Review: SkinFood Black Sugar Mask (Wash Off)

1.27.2011


Purchased at: I got this it in Korea but you can get it at Sasa or YesStyle

Price: $12.90 at Sasa or $17.00 YesStyle. Obviously, I have my preferences ;)

Description:
SKINFOOD Black Sugar Mask Wash Off contains black sugar ingredient, which contains rich minerals, vitamins and glycolic acid, for removing aged cuticles.  It ensures better absorption of the following skin care products. Skin is revitalized and hydrated. Bright and tight skin is resulted.
A leave-on mask with generous moisturizing and effective exfoliating ingredients. Grainy sugar granules slough off excess oil and grime, while a self-heating formula opens up pores, allowing skin to fully absorb the rich minerals and vitamins.
Directions: After cleansing, apply the mask to lightly wet face (avoid eye and lip area). Gently press and massage. Leave it for 10-15 minutes and then rinse well with water.


Suitable for: All skin types. (Though I don't agree, I think those with sensitive skin/acne shouldn't use it).


Experience: I tried a sample of this and it was a very generous amount, good for 3-4 uses, honestly.  I didn't like how large the sugar grains were, it felt too harsh on my face even though I didn't massage very much.  When I washed off the mask after minimal massaging (not scrubbing), my face felt very clean and there was no residue left.  However, I forgot to put on lotion once after I used it and my face felt very parched.  This isn't really surprising though since it is an exfoliating mask ^_^

Overall:
Scent: I thought this would have a sugary sweet scent but it was a lime-soap scent O_o More lime than soap so it smelled quite clean and I liked it - but it startled me a bit.

Texture: Very large sugar granules!  You should use a very small amount of this with plenty of water or another cleanser.   Those with open lesions or active acne shouldn't use this since it'll be harsh on your face I think.  And I have to add how utterly....feces-like this looks xD


Claims:
Contains rich minerals, vitamins and glycolic acid, for removing aged cuticles.  <-- aka remove dead skin? Well, yes it does though it definitely should considering how large the granules are xD
Skin is revitalized and hydrated. <-- Revitalized, yes.  Hydrated? Not so much though my freshly exfoliated face did soak up moisturizer faster.
Bright and tight skin is resulted. <-- Yes indeed-y.
Generous moisturizing and effective exfoliating ingredients. <-- Not so much on the moisturizing, yes to the exfoliating.  
Grainy sugar granules slough off excess oil and grime. <-- Yep.
Self-heating formula opens up pores, allowing skin to fully absorb the rich minerals and vitamins. <-- I did not experience any self-heating :\  The Skinfood Black Sesame Seed Hot Mask (which I really like btw) does this really well, this one not so much.
Overall results: This is a very well-loved mask (MUA Rating: 4.2/5.0), I have come across almost no negative reviews about this product.  As for me I have to say....I wasn't crazy about it ^^;;
Good:
- I liked the lime scent but it might be odd for those expecting something sweeter.
- Exfoliates decently enough.
- My skin felt very refreshed and revitalized afterward.
- No residue left behind, skin feels clean and tight.
- Very reasonable cost on Sasa.

Bad:
- No self-heating effect.
- Large (possibly harsh) granules. They don't melt over time either I don't think :\
- Not moisturizing.
- Tub setup is very unhygienic :P You'll need to use spoon to get this stuff out.
- Skin will be temporarily red afterward.
- Looks like poop in the tub ^0^ but on your face it's just fine :)
Overall, I'd say you could give it a try if you do not have active acne/open lesions on your face.  I personally would not purchase the full size of this - it's not because I think it's a bad product, it's just not for me.  Also I suspect you could get the same results with a DIY brown sugar mask ^^  I'll be sticking to my good ol' SkinJourney Microdermabrasion Scrub, which has much smaller/gentler exfoliating beads and is more moisturizing.

Review: My Beauty Diary Apple Polyphenol Mask

1.25.2011


Purchased at: Sasa

Price: $12.10/10 masks = $1.21/mask

Description:
My Beauty Diary Apple Polyphenol Mask tightens pores, refines and hydrates skin. 
Nano mild Hibiscus acid tightens pores: It is a mild Alpha Hydroxy Acid which removes cuticles to prevent and correct large pores. Oil Balancing mask helps tighten pores and improve skin texture, leaving skin fine and radiant. 
Hydrate skin and restore elasticity: Nanospheres and hyaluronic acid extracted by biological technology boost formation of collagen to restore skin’s elasticity.
Amazing Nanospheres Technology: Structured with plenty of tiny holes, it enhances absorption of nourishment, leaving skin moisturized.
Suitable for: It is ideal for all skin types, especially skin with visible pores.

Experience: Lovely tangy apple scent as soon as I open it.  Mask itself is fine and holds enough serum, though there isn't much serum left over for your neck.  The mask doesn't have a "cooling" effect that I often get with Silk Whitia masks but the serum dries without a residue.  My face always seems smoother, brighter, and more hydrated after use.   Supposedly, this mask has a mild exfoliating effect (must be the AHA) and skin certainly does seem smoother though I don't see anything "peeling" off necessarily.


Overall:
Fit: MBD masks fit me well, though they aren't as adjustable as FaceQ masks.

Scent: A crisp, tangy granny smith apple scent.  Very similar to the TonyMoly Appletox.

