haven’t kept in touch for the longest time. FYI, she worked in Cannes, France before she came home and she even got to see the ultimate hunk in the world, BRAD PITT (what a lucky girl!). Christine was one of those people in HS who I really became fond of. I even remember exchanging snail mails (SMS was so not in the picture that time) with her every summer and we had this notebook/slambook which we alternately update lol. Reconnecting with her was certainly one of the best things that happened to me last Christmas. And hey she even gave me a MAC lipstick which, from my own research, is already very hard to come by nowadays, “Hotscotch”. The Clinique freebies are also very much appreciated since I’ve always wanted to try their stuff. SO HAPPY!

MAC Paint Pot in Perky
MAC Lipstick in Solar Plum

Not included here would be the Stila Ulta Mate Set which I purchased and the Nars blushes I got from my aunt. Will post them soon. 

Thanks chicas! 

Friday, January 8, 2010

Zoom In On: Cargo Blush in Louisiana

I became a "Cargo" fan ever since I laid eyes on Catalina. This fascination with the brand led me to buy another blush, this time with a shimmery finish. When I found an online seller who sold Cargo Lousiana I did not pass up the chance.

Here are the reasons why I like it":
> I LOVE the soft rosy pink shade.
> I like the sheen that it lends the cheeks as it lends a glow that seems to be lit from within.
> Pigmented and long-lasting.
> In general, the tin containers of Cargo items are so so adorable.
 ( it looks orangey on this swatch, but it really is a lovely soft pink shade on the cheeks)

What I don't like?
> Not available locally. (if only it is, I would have bought almost all their blush shades)
> Cargo blushes are so pricey especially when bought through pre-orders. More expensive than Nars blushes huhu Que horror! 

Ciao chicas!

Happy New Hair!

I had always wanted to have my hair rebonded. The thing was three years ago, one would cost us an arm and a leg. Now, perhaps due to heavy competition, it is no longer as financially prohibitive as it used to be. I wanted so badly to have my hair rebonded because my hair is naturally wavy and since my hair is shoulder-length, it tended to fly away. The frizzy appearance is another problem altogether. I wanted to have it rebonded last year but the salon attendant advised me to wait till my hair would grow past my nape.

Last Saturday, I went to Cebu to spend the weekend with The BF. Fortunately, he had the entire weekend off from internship duty (he’s a 4th year Med student in Cebu Doctors) so at least we had time spent with each other before our lives return to normalcy. Aside from our couple time, I made sure that I fulfill one of the things that I had long wanted done, get a hair rebond. NOW, I am really really happy with my crowning glory.
lol nakakaloka ang background... the grocery was a floor below 
the salon and i had to buy some snack items to take for my return trip. 
the first ever pic of my new hair.

Thanks ladies!
Care to suggest a hair care regimen that would be appropriate for rebonded hair?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Zoom In On: NARS in Super Orgasm

Happy 2010 ladies!
For my opening salvo of the year, I am reviewing one of the Nars blushes I purchased in 2009. The past year had been so busy that I have been neglectful in regularly posting entries.

I got the Nars Super Orgasm because I wanted to see for myself how it fares against its sister, Orgasm (which also happens to be my Holy Grail Peachy Pink blush). Moreover, I also was motivated by positive reviews of some beauty bloggers who liked it better than its predecessor. In fact, many consider it as the Orgasm for those with darker skin tone.
This review will not dwell on the general characteristics of Nars blushes since I already reviewed two other shades namely: Orgasm and Taos. So I will no longer be talking about the packaging or the price of this baby. This entry will focus more on the shade and all other things that make SO distinct from the others.

On sight, I liked what I saw. In my eyes, its shade seems to be pinker than O, which is not actually a disadvantage for me. I was kinda intimidated by the glitters though. The pics I took will show you that the glitters in SO are in fact chunkier than O. These are very easy to shake off though. Simply tap your stippling or blush brush off if you don’t want most of those glitters on your cheeks.

Honestly, I could say that SO looks more flattering on me than O. However, I do not get to use it as often as O because those glitters really make me hesitant to wear them during daytime. I’m afraid that whoever I will be talking to at work would be distracted by the glittery chunks plastered on my face lol. IMO, it is the perfect blush to wear on a night out with friends or on a date with your special someones.

 In addition, you might also want to be more careful with your brush with SO because it seems to be a little more crumbly than all the other Nars blushes I have tried. I mean, the powder does not seem to be compactly packed on the case so expect many powder fall-outs when you dip your blush brush on this. The chunky glitters of this blush can also be a pain in the a** as it sticks to the rubberized packaging and can be a challenge to remove. In terms of pigmentation and staying power, I give this blush (and all Nars blushes it seems) my two thumbs up.