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Saturday, 25 January 2014

Philosophy Skincare Is Now Available at Sephora Malaysia Near You!

                  
At last, after a very long wait the skincare raved about by Oprah Winfrey has reached our Malaysian shores and is now available at Sephora.  Occupying one whole section, the brand did carry their essential product range like Purity Made Simple, Miracle Worker, Hope in a Jar, When Hope Is Not Enough and also included their fragrance and bath & body range. 

Their iconic cleanser Purity Made Simple is priced at MYR 85 ( 8 fl oz ) a one step cleanser that does it all. Their Hope In A Jar moisturizers are around MYR 130 ( if I remember it correctly, or else it would be MYR 155 ). Their When Hope Is Not Enough hydrating serum ( which is actually known in their official Philosophy website as Firming serum - I don't know why they have to change the label/name for South East Asia region ) is priced at MYR 155. 

I went into Sephora today to buy Tarte's amazing BB cream ( which I will do a separate review ). When I passed down the aisle where I saw the Philosophy brand I literally frozed with a dropped jaw hahahaha. I could have danced with joy if not for the throng of crowd in the store. I still have half a bottle of their Purity cleanser I bought last year online, so I picked up the Hydrating serum happy as a kid holding a lollipop. 

For the moment I didn't see any super sized edition of the skincare products. Their bath range is however, available in two sizes of 8 and 16 fl oz.

Overall I am quite happy with the range brought into Malaysia. I am a happy woman :D  if you can only spend on one item from this brand, put your money on Purity Made Simple cleanser. You won't need a makeup remover ever again. Squeacky clean face in just one wash. Amazing, amazing product.

Happy days! 

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Olay Regenerist Advance Cleansing System : Review






Hola I am back with another review. This time it is the Olay Regenerist Advance Cleansing System. To be honest I had this for more than 4 months already ( it was launched in September 2013 ) and I got mine at Watsons at MYR129. I wanted to give myself a longer period to try for me to really see the result of using this device. Fair? :D

First of all, it is a kit. The kit comes with a dual speed control cleansing device, 1 gentle brush head, 1 AA battery and a deluxe size sample of 20ml Regenerist Skin Renewal Cleanser. On the box it says the device helps to deep cleanse, gently exfoliate and prime your skin for anti-aging regimen.  

You might ask 'What about the brush head?'. Yes I hear you :D The brush head has a life span of 3 months after which you have to change it to maintain effectiveness of the cleansing system and for hygiene purposes. The brush head can be purchased separately retailing at MYR 21.90 for a set of 2 brushes.

I thought the price was reasonable and affordable compared to the famous-taken-the-world-by-storm-and-highly-acclaimed Clarisonic which is available at Sephora at MYR499. 



Ok time for some pictures


The device and the replacement cleansing brush heads


Detachable brush head of course. Can you see how small the device is?


It is that small and believe me I have tiny hands!


The device has two buttons: 1 is the on/off button ( no points at guessing which one that is )
and the other is the dual speed button. Click once for normal speed and twice for high speed.

And this is the deluxe size cleanser that comes in the kit. 

About the device:
  • It is small enough to travel with AND wire/cord hassle free because it is operating on batteries. It is smaller than Clarisonic Mia 2.
  • Unlike the Clarisonic that oscillates back and forth left to right, this spins 360 degrees.
  • Manual stop unlike Clarisonic. It also doesn't beep.
  • It is water resistant so that you can use it in the shower.
  • It has a smart memory system where it remembers your speed setting. When you switch the device on the next you use it, it will operate on the speed you were on last.

The cleansing brush head:
  • The bristles are so soft when it touches the skin. For something at this price I did not at all put such high hopes that it will feel this soft.
  • Easy to clean. Literally you just need to run it under running water and gently rub your thumb back and forth 3 times and all makeup residues from the cleansing process are gone.
  • The way to use it is not to press the bristles down on to your skin. Please ... I have seen some bloggers doing it on video, so know that you are not to do that at all. Believe me I was horrified when I saw that. You are to just let the bristles touch your skin and gently move from one area to the other. I will explain why shortly.
The skin renewal sample:
  • The cleanser has micro beads in it. So the cleanser does gentle exfoliation every time you use it. NOW you see why you don't press the bristles down hard on your face?? You don't want to over exfoliate for crying out loud. 
  • Nice for normal to dry skin type.

