With my salary increment padding my bank account, it really couldn’t be helped that I would splurge a little bit on beauty products :) So here’s what I tried in the last two months!
1. Dove Damage Therapy Intense Repair Overnight Treatment – with Micro Moisture Serum & Fiber Actives. Complete Hair renewal Overnight.
It’s such a darn long name but this product REALLY works! It’s basically a conditioner that you can leave in your hair overnight, & I feel that because it’s a cream product, it’s easier to apply it evenly to one’s hair than say, a spray. So I’m liking product application & the results.
It’s no secret that have long luscious locks is the dream of every girl. I actually tried this product after I began using Dove’s damage therapy shampoo range, which I love. It’s very gentle on the hair and even my boyfriend says he sees a marked improvement in the state of my hair (which prior to this, was very frizzy with many split ends etc due to my excessive hair dyeing..)
Moreover, it’s less fuss free / time consuming compared to hair masks/treatments that you wash off etc. Just a quick pump of the product into your hands, a wipe down and finger comb through your hair, then voila! you’re ready for bed :)
Dove with FIBER ACTIVES deeply penetrates damaged hair throughout the night to actively replenish vital proteins and restore strength. MICRO MOISTURE SERUM nourishes and seals each hair strand from root to tip.
All in all, it’s definitely a product I would re-purchase. the only thing i’d complain about is that my hair does feel more “heavy” when I wake up – perhaps because the cream makes my hair heavier?? but it’s not a big issue, though I would think that those with oily scalps would prefer the spray treatment instead of this overnight cream.
2. L’oreal White Perfect Intense Rosy Whitening – Night
I’m not too ready to jump into the entire world of anti-ageing creams yet, but I thought it wouldn’t hurt to give a night cream a try. Since I’m already an ardent fan of the L’oreal Hydrafresh Anti-shine All Day Hydrating & Mattifying Icy Gel, it seemed like a good idea to grab one of their night creams as well.
What it does:
- Brightens skin complexion and tones down spots – this cream contains the powerful double action ingredient, Melanin-Vanish, that helps to inhibit melanin production and unload existing dark pigments in skin layers. During the night, skin gets visibly fairer and spots fade out.
- Boosts your skin’s rosy glow – Enriched in Tourmaline gemstone, known to help stimulate skin microcirculation, it acts during the night for a radiant rosy glow in the morning
- Soothes and reinforces the skin – UV rays, pollution and stress can lead to create free radicals, which have harmful effects on skin cells. This cream contains vitamin E, a well-known antioxidant that helps to fight against free radical’s damage on skin.
My verdict? I can’t exactly pinpoint how awesome it is yet, but I’m definitely pleased with its non-greasy texture, and my skin does seem less “tired” in the morning. While it’s true that I don’t seem to have dark spots these few days, I’m not exactly a dark-spotty type of person. plus my facial hair is naturally invisible anyway, so hmm maybe this wasn’t the right product for me to purchase. That said, I quite like it for its moisturizing properties, plus my skin seems slightly less blotchy. They also have this product in the day cream, with added SPF.
3. The Faceshop Pore Minimizer – Controlling Toner with Powder, All Skin Types
I hate my pores. there’s no getting around it, I really do :( so everytime i see a pore-minimizing product, i have to control myself before i grab it off the shelf. The Faceshop has rather affordable products, so i decided to try this.
Due to the powder content, one has to shake the bottle thoroughly to ensure that the mixture is mixed properly, which for the lazy ones, might be a bit of a hassle. At first, I wasn’t used to shaking it and ended up wasting some of it (since i had to re-shake and apply all over again), but after awhile, it became routine.
Most toners out there in the market tend to have a high alcoholic content, which makes them smell like alcohol & feel extremely drying. This is so that they perform precisely what a toner is supposed to do – clean your face thoroughly. That said, because of my skin’s sensitivity, I tend to steer away from very strong toners. So I was rather apprehensive about using this product after bringing it home, but to my pleasant surprise, it didn’t sting at all and was very gentle. However, I’m also doubtful about its pore minimizing properties, I certainly didn’t see any huge effect.