Texture: Quite thin and light. Much thinner than Silk Whitia and a hair thicker than FaceQ.

Excess serum: While the mask itself is always nicely soaked, I never get as much excess serum from MBD masks as I do from FaceQ and Silk Whitia masks. 

Claims:
Nano mild Hibiscus acid tightens pores: It is a mild Alpha Hydroxy Acid which removes cuticles to prevent and correct large pores. <-- Perhaps with long term use pores will get smaller permanently but it does temporarily reduce pore size at least.
Oil Balancing mask helps tighten pores and improve skin texture, leaving skin fine and radiant. <-- Definitely leaves my skin looking quite radiant. 
Hydrate skin and restore elasticity: Nanospheres and hyaluronic acid extracted by biological technology boost formation of collagen to restore skin’s elasticity.  <-- My skin does seem temporarily "bouncier" and fuller but I am not sure of long term elasticity improvement.
Amazing Nanospheres Technology: Structured with plenty of tiny holes, it enhances absorption of nourishment, leaving skin moisturized. <-- I like how this mask leaves my skin moisturized without the slight oily sheen.
Overall results: I would definitely say this is my favorite sheet mask among all the ones I've tried/reviewed so far.  It has all the traits I'm looking for in a mask: effective, yet gentle, smells great, serum dries without residue, reasonably good fit, and MBD masks are actually the cheapest compared to FaceQ and Silk Whitia masks if you go by per mask cost in boxes of 10.  The only tiny nitpick I have is that I wish it came with more excess serum - however, others say their MBD have come with more than plenty, so maybe it was just my particular boxes?  I'll be ordering 2-3 boxes of MBD so I'll give that one more chance.

Anyway, I can see why the MBD brand is so popular and the fact MBD has so many sheet mask types to choose from makes the brand only more addictive I must say.   I am fiddling with my next Sasa haul (which includes more sheet masks than I ever though I'd try in my life) and I'm working on compiling a massive ranked list of my favorite sheet masks ^_^  But for now my top 3 favorite sheet masks have been MBD Apple Polyphenol, Skinfood Vita-A Gel Mask (not a 'sheet' but close enough ^_~), and Silk Whitia Soy Milk Whitening Mask (even if I do need to rinse afterward, it smells so damn good and leaves my face quite luminous).

Review: FaceQ Grape Seed-Green Tea Mask

1.24.2011


Purchased at: Sasa

Price: $12.50/10 masks = $1.25/mask

Description:
Face Q Grape Seed + Green Tea Mask with a unique micro-emulsion technology turns nourishment into micro-emulsion particles that are smaller and easier to penetrate into the skin, improving moisture replenishment. Mask is made from 100% wood pulp with silk, it fit your facial contour perfectly, rapidly infiltrate moisture for the skin, after use your skin with become supple with natural radiance. Formulated with all natural botanical extracts, grape seeds contain powerful proanthocyanidins antioxidant, can prevent the skin from oxidation damage, thus lose luster and flexibility. Grape seed also has synergistic effect with collagen and elastin, making skin a shiny and flexible, and prevent premature wrinkles and skin spots.
Suitable for: All skin types/mature skin.

Experience: I love the delicate grape aroma.  I really prefer this mask to the FaceQ Red Pomegranate + CoQ10 mask.  This one seems much gentler (perhaps since it's for mature skin?).  However, the results aren't ask gratifying as what I get from Silk Whitia Soy Milk and the MBD Apple Polyphenol masks.  While this mask does calm and soothe redness on my face, my face just doesn't seem as radiant :\  Also it's not as hydrating as other masks I've tried, though it certainly isn't drying.  

Overall:
Fit: FaceQ masks are the most adjustable and fit the best compared to MBD to Silk Whitia.

Scent: A delicate grape scent. Very pleasing :)

Mask texture: The thinnest mask compared to MBD and Silk Whitia, very fine and paper-like.

Excess serum: Plenty for your neck and arms.  I get a good handful or two of extra serum each time. Like MBD, FaceQ serums do not need to be washed off and dry cleanly without any residue.

Claims:
  • Hyaluronic Acid: Ample moisture replenishment. <-- It's not that moisturizing, but not drying either.
  • Grape Seed extract, Vitamin C and Bio-White: Calm and whitening effect <-- Does temporarily calm skin and take down redness.
  • Green Tea Extract and Japanese wasabi extract: Minimize pores and smooths skin. <-- Minimizes pores temporarily but I dunno about "smooths skin."  My skin doesn't seem plumper or anything.
Overall Results: I have no complaints about this mask - smells great, fits well, and works.  However, it just doesn't seem as effective as other masks I've tried.  I don't have much to say about this mask because it's so....mediocre in a way.  It does it's job and exactly that.  No disappointments, but no amazing results either.  However, it truly is a very gentle mask and I do recommend this to those with sensitive skin.  Also, this is a very reasonably priced mask and comes with lots of excess serum to use.  I will happily finish this box, but I do not think I will be re-purchasing simply because it doesn't amaze me. 

Review: Silk Whitia Anti-Oxidation Whitening Mask

1.23.2011


Purchased at: Sasa

Price: Normally, it's $16.60 for 5 masks but till 1/31/2011, you get 1 box FREE ^_^ (so now is the time to buy Silk Whitia masks yo). Thus I paid $16.60/10masks = $1.66/mask.  Fyi, I always spend $75+ on Sasa to get free shipping.