How to use this system:
  1. Deposit cleanser to the palm of your hand.
  2. Add some water and lather it. Never, ever lather cleanser on your face. I am tellin' ya girl that's a big NO NO. That is why your beauty therapist always lather cleanser on her palms first before she touches your face when you do your facial. has she ever put cleanser on your face then wet her hands and lather it on your skin? No! Ok? Do you hear me? Right, let's get on with this.
  3. After lathering the product on your palm, proceed to apply it onto your skin in a gentle circular motion until your whole face is covered with the lathered cleanser.
  4. Switch on the device and choose your speed (once for normal speed and twice for high speed). 
  5. Move the brush around your face at calculated duration as it rotates on its head, never spending too much time on any one area. Now you can get carried away here and there is no beeping sound that signals that you have been on a certain area for more than 1 minute. Remember more is bad in this case, alright? Good!
  6. After spending about 4-5 mins ( I usually don't take longer than 3 mins because I do not want to over do it ), take it off your skin and switch it off.
  7. You will see that there is no lather left on your skin from the cleanser because the bristles have taken it off.
  8. Rinse your face with water as usual and clean your brush head under running water.
  9. Leave the brush to dry in your room and never in the bathroom or else you will be collecting more then just dust on the bristles, get what I mean?
  10. You will feel that your skin is soft and smooth to the touch after you pat your face dry.
  11. Put on your serum or moisturizer while your skin is still damp.

My opinion after using this cleansing system for 4 months I find that:
  1. if you have sensitive skin, don't use this more than twice a week
  2. if you do not have sensitive skin, you can use it daily but never more than 3 minutes ( for me ). 
  3. the key is to use it moderately. For me, 3 - 4 times a week is enough especially if you are using cleansers with micro beads in it. I for one don't, yet my skin gets dry if I use this system every day despite using hydrating serum and moisturiser afterwards.
  4. it is a wonderful system. The system does not break me out unless I forgot to use it for more than a week at intervals, then yes I will break out because it is a cleansing process and trapped dirt is taken out from pores. 
  5. I also noticed that my serum and moisturiser penetrate my skin better when I use the system. I love that the most of this system.
Would I recommend it to my friends? YES, definitely. I would highly recommend my friends to purchase this.

So there you have it girls. If you have been wanting an effective cleansing system but don't have the budget for it, go for Olay Regenerist Advance Cleansing System. It is effective, operates on battery so no messy cords to pack when your are travelling, very travel friendly size and it is sort of kind to your wallet. 

However, if you do have the budget or just want to splurge on a Clarisonic Mia, by all means go ahead ... though it would do you harm if you wait for Sephora to give that occasioanl 20% off on all items in the store *wink wink ;D That way you can shop more!

Let me know if you will buy this or will buy this and share in the comment box below. Ciao Bella

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

My Birthday and Christmas Gift 2013 - Tarte, Nelissa Hilman, Sephora, MAC, In2It & Maybeline




My favourite time of the year has always revolved around the months of November and December because of all the gift giving and receiving activities. First of all, my birthday falls on the same date as my mum so it was a double celebration. Christmas 2013 was awesome because all of us were at home on Christmas day ( note that my sisters are in the service industry so festive seasons are always their busiest time of the year particularly year ends ).



Ok let's get on with my birthday presents first. The love of my life always gives me wonderful gifts for my birthday ( bless and love him ). Last year he gave me Tarte Treat Yourself To Gorgeous 28- piece Collection ( please note that this set was released at Sephora Malaysia last year. To the rest of the world, this collection was released at QVC in 2012 ) and a sweet C'est la Vie flats by Nelissa Hilman, a talented, successful new comer in the industry. Anyway, thank you Rizal for the gifts.  You know just what to give as always :D


Tarte Treat Yourself To Gorgeous 28 - piece Collection consist of 4 eye liners , 4 lip glosses and 20 eye shadows












The swatches.
I love this collection so much. The colour selection is so wearable and can easily be amp up for evening looks. The ingredients used are also great for the skin as they are all made without parabens and all other nonsense plus they are created with amazonian clay. It comes in 3 boxes to individually house the eye liners, lip glosses and eye shadows. The boxes are magnetised so you can stack the 2 smaller boxes on top of the big shadow box neatly and they won't budge.


Nelissa Hilman. Love the box!


My lovely C'est la Vie. 
Where do I begin to tell you about C'est la Vie.... these babies are so comfortable and sturdy if I may say so. An elegant design that is so feminine and suitable to be worn with jeans, leggings and dresses ( be it formal or informal ). Well crafted and at par with big international names in the industry. I can scale the mall with this! Kudos to Nelissa for crafting such beautiful and comfortable piece! This pair has literally replaced my Nine West flats! Can't wait to see more designs from her. Maybe more boots, wedges and heels? Do check out her line at www.nelissahilman.com

Next is from Sephora. The year before I received a full size body lotion and this year a cute paper bag  palette.




Now on for Chrismas gifts. My parents gave me cash money so I can shop for what I want. These are  from my sisters mmmuuuaaah! Thanks a bunch sistas! Love them gifts.


In2it lip colour and liquid eye liner, Maybeline Masterbrow (bought this on my own), MAC lip cremes

Swatches : In2it lip colour, MAC lip cremes, In2it liquid liner, Maybeline Masterbrow in Grey

Part of my birthday gifts came in voucher form from free brands which I am a member like Clarins, Melvita, L'Occitane etc.