Infused with kaolin clay – a popular product in many sebum/oil-controlling face masks, the toner aims to help in oil control besides minimizing your pores. I wouldn’t say it’s a bad product, I’m just skeptical of its abilities. Half a bottle’s gone on my end but hmmm maybe I need to use the whole range of products together before I see any visible results. What do you think?
4. Eucerin DermatoCLEAN Refreshing Cleansing Gel & Daiso Facial Brush
Targeted specifically for those with normal to combination skin, this product promises to make skin visibly purified, clear & refreshed, plus it lets skin breath and primes it for moisturization. Whilst Eucerin is normally one of my favourite brands (because it hardly ever allows me to breakout), I do find that this gel formula kinda makes it hard to lather & subsequently, wash my face properly. Somehow the gel seems very thick and doesn’t seem to be washing my skin as effectively as I hoped it would.
So i endured a couple days of frustrating face washing, but since I didn’t want to just dump the product, I decided to look for a more effective way to use it. Cue in the Daiso facial brush! (pictures credit to bebe2003)
First, I dabbed the Eucerin gel all over my face, before proceeding to brush my face with the soft silicone Daiso Facial Brush in circular motions. It’s a tad more tiring but after that, I really felt my face was really smooth, cleaned and soft. The brush isn’t irritable at all, as long as you use it gently. It was rather incredible how awesome my face feels after every wash with this facial brush now – I’m definitely recommending it for gels of all sorts!
:) What beauty products would you like us to try?
Today’s Web Wednesday features just one website, but it’s one with an awful lot of awesome tips & tricks for all girls out there, thebeautydepartment.com. My favourite part of the site? Its feature on hair! click on each image to get to the relevant tutorials
I’ll definitely be trying out the fun bun and the loose waves, which I still haven’t perfected coz I’m lazy to practice. haha! Have fun! :)
all image credits to thebeautydepartment.com
With preparations for Carol’s wedding beginning to take momentum, I can’t help but feel super excited… for our hair! hahaha. Hair accessories have always inspired and intrigued me, so I’m definitely hoping that Carol will be inclined to try one of these great accessories for her big day :)
Carol is a girl who loves braids, so these braid inspired styles will suit her perfectly!
one idea I’m in love with? A wedding tiara!
I think tiaras just look so gorgeous on brunettes :)
& speaking of tiaras, perhaps jeweled accessories?
what are your wedding inspirations? share them with us!
all pictures from tumblr.com
Despite the hectic work schedule on weekdays and meetups & outings with the friends + the bf on weekends, I always make it a point to have time for myself, just to sit back, relax a little and give myself some pampering. Lately, besides my weekly face mask, I’ve begun to multi-task and do hair treatments at the same time as well, which really makes sense since both should be left on for about 10-15 mins :) It’s amazing how just setting aside 15 minutes each week can do such wonders for my hair, I’ve noticed HUGE improvements in my hair, and love how light, shiny and tangle-free it is at the moment.
Hair Masks are not new to my personal care repertoire, but I used to use them only monthly, instead of weekly as I’ve recently started doing. I always used to think that there was never enough time, but as it turns out, the satisfaction and happiness gained from having such lovely locks more than makes up for the tiny sacrifices I make in order to have the time to treat my hair :)
As usual, shown above are the hair treatments I’ve already tried.The Dove Regenerating Hair Mask was the first I tried, back in 2009 as I received it in one of the CozyCot fair goody bags. It was a pretty huge tub and I really enjoyed how my hair felt after that. It felt like hair conditioner, just that you leave it in your hair for a much longer time and it’s slightly harder to wash off.
The L’oreal Professional Lumino Contrast hair mask was a gift that came with my contact lens purchase late last year  and though it was merely a sample size bottle, I had enough of it to last me through a month. Meant for those with dyed/highlighted hair, I definitely noticed that my hair colour stayed more vibrant for a longer period without fading. similar to Dove’s product, it felt like conditioner as well.