Description:
Silk Whitia Anti-Oxidation Whitening Mask contains a rich content of Vitamin C and highly effective anti-oxidant ginseng extracted that turn dull skin bright. The whitening essence works effectively on the skin, lightening dark spots and producing a radiant appearance.
Suitable for: All skin types.


Experience: The mask is dripping with serum, you need to be over sink or you'll get droplets everywhere.  I've used about 10 Silk Whitia masks and they all come dripping with handfuls of excess serum.  This mask smelled strongly of dishwashing soap -_- It was immediately off-putting, but I got used to it quickly.  As with all Silk Whitia masks, this one leaves about 1/2 inch of my forehead bare eheh but this doesn't bother me since I do not have scars/acne on my forehead.  Since the mask is very thick it takes awhile to dry ^_^

Despite the dishwasher scent, this mask is very effective imho.  While this is on my face, my face seems to "cool down" a lot - I suspect this is mainly from the fact the mask is simply drenched in serum but whatever, it really does temporarily bring down the redness of scars.  My face feels very refreshed and my face is truly luminous and hydrated after I take it off.  Downside is, once again, the serum leaves a crust so my face must be rinsed or wiped down with toner afterward. However, I cannot say this is a flaw with the formula since the directions explicitly states to "rinse face with water."  *lazy*

Overall:
Fit: May not cover those with big foreheads (like me ^_~) very well.  Otherwise fits decently on me, though it is the least adjustable mask compared to MBD and FaceQ because there are no slits on the sides.

Scent: Legit smells like dish-washing soap.   The scent surprised me because I expected it to be more citrus-y...like Vitamin C-ish.

Mask Texture: Soft mask, very thick, holds lots of serum.

Excess serum: I always have a ton of excess serum with Silk Whitia masks, usually 1-2 handfuls I kid you not).  Downside is, like the Silk Whitia Soy Milk Whitening Mask, the serum of this one leaves a crust anywhere that wasn't covered with the mask and must be rinsed after mask removal.  But like I said, it's not "flaw" in Silk Whitia's formula since it's stated in the directions that it needs to be rinsed.

Claims:
Brighten dull skin <-- Yes, but almost every mask does this, at least temporarily.
Lighten dark spots <-- It lightens scars temporarily but as for long term lightening? I dunno. So far, I don't think so.
Produce a radiant appearance <-- Yes, my face seems very luminous afterward, very full and smooth.
Overall Results: I picked this up after fuzkittie's rave reviews ^_^  I believe she stated that this was her favorite Silk Whitia mask, along with the Silk Whitia Soy Milk.   On both counts I will agree that both of these masks are highly effective, though I prefer the Soy Milk mask (it smells a lot better and seems oddly gentler).   The plentiful excess serum is also a nice bonus since Silk Whitia masks are quite expensive compared to FaceQ and My Beauty Diary masks.   This mask did make my face seem more luminous and feel very clean/refreshed, but I think the Soy Milk is more hydrating and seems to make my face a wee bit more luminous (tho I admit that could just be in my head).  However, I will not be re-purchasing this fairly expensive mask because I do not like the scent and the mask isn't so effective I am willing to both put up with the scent, price, and rinse my face afterward.  I feel that there are plenty of other masks out there that suit my laziness and have a much more pleasant aroma.

That said, I will be continuing to try more Silk Whitia masks and will probably re-purchase the Silk Whitia Soy Milk mask, which I adore in every way (except the rinsing part), so I am willing to put up with the crust residue and price.  Overall, Silk Whitia masks seem quite effective and are well-made.  But I will say at this point, after trying a number of FaceQ, Silk Whitia, and MBD masks, so far MBD masks are my overall favorite.

Review: My Beauty Diary Red Vine Mask

1.23.2011


I am crazy behind on sheet mask reviews ;_; I'm going to try to crank all of 'em out before January is up eheh ^^

Purchased at: Sasa

Price: $12.10/10 masks = $1.21/mask

Description:
My Beauty Diary NATURAL KEY LINE Red Vine Mask whitens, tightens skin and fights against oxidization.
Antioxidant: contains polyphenols in Flavonoid serves as an effective antioxidant to fight against free radicals and suppress the formation of collagen dissolvent, keeping skin elastic.
Convergent skin and boost circulation: Anthocyans and tannins boost circulation and convergent skin, leaving skin white and tight with natural blush.
Amazing Nanospheres Technology: Structured with plenty of tiny holes, it enhances absorption of nourishment, leaving skin moisturized.
Suitable for: It is ideal for all skin types, especially loose and dull skin.

Experience: I immediately smelled wine when I opened the mask. Mask was nicely drenched but being a cheapskate, I was sad that there wasn't enough serum to put on my neck too.  That said, the MBD serums are excellent - they dry perfectly!  No crust like Silk Whitia or irritation that I got from the FaceQ Red Pomegranate+CoQ10 mask.  One bad thing - once I got a weird rash just under my eyes (aka on my eye bags) after I used it but I can't figure out of it was this mask or something else.  Either way, I've continued to use this mask and haven't had any problems again.  But I will say that I infinitely prefer the MBD Apple Polyphenol mask.