All in all my 2013 ended with a blast! I hope yours ended the same or greater. I am grateful that I am surrounded with people who loves me and for their presence in my life. May 2014 be a wonderful for all of us. I love you.


Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Yoga : My Current Obsession and Why Everybody Has Got To Do It


Taken from health ambition.com

Namaste everyone and I hope life has been wonderful to you. 

Late last year I was diagnosed with a condition that could potentially cause a chain of other sickness if I don't address it. The acupuncturist suggested that I take up Yoga so that I would be more connected with myself. I wouldn't have thought of taking up yoga if I was not alarmed at the amount of pain I had to endure when she put the needle to the area where she said is my 'scar'. 

I was sceptical at first but my concerns propelled me to just dive into yoga. Now, 2 weeks into yoga (and yes I do it daily), I never felt better since I crossed 30. I now feel 15 years younger .. no joke hehe.

Words that I can associate to Yoga are Relaxing, Sculpting, Strengthening, Stabilizing and Streamlining. Yoga is a series of moves designed to unlock energy flow, pumping circulation and stimulating our vital organs while building strength, toning the body and increasing flexibility.

It also calms me down. Really! For those who know me 'calm' is never one of my better traits. Years of working in KL in stressful work environment made me impatient, always do things with a sense of urgency and I am always rushing to do 101 things at one time ( like a woman in Super Woman suit , get what I mean? Hahaha )  However, I finally understand what calm means after going through my practice.

Why I love Yoga?
  1. It is gentle. The movement from one pose to another is so fluid that it forces me to be patient  and to take my time at doing it.
  2. It calms my nerves. Yoga focuses on breathing therefore it calms my mind which in turn creates a relax state or well being. It feels weird at first that I have to lie down flat on the mat at the end of each session and just ...  breathe. Quite different from the modern workout where we are not encouraged to sit after a workout session right? Right!
  3. My constant and irritating back ache is almost gone. Yoga places importance in the flexibility of the spine. A flexible spine is a flexible mind. When our mind is flexible then our body is more open for good things to happen to us. Apparently when we move our spine and stretch it, we are also rejuvenating our nervous system, which I found out, is vital at ensuring healthy functionality of muscles and organs. How's that ladies? Sold? Not yet? Read on....
  4. There are routines to address different problems such as stress, bloatness, PMS, weight lose and insomnia. I am in awe. It is like the answer to all our woman issues!
  5. I feel 'light' after every practice. That makes me feel great and at peace with myself. I have been working out consistently everyday before I started on Yoga. However,  almost after each session I feel sore and I had to suffer that for days. At times I can't even walk properly because I ache all over. I have not experienced that with Yoga despite feeling like I-would-surely-die-when-this-ends. Sounds good? Hell yeah!
  6. Yoga is forgiving. Everybody works at their own pace. Their philosophy is you have to start somewhere and if you fall from a pose, it is perfectly ok but you get up and do it again. Come to think of it, that is how life is. You fall but you get back up again and never stop trying. One more thing, they always say when you feel like giving up, that is when you have to keep on doing it. How many times in life have we missed out on things because we give up just when we are about to reach the big break? Think about it...
  7. Yoga teaches perseverance and not to compete with anyone but yourself. You don't have to worry about how beautiful you are doing the poses especially if you are a beginner. It is a practice not a performance they say. So it is ok if your poses are not perfect when you first start. 
  8. Listen to your body. Yoga makes you more aware of your body. They always stress on being aware of where your body aches at certain poses or what does your mind gravitate towards when you are stressed etc.. I love that part of Yoga most of all.
  9. Be patient. Yoga teaches me to be patient with myself and to trust that I will feel the difference in time. It doesn't provide you with fast results. True enough, I have not lost weight (but that's not why I started Yoga anyway) after consistently doing my practice for 2 weeks but the past two days I noticed that my core is getting stronger and I can almost forget that I have back pain ( in fact I don't feel it at all ).
  10. It is the perfect workout for ladies. Low impact, addresses your woman issues, calms you, teaches you to be kind to yourselves and most of all Yoga makes you feel good about yourself.
  11. I don't have to be flexible like a pretzel to start Yoga. Flexibility will come in time and I look forward to that, something that I have to work on. I am already getting better at stretching ;D
I am so glad I started practicing Yoga. I am so motivated to do it because of how I feel after each session. 

Having experienced that for myself, I want you to experience it too. I am closing this post with a Yoga for beginners for those of you who might not know where to start or simply curious. Let me know what you feel after doing the practice. I would love to hear your sharing.



Enjoy the video and stay beautiful everyone!

Saturday, 18 January 2014

Taking low fat processed food is better? Think again oh ye weight watchers






Hello ladies,

Recently, I have been mindful of what I put in my body .. or stomach to be precise :D. Had a chat with my sister and she told me that processed food that claimed to be low fat or reduced fat are actually more harmful to the body than the original ones. 

That fact horrified me. To be fair, we were never properly been 'food educated'. We have no clue as to how food are processed or what stuff they put in these marvellously, conveniently packed food we find in the grocery food aisle ... right? Right!

Thanks to documentary and food channels or even YouTube, we now know a bit more. Well Jamie Oliver did say in his Food Revolution series that we have to read the labels on the food packaging. If we don't understand what is written on the labels, don't buy.

Anyways, so horrified I was that I had to see it for myself. So I went to my favourite local grocer and shop a little bit more informed then I was before being on the look out for any confirmation to the everything I have heard or seen on TV. 

This is what I found ... Low fat or reduced fat processed food has more ingredients than the original ones. Simply put, the list is longer and less understandable. The more natural the product the less ingredients they have. Not to mention that they are more expensive than the normal or low fat ones.

Here are some pictures ( I enjoyed this part of my so called research )!

Skippy Creamy Peanut Butter 
The label.
The reduced fat option for weight watchers

The label. Longer list no?

So there you have it. The truth is on the labels ladies. There is more to this. I will let the video elaborate on this as I am not the expert. I do suggest that you take some time to watch this video and watch it many times if you have to.




Ok ok ..  I know that's an hour long video so if you prefer an abridged version, here it is. I find this very useful to understand. Glucose? Fructose? I do need to stress here that when he says fructose, he is not referring to the ones naturally found in fruits. When we consume fruits yes we take in fructose but we are also taking in natural fibre and vitamins along with it, so that is totally different than the artificially made fructose or isolated fructose. Just keep that in mind. Don't go cutting off eating bananas or apples and all ya. 



As for my peanut butter .. I decided to buy the natural one. It cost me more but I like the list on the label better and it comforts me to know that I have taken steps to be responsible towards my own body. It is still processed food but to me, at least it is better than the reduced fat one. 

The natural version of Skippy peanut butter spread.

And I love that I can count the ingredients used with one hand :D

The choice is yours. Do your own research and choose. Stay healthy beautiful. Let me know what you find out!


Daily nuggets:

  • When I opened my natural peanut butter, there is a layer of oil that covers the butter. I think it acts as a natural preservative just like how salt is sprinkled on top of ground chili paste in Malaysia
  • I have been doing yoga for the past 2 weeks and I felt 'lighter' (for lack of better word). I actually felt better and more connected with myself. Perhaps i will talk about this in length in a separate post :D
  • I find it sad that people don't send out physical cards anymore. There is something special about receiving something in the mailbox instead of the daily over flooding mails in our inbox.





Monday, 13 January 2014

Urban Decay Naked 3 : Quick Swatches




Yup you might have known by now that the Urban Decay Naked 3 was released in Malaysia on December 12, 2013 .. aaaand I, for the first time that is, was among the unfortunate ones who didn't get to own this during the launch meh! I am usually one of those enthusiast who would be among the first to own stuff like this... anyways..

Of course it is now sold out and we wouldn't know when new stocks will come in. One of the Beauty Advisor told me that Naked 2 has been out of stock since 4 months ago and they are still waiting for that stock to come in. So taking that as a bench mark, we would probably have to wait for quite a bit.

Nonetheless I have gone ahead and swatched them for your viewing pleasure :) The photo is also taken without filters and the colours were swatched without the use of eye shadow primer so that you can see it as-is on natural light.

Top row (L-R) : Strange, Dust, Burnout, Limit
Middle row (L-R) : Buzz, Trick, Nooner, Liar,
Bottom row (L-R) : Factory, Mugshot, Darkside, Blackheart

My personal and absolute favourites would be Buzz, Nooner, Liar and Factory. The rest are just ok for me and my I really don't like that Dust. I mean it almost came up to nothing! I had to really work on the colour to get that swatch mind you.. : /

While trying not to be a sour grape about this, some of these colours are quite the everyday type which is what the Naked range is all about. You can find dupes for most of these colours ( the lighter ones in particular in Coastal Scents 88 Warm Palette ) if you are a palette makeup junkie like me. MAC Satin Taupe was almost identical to Liar, MAC Beauty Mark for Blackheart and my Makeup Geek Taupe Notch is identical to Mugshot. 

All in all, I think it is a great palette to have, eventhough I am finding it hard for me to justify to myself on why I need to own this palette ... hehe ok on a lighter note, since when do makeup junkies need to justify their purchases right? Like I need my gazillion palettes nicely stashed in my makeup drawers?!

What about you? Would you buy Naked 3?  Share your thoughts in the comment section below. I would love to hear from you :D

Have a great day darlings!