Last but not least, the Essentials Hair Damage Care Rich Premier Treatment was the only product I purchased, as I was freaking out slightly about the increasing number of split ends in my hair. It’s the one I’m presently using, and of all those I’ve tried, has the most pleasant scent. (the other two were quite scentless post-treatment). My hair is tangle free, my dyed hair looks vibrant and feels much smoother as well :)
All in all, I wouldn’t say that there’s a great difference between any of these hair treatment masks, but sparing just 5-15 mins (depending on instructions) each week using these had definitely made a wonderful difference for me, and I plan to continue doing so.
I began dyeing my hair as early as my junior college days (but got away with it thanks to 1. bad choice of a really dark colour that didn’t even show, 2. my avoidance of the lethal combination of direct sunlight + discipline mistress) and have continued ever since I entered the university. I’ve also tried dyeing my hair at the salon (twice), but I still enjoy dyeing my hair at home because I can do it whenever I want to, even if it’s in the middle of the night… and I personally find it quite a fun experience.
my weapon of choice
I’ll freely admit that when I first started dyeing my hair at home, I did meet with loads of “accidents” and unfortunate results. However, as the years passed by, I gradually modified and perfected my dyeing technique, and have been able to emerge each time with hair dyed to my satisfaction, without the mess! :)
What hair dye colour you choose is really up to your choice, but it’s imperative not to be seduced by the pretty model smiling on the cover of the box. Check the back or top of the box for the actual colour that will show up on your hair, and decide from there.
I like to section out my hair with hair clips during my dye application. Preferably, you shouldn’t be dyeing your hair messily (see right), but in an organized fashion. I love using the same hair clips that salons frequently use, as they clip up large chunks of hair without any problems at all.
Prior to application, if you’re the messy type who accidentally colours your ears/forehead etc. during a dye job, put a body butter/moisturizer on those areas. This will ensure that the dye will not colour those areas :)
One of the cheapest, and smartest way of getting through a hair-dye job at home without the mess is buying an inexpensive shower cap! I get mine from streetside stores and they cost anywhere from $1 – $2. It’s important to get an “umbrella-like” material so that the dye won’t escape. Whilst waiting out the required amount of time, put on the shower cap and you can freely go ahead with whatever you were doing :) The greatest benefit from using a shower cap is that you won’t accidentally colour your ears, forehead or neck either, and that the dye will only stay at your scalp area.
It is actually perfectly ok to lightly shampoo your hair after you’ve rinsed out the hair dye – I love using L’oreal kids shampoo because it smells the strongest! This ensures that the hair dye smell won’t stick to your hair beyond the next few hours :)
What’s your favourite brand of hair dye?
Since I just did my hair recently, I thought I would share some tips about what to prepare for when you get to the hair salon.
book an appointment. It’s always better to call up and check whether the hair salon is open and to book an appointment. You don’t want to show up unannounced only to be turned away because the shop’s closed or it’s just too busy to take in another customer.
ask how long the procedure will take. This is especially important if you want to schedule something after doing your hair. You don’t want to be in a situation where you still have foils in your hair but you have to leave in 10mins for a lunch appointment. If your hairdresser says that you need 3 hours, then do leave some buffer time in between just in case (you know, traveling time and what not).
eat before you come. If you are thinking of perming, rebonding or colouring your hair, these procedures are going to take a LONG time. If you’re lucky, you’ll be done in 2 hours. If you’re not, it could drag to 3 hours or more. So to prevent getting gastric pains, do grab a bite. Or if your hairdresser’s really nice (some places actually offer this service), ask if she could send someone to buy some food for you.
dress up. I think one of the misconceptions about going to the hair salon is wearing your oldest or lousiest t-shirts there because you don’t wanna get hair or dye colour all over it. While this is a valid concern, these things seldom happen in a good salon where they actually dust you off and make sure you look impeccable before you leave. The reason why I say you need to dress up, is to give a good first impression on your hairdresser. When you dress up, you are telling him/her that you care about your appearance and subconsciously, this will make your hairdresser WANT to put in that additional effort to make your hair look beautiful.