Overall:
Fit: Pretty good. It has fewer slits than the FaceQ masks but it fits well enough.  Much better fit than Silk Whitia masks.  I'll be doing a FaceQ vs MBD vs Silk Whitia mask comparison once I'm done doing all the individual mask reviews :}

Scent: It reeks of alcohol.  Doesn't bother me ehehe but holy balls it smells like a frat party in a mask - cranberry juice + vodka is what comes to mind.  People may find it a repelling scent but some may love it ;)

Texture: Paper-like, very thin.  It's basically thinner than Silk Whitia masks but a hair thicker than FaceQ masks. 

Excess serum: Compared to Silk Whitia (drenched) and FaceQ (drenched), MBD doesn't have a lot excess serum.  Don't worry, the mask itself is plenty wet, but I usually don't any extra serum to put on my neck.   Fyi, I've used about 7-8 MBD masks so far and none of them have had as much serum as Silk Whitia or FaceQ masks.

Claims:
Antioxidant: contains polyphenols in Flavonoid serves as an effective antioxidant to fight against free radicals and suppress the formation of collagen dissolvent, keeping skin elastic. <-- Yes, my skin seemed more elastic-y.
Convergent skin and boost circulation: Anthocyans and tannins boost circulation and convergent skin, leaving skin white and tight with natural blush. <-- My skin did seem whiter; it took a lot of redness from scars away temporarily, but I dunno about a natural blush.
Amazing Nanospheres Technology: Structured with plenty of tiny holes, it enhances absorption of nourishment, leaving skin moisturized. <-- Yes, this was quite moisturizing.
It is ideal for all skin types, especially loose and dull skin.  <-- I would say there was a bit of firming up going on, my skin definitely felt plumper and more hydrated.  And yes to the skin brightening too.
Overall Results: Other than that odd rash under my eyes I got once (aka the most sensitive part of a face), this mask has been working fine. I usually fall asleep with sheet masks on (more cheapness) and the next day my face was plushy, very smooth, and white.   And let me throw in a bit of info about products that claim to 'whiten' (at least in Korea): "whitening" means that it's trying to lighten/whiten scars and hyper-pigmentation - not make your natural skin color whiter (though the reduction of hyperpigmentation may make your skin seem lighter).  The goal of Korean (and I suspect most Asian) "whitening" products are to even out skin tone via lightening/whitening unnatural hyper-pigmentation aka darker skin that was caused by sunburns and acne.  Somehow, along the way whitening products have become misinterpreted (understandably so) as products that make you lighter than your original skin color. In other words, the vast majority of whitening products (at least the Korean ones) may take a NC20 person who has tanned the hell out of her skin back to original skin color but will NOT take a NC30 to a NC20 if your are a natural NC30 without a tan. I'll talk more about this another day.  There was a shininess you can either take as oiliness or luminosity - I think it's both - my face was very moisturized.  Make no mistake, this is a decent mask but I don't feel this is the most "effective" mask I've used.  Overall, I'm going to finish the box but I will not re-purchase.  I also much prefer the MBD Apple Polyphenol Mask *heart*

Beauty(InsideOut) Giveaway numero uno!

1.21.2011


Giveaway closes: FEB 28, 2011 @ 11:59pm EST. Winner will be announced in March Giveaway video.
Prize for this month: Original Urban Decay Naked palette with the double-ended pencil.

Rules
1.) Subscribe to Habitat for Humanity YT Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/HabitatFo...
2.) If under 18, please ask your parents permission since you will need to use a credit or debit card to donate. everything is in USD. No international debit cards.
3.) Donate at least $5.00 USD to FirstGiving page here http://bit.ly/fj33gB. Open WORLDWIDE so long that you have made a donation.

Donating Directions
1.) Go to the FirstGiving page I've set up: http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser...
2.) Enter a donation amount of $5+ USD. Please to consider covering the small fee as well (it's only .77 for a $10 donation).
3.) In Display name enter your YouTube username EXACTLY.
4.) Enter credit card info.
5.) Done :)

Please do consider donating to Love146 (ending sex slavery & human trafficking) via Missglamorazzi's channel.
Missglamorazzi: http://www.youtube.com/user/missglamo...
Missglamorazzi's Juicy Couture Giveaways (Supports Love146): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqdWSl...

Donating directly to Habitat: http://www.habitat.org/support
Charity Navigator Rating: Excellent, http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=3789
Hi peeps :D It's Friday (thank goodness ahah)!  I've planning this for quite awhile so I am happy that it is finally up ^_^   so if you have time please check the video out ;) In a nutshell, I'll be giving away some of my favorite beauty products to one of the peeps who donated to Habitat for Humanity every month till the end of June 2011.   For this month, the prize is the original UD Naked palette (the one with the double ended pencil) + China Glaze Re-fresh Mint and Zoya Gaia polish.   Unfortunately, the UD palette did come with two little fingerprint smudges (a la the Sephora/UD controversy tho it looks like Sephora has been deleting angry comments -_-), but as you can see in the video, the smudges are very small.  

I plan on hosting these monthly giveaways for nonprofits indefinitely, it's just a nice way to mix charity work + sharing some of my favorite goods ;)   And I am also squeaking together another "non-donating" giveaway and I'll have it up soon :)  But yeah, in the meantime, look into volunteering at your area's local Habitat!  If you don't want to work outdoors, you can volunteer at Habitat Re-stores too, they are basically Habitat-owned shops where they sell refurbished sinks, cabinets (basically Home Depot stuff) for very low prices.

Or if you're a college student and can't volunteer regularly, consider joining a Global Village team!  You do have to pay out of pocket (plane fare + team fee ($100-200 covers food, group expenses) + spending money), but it's not bad considering room & board is free, you get to travel to a lot non-touristy areas, and be in a safe group environment.  The most expensive thing is the plane ticket, honestly.  You can fundraise and ask for donations; I ended up only paying only ~$1500 of the $3000 it cost to go to Zambia (and that covered EVERYTHING including some of the most gorgeous 6ftx6ft paintings I bought from a local artisan) and all I had to do was go around to my dad's friends with a donation letter ^^;;   Africa is the most "expensive" of overseas destinations, if you're on a budget, South America is significantly cheaper.   The GV application process is fairly simple, but a lot depends on the team leaders.  There is a mini-interview when you apply for a team but it's really just so YOU get to know what kind of person the team leader is :}   If you have any questions about Global Village, just let me know.

Have a good weekend everyone!

Raindance Makeup Tutorial + Raincloud Earrings + Blueberry Kitkats!

1.19.2011


This is a blue post: blue rain drops, blue eye makeup, blueberry kitkats~ I must confess that I am not sure if this qualifies as a "wearable" look tho... it looks more like a 'snow' look rather than a 'rain' look...rats. Oh well.  I'm still rather fond of the colors I used here, I have such a weakness for blues and greens ^_^

My beloved grey knit cap is turning a faded green from many washings :\ As for why I'm wearing a scarf so weird...I'll let you in on a little secret - I was wearing PJs so I covered up my top with a scarf :)

Review: Rimmel Airy Fairy lipstick

1.18.2011


Or officially, the Rimmel London Lasting Finish Lipstick, 070 Airy Fairy.   Honestly, my lips (or rather, my skin tone) are so weird sometimes.  Rimmel's Airy Fairy is one of the most raved about lipsticks - it's supposedly one of the most universally flattering lipcolors out there and with a lot of Asians standing behind it (I say this as in: since they're Asian and I'm Asian, I assume colors they like will probably be flattering on me too), I finally went out and bought it.  Unfortunately, it's one of the most unflattering lipcolors I've had the misfortune to try.  It ranks right up there with NYX Thalia and NYX Rea in terms of hideous-ness on me :\ I didn't swatch it on my lips (forgot) but as you can see on my hand, somehow the muted coral pink turns a bruised blue-purple on my skin -_-    

Pigmentation: Pretty good.  Buildable too.
Long-lasting? Not really. Won't last a meal, lasts 3-4 hours alone.
Finish: A slight creamy finish.  Nice, modest shine.
Texture: Creamy and smooth. Applies evenly.
Scent: A mild artificial candy scent. Not bad as drugstore lipsticks go, quite tolerable.
Taste: Yuck. Tastes like plastic.
Packaging: I'm not crazy about the crown embedded in the cap, but overall it looks modest and practical.   Sturdy enough.
Cost: $5-6 @ Walmart.
Overall: Doesn't sink into to fine lines and it's not drying (though it's not moisturizing either).  Obviously, I'd never buy it again though b/c of the the color on me :\

I don't particularly blame the lipstick as much as myself ahah but it does tell me that my skintone must be somehow quite different from Xteeener, Frmheadtotoe, and Rainy Days & Lattes :(  cuz on me it looks NOTHING like what it looks like on them (they get a pink-gold finish).   It got a 4.0/5.0 on Makeup Alley too, so I'm clearly in the minority when it comes this lipstick *sigh* however, if you look at the low ratings, there are some that say that it turns grey/purple on them too.  This seems to happen to both warm and cool-toned people so I can't really pinpoint why exactly...  If you know, please enlighten me!

Anyway, I returned this puppy since I don't see it working out for me (ever) and if anybody else has had this purple-lips experience with this lipstick too - let me know! We may be skin undertone twins ^_^!

UPDATE...perhaps an answer to the mystery:

My lips are pretty damn dark (plum-red to bright pink, though I'm a NC25) so maybe that's why Airy Fairy is so purple-y on me whereas I love peachy orange-corals like NYX Pumpkin Pie?

Puccho Kajitsu King Candy + Otano no topo (Creme Brulee) + Award

1.16.2011

Nothing like spending a leisurely Sunday eating sweets, watching My Fair Wedding reruns, and surfing the internet.  Love it ^_^


Let me introduce you to one of the most interesting candy I've eaten in awhile - Puccho Kajitsu King candy.  The bag makes me chuckle ^^ It's pretty off the wall even considering the Asian love of kooky packaging~ 


It has real chunks of dried strawberry and pineapple in it and is made by the same company who makes Hi-Chew, so the white part has a similar (if not identical) flavor and consistency.


I really dig how they used real bits of fruit in the candy, which you can really taste since the white part doesn't really taste like much - it tastes (and looks) exactly the same as the white coating on the Hi-chew candies.  There is a definite pineapple flavor, more than strawberry, which is understandable since it's naturally a stronger flavor. Since there's fruit the texture of the candy is pretty odd...dried fruit + chewy candy but it's not unpleasant. 

This is definitely one of the more unique candies I've ever eaten and it's my brother's favorite Asian candy - and that's saying something since he always tries every piece of candy I buy (usually behind my back -____-).  ahhah and it is certainly a must try :}


Otona no topo is a kind of bastardized Pocky ^_^ all the coating is on the inside~


Each box came with two packets :} The hollow tubes are coated on the inside with a (really) sweet creme brulee flavored cream, but it lacked the subtly of real creme brulee so I actually didn't like this too much :\  The cracker part was oddly...salty?  and that made the cream even sweeter.  I prefer the "real" Pocky ^_^  You won't be missing out on much if you don't try this I think.

Also, this is much belated post but Elisa of Memorable Days was kind enough to tag me for this awhile back :)


I tried valiantly to not tag people who have been tagged before by me so here goes to my more recent discoveries (or those I hadn't gotten to tagging till now) who have impressed me with their well-rounded posts and lovely personalities:

1. Dina (XYYan)
2. Bubbles & Beauty
3. Slowbro's Dreams
4. patikym
5. Bibi
6. Silky Bow
7. Beauty & Gardens
8. Rinny's Beauty Diary
9. The Little Dust Princess
10. The Pioneer Woman - this isn't a "beauty" blog but who doesn't know this lady?!   She takes lovely landscape and food photos for one thing and just about the only person I can think of who talks so much about cows xD   She's really catapulted to fame via her blog - she's been on Food Network, published a cook book, is writing another book (a love story) and apparently it's being made into a movie with Reese Witherspoon in it O_O  And her photographs...*_*!
11. Musings of an Offbeat Biped
12. eyeseeyouuu - circle lens and her pencil sketches O_O
13. Cosmeddicted
14. BethLovesApple
15. Buhay sa Korea - Filipino living in Seoul.  One of the few strictly personal blogs I read ^_^

FYI: I tagged a lot of people in previous award tags but I'm really bad with going around and 'alerting' people ^_^ So, please - if you have time, please mosey on over through my old award tags cuz I prolly tagged you and didn't tell you :P

I hope everyone's having a wonderful weekend!

Review: Lioele Lip products + Nail Polishes

1.15.2011


I did a little hauling right after Christmas and picked up some Lioele products - I'm on a nail polish and lipstick kick right now since I'm pretty satisfied with my skin routine.

Review: Acne Patch Comparison (Lioele VS The Face Shop)

1.15.2011


A nice short post *whew*  I love making these little charts. Yeah, I know...I need a hobby hahaah.  If you are bored enough to want to hear me talk about this in a video - click here and go towards the end :}


Link: Lioele AC Trouble Control Patches
Link: The Face Shop Spot Clear Intensive Patches


Basically, Lioele ftw!  Definitely want to try Nexcare Acne Dressing, I hear great things and tis supa cheap, but it's always OOS :(

RnR Eyeshadow Review + Get RnR Eye Shadows for $5.85/each

1.12.2011

I am sort of mashing a review up with a sales alert to kill two birds with one stone.  Plus I want to introduce y'all to these shadows while a lot of  eyeshadow colors are available ;)  I am not sure about this yet but I believe that all R&R cosmetics are being phased out (not just the blushes), so as time goes by, less and less will be available.  So if you want any R&R cosmetics, you are running out of time :\  This is another long post so I posted most of the content after the jump.
Post contents:
R&R Shadow Reviews - Jaded, Nailed, and Lawsuit
Current R&R Sales
(jump)
How to Get R&R Eye Shadows for $5.85/each
Another Good Deal Method
Top CCW: Lawsuit, Jaded, Nailed

I briefly mentioned R&R eyeshadows here, but let me give you quick overview of just the eyeshadow colors I received.  I won't be talking about the blush because I already did a review of the other R&R blush colors I have and let's face it, everyone and their grandma knows how great R&R blushes are.
Rock & Republic Eye Shadow Description  
- Available in three finishes: matte, satin or shimmer 
- Long wearing, formulated for easy application 
- Richly pigmented 
- Fine jet-milled powder  
- Full range of shades
    Cost: I got these shadows 50%, before they got marked down, so I paid $14/eyeshadow + .99 shipping.

    Packaging:

    R&R eyeshadows are essentially the R&R blush in miniature.  They are literally exactly the same except for size with the identical magnetic enclosures and mirrors inside.  You can see the size comparisons above.  Even though the eyeshadow is smaller than the blush, it's still an awful lot of product for one eyeshadow color O_O  Trust me on that - much like the blushes, you will probably never be able to hit the pan on these.

    All swatches and descriptions in italics are from Karla Sugar (click here to see all R&R shadow swatches)!  All her swatches are very accurate1


    Jaded
    Karla Sugar Says: Jaded is a very iridescent blue-green that makes me think of Monet’s waterlilies (high shimmer).
    Finish: Shimmer, but not high-high shimmer as you might think.  The picture below is a very accurate look at the color.  It has a silvery, cool-toned sheen.


    Quality: Very finely milled, great quality, creamy, blendable, and highly pigmented.
    Overall: I made the the mistake of picking up another seafoam green -__- but that said, it's a lovely color and it really does remind me of the type of green Asians tend to wear - subtle and shimmery.  I would say this color is very nicely suited for cool tones.  However, as nice as the color is, I suspect NYX Wildfire and/or NYX Seafoam Green are dupes of this color, although I haven't done side-by-side comparison yet.


    Nailed
    Karla Sugar Says: Nailed is a super shimmery charcoal (high shimmer).
    Finish: Very shimmery with micro silver flecks.  No fallout at all and the shimmer is a gorgeous subtle grey-silver that is silky smooth on application. This is a very basic color - a cool dark gray.

     
    Quality: Very finely milled, great quality, creamy, blendable, and highly pigmented. 
    Overall: A basic color that will be hella useful for smoky eyes.  Gorgeous color, however, I feel that this is a dupe-able color or at least it's not an "unusual" color.  I am sure you can find charcoal greys elsewhere.  HOWEVER, this is such a basic, usable shade and for $5.85, I think this would be a great buy since you could always use it.


    Lawsuit
    Karla Sugar Says: Lawsuit is a totally cool dark brown that reflects green/blue-green; sort of the same idea as MAC Club (medium shimmer).
    Finish: Shimmery, though not as much as Nailed.  The most surprisingly duochrome eyeshadow I'e ever seen.


    Quality: Unlike Jaded and Nailed, I found this too be crumbly and little chunky.  It was a little difficult to apply evenly and bet it's because it's duochrome.   Definitely the most difficult in terms of application of the three. This struck me as very odd since R&R is known for their excellent finely milled quality.  However, it's incredibly pigmented and very creamy. 
    Overall: This is by far one of the most popular R&R shadows for a reason, it's so duochrome.  It goes on brown but shimmers a stark green!  I could look at it for hours and I was most excited about this color~  If you apply just this on your lid it looks like you are wearing two colors, brown on the outer corners, green in the center - it's awesome!  This would be great on days you're in a rush - with one color, it'll look like you're wearing two.  That said, this shade is not without it's faults, I found applying this difficult.  Mine was "chunky" - about 1-2mm sized bits would cake off the pan so I had to tap it off after every brush sweep. 

    As much as I like this color, I feel that this color is deceptively difficult to wear if you want to wear it as a dramatic look. I feel that this is one of those colors that shifts between warm and cool-tones aka the brown is warm-toned and the green is cool-toned.  This means those with only "neutral" complexions can really pull this off all the time.  On me it was almost a bit muddy looking (I think the brown was too warm for my face), but then again it's eyeshadow, not foundation, so it's not that big of a deal.   Also, if you're just using a thin wash of this color, this honestly isn't a problem at all.  I'm just being critical, as usual.   Overall, I'd say this is one of the most unique colors I own and I don't regret this color at all.  I highly recommend you snag this color if you're doing a R&R haul.

    On R&R Shadows in General
    Good:
    - A steal at $5.85 each.
    - Excellent quality: good pigmentation, 2 of the 3 colors were non-streaky and blend beautifully.
    - All are very finely milled and highly pigmented.
    - Enormous color selection.
    - Purty packaging!
    - All are very creamy and blendable.

    Bad:
    - Lawsuit was kind of crumbly, which confuses me. I suspect it might be just my pan.
    - Packaging is way too bulky to be carried around.

    I think the quantity you get is both a pro and a con.  You definitely get a bang for your buck but seriously, I have no idea why anyone would need so much of one shadow color :\ Maybe except for the matte blacks and whites, I feel a lot of product will eventually go to waste in the end >< That said...yes, I'll prolly buy more shadows because...$5.85/shadow is effing amazing!  Do use Karla Sugar's swatches as reference because all her swatches are spot on and she has all of them swatched.

    R&R Sales
    Ok, now for the sales ^^ R&R is actually holding two sales right now O_O


    You can only use 1 promo code at a time ^^  But if you want to get non-eyeshadows, use the 50% off all cosmetics obviously.  The BOGO promotion is not as good as it sounds honestly - it basically takes off only $14 flat :\


    Trend Predictions: More Spring/Summer 2011 Styles

    1.08.2011


    UPDATE: Check out my Trend Predictions for Spring/Summer 2013 Part 1 and Part 2.


    The last Spring/Summer 2011 Trend Prediction post I did has proven to be surprisingly popular so I thought I'd do followup :]  I stumbled across more Spring/Summer 2011 trend predictions on Refinery 29, so I thought I'd compile a couple of their posts into one easy-to-read page (cuz as much as I like the site, I hate how they make you click multiple times to just view one post -___-).  Fashion and trends are constantly evolving and changing so a couple things may vary from my last post - but as far as I can see, the overall predicted trends haven't shifted too much.  Everything written below was copy & pasted from the respective Refinery 29 post.  My personal comments are in red.

    This (massive) post will be covering Spring/Summer 2011 clothes, color, makeup, and most excitingly - nail polish predictions!  Like I said before, keeping tabs on trend predictions are the best way to (bargain) shop ahead of time :}  This post is so long I've put the rest of the post after the jump~

    How to get the UD Naked Palette for $41.98 on Ulta!

    1.08.2011


    The UD Naked palette is so IN-STOCK at Ulta!   As of 1/8/2011 12:51 AM, it's still in-stock.   This palette has definitely reached cult-status at the moment and is notoriously difficult to get, although, they were in-stock at Sephora recently (Sephora is OOS now) and being sold for ridiculously high prices on Amazon (seriously, the prices are ridiculous).

    So far, the ULTA deal is the best way to get the Naked palette cuz you can use the code 53131  (expires 1/29/2011) for free shipping off all purchases $25+ and if you go through E-bates if you're buying at Ulta, you get 5% cash back! When I got the Naked palette at Sephora, I actually had to purchase two things to get free shipping :P  Anyway, this is the best deal for the UD Naked Palette I've seen so far.

    How to get the UD Naked Palette for $41.98:
    1.) Click through E-bates (my referral link, if you don't mind ^_^). Make an account if you haven't already and find Ulta.  


    2.) Click on SHOP NOW - this allows to get 5% rebate on all your ULTA purchases, that's $2.02 in this case.

    3.) On the Ulta website, find the UD Naked Palette. Add as many as you want to the cart.

    4.) Type in 53131 during checkout to get Free Shipping.

    5.) All done ^_^! You got the UD Naked Palette for $41.98!  Make sure you go back to the E-bates website to set up for Cash Back method.  The easiest, most painless way is to get paid is use Direct Deposit via Paypal (which is what I did) :)

    Hurry, hurry and good luck :D!!!

    UPDATE: Ok, rats - I forgot they charge state tax.  But so does Sephora, so it's a good deal and you save the same amount regardless ^^;;  But technically should change the title of my blogpost.... 

    A Simple (Lunar) New Year Makeup Tutorial

    1.06.2011


    So yeah...I recorded this in December with every intention of posting it on 12/31/2010. Oh well. ahaha I did say procrastination was one of my New Year Resolutions ^_^  Also it surprises me a bit that people are more interested in seeing wearable, every day looks (see poll to right..and vote ^_~), but I guess it's just because I personally enjoy watching more costume-y tutorials xD  Anyway, here is my stab at a wearable look (ironically, for a holiday when most people wear dramatic, party looks hehe).  I had a mild cold in this video so sorry if I sound a little "sleepy" :}


    Products Used:
    NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk
    Maybelline Charcoal Smokes Quad
    Maybelline Designer Chocolates
    Koji Dolly Wink Liquid Liner in Black
    * UD Uzi (optional)
    * UD Maui Wowie (optional)
    Maybelline The Falsies Mascara in Black
    UD 24/7 Glide Pencil in Lucky
    Lioele Silky Highlighter BB Touch
    NYX Mosaic Blush in Dare
    Etude House Dear Darling Lipstick in Coral Shine 07
    The All Natural Face lipgloss in Aztec Gold

    * =  from UD Book of Shadows 3


    I dunno why the pic on the left turned out so green and the right so yellow :P   Colors are most accurate in face shots.  Anyway, I was aiming to create a wearable, but still celebratory look that blended berry reds, silvers, and golds~ The colors were inspired by how Chinese believe red and gold is lucky and how white and silver are supposed to "rabbit year" colors. 

    In any case, I really like the Maybelline Expert Wear Quads, they're so...useful.  Plus they're easy to get your paws on in drugstores/online and cheap to boot :D!  I snagged two of mine at a BOGO 50% sale at Walgreens, thanks to Sisi Sparkles who posts drugstore sales every week. I own three Maybelline Quads: Charcoal Smokes, Natural Smokes, and Designer Chocolates. I used two of them in this tut :}  I have fantasies of owning ALL the quads, but since I just picked up the UD Naked Palette *sigh* I will have to refrain from getting any more "neutral" palettes.


    The red crease color from Maybelline's Designer Chocolates also really strikes me as a dupe for the burnished red/berry color in the NARS Cheyenne duo.


    Temptalia's swatch makes it seem like NARS Cheyenne's is a wee bit on the brown side and more pigmented.  I can't say for sure though since I've never seen the duo in real life.  But Maybelline's red crease color in just about the only red-ish eye shadow I can work with - it's a soft, shimmery berry red color, it's the whole reason I purchased that palette.  I'll be doing a collective review of Maybelline Quads so I'll do swatches then :}

    To amp up the look, of course, I whipped out my trusty UD Book of Shadows III!


    Uzi and Maui Wowie are glittery shades and have a bit of fallout. Not bad though :) I consider these colors "optional" colors for this look though, the red crease color is really the showpiece ^_^


    And yes, I cut my hair. I regret it so much. I asked the hair dresser to trim off 2-3 inches and she chopped off SIX inches within seconds of saying, "Nah, 3 isn't enough, you have too much hair." *snipsnip* Me: O_O?!  It was so much hair it looked like a small possum had died behind my chair.

    Ugh, the trials of getting your hair cut by one of your mom's friends - I swear that Korean ahjummas are fully content to make decisions FOR you whether they're your mom or not if you're below the age of 30.  I should've just gone to my trusty (and more expensive) hair stylist.  All I'd wanted was to trim off my split ends, retouch my bangs, grow my hair for 2-3 more months, snip off the whole shebang to donate, and get a bob cut -___-  Now I have to grow my hair out again for another year to donate (minimum hair length is 10 in) and I am deeply unsatisfied with my hair. For one thing she didn't thin my hair so my head still feels "heavy" and my hair is even frizzier O_O   And while it still feels heavy and unmanagable, I am much more limited with the hair styles I can do.  I miss having my tumble of hair to play with. Now I shed just as much, my hair is frizzier, and I am stuck doing braids and little pony tails.  Whine, whine, bitch n moan *sigh*   I'm such a baby. I know hair grows back, but I miss my little cape of hair :(

    Ok, enough of that xP  Time to go eat some macarons and drool over Iron Chef reruns!
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