bring a photo/picture/style inspiration. It’s very difficult for your stylist to envision what you want and translate it in reality if you don’t give some concrete examples. You need to do a little bit of homework. Cut out pictures from a magazine or google specific things like “spiral curls” or “copper red” and have these pictures ready for your stylist to peruse. This will help get both of you on the same page so he/she can recreate a look that suits you.
voice your opinion. If your hairdresser is scrubbing your head too hard or you feel uncomfortable while sitting in the shampooing chair OR you feel alarmed because she snipped too much off your fringe, please say something! You are a paying customer and your opinion counts. You don’t want to leave with an angled bob and a heart full of regret when what you really want is long flowing curls.
take a card. If you like the service of a particular hairstylist, remember to take his/her namecard. Usually for women with long hair, you will only come back 3 months later. By then, you might have forgotten your hair guru’s name! So to keep up with the amazing and special partnership, getting a namecard is the way to go.
be late. Hair salons run on a schedule and if you are late for your appointment, this will make your hair stylist really panicky and he/she’ll will have to work faster. This means, less meticulous service and a shoddier hair job. Don’t shortchange yourself. Come early.
wear spectacles if you can help it. Try to wear contact lens so you can SEE what the hair stylist is doing and you can tell him/her what you want just as he/she is about to do it. You can’t do that if you wore glasses to the hair salon because well, you have to take them off when your hair is cut. And sometimes, when you put them back on again, the damage has already been done.
be suckered/pressured into buying something. Alot of hair salons sell products. You know, loreal, kerastase, vidal sassoon. And sometimes, as the stylist is doing your hair, he/she may comment that your hair is dry, you have dandruff, oily scalp yadayada and recommend that you buy their products. Do not, and I repeat, do not commit and say yes BEFORE checking the price. You could get the very same products at drugstores for a whole lot cheaper. Also, if you feel uncomfortable because of their pushy sales tactics (would you like to do additional treatment? buy this hair mask etc), remember to decline nicely. It is your prerogative to say no.
wash your hair immediately when you get home. I know it sounds icky to not wash your hair everyday. But for the first day after you get your hair done (especially specialized treatments like coloring, highlights, perm and rebonding), hairstylists usually advise that you keep your hair high and dry. This is to allow the chemicals to really seep into your hair so that it can hold a curl or keep its color for much longer.
I hope my random ramblings have been useful! These are general rules that I abide by but of course, they change from person to person. Hope your next visit to the hair salon will be an enjoyable one!
The other day, I was hanging around Marina Square and spotted a new restaurant and it was none other than…
Hippopotamus Restaurant and Grill
And since I was having a massive steak craving, I decided to try this place out. Hippopotamus is actually a French steak place so they serve many different kinds of sauces and side dishes along with your meal and judging from the menu, prices are quite reasonable. There are different price points starting from $15.90 for a set lunch all the way to $39.90 (if I’m not mistaken) for a more atas meal complete with beverage, appetizer and dessert.
The restaurant was really welcoming. I like the bold reds used in it’s interior design and the napkins too. It makes the place feel more alive. And as with every French tradition, meals start with bread and butter.
Every main course comes with a choice of 3 sides and 1 sauce. My friend and I deliberately ordered different sides just so we could taste them all. Lol. I’ve personally never tried ratatouille before but this here tastes like pasta sauce with lots of veggies in it. Not bad, I would say, but not quite the sides the I would have chosen. Baked potato tasted like the Jack’s Place one where the potato is baked hard (unlike the fluffy ones of Aston’s) and the sour cream was just nice. Not too overpoweringly sour so I enjoyed that. Long beans were overcooked imo. I would have preferred it to be crunchy instead of flaccid, fries were crisp and nicely salted and potato gratin was alright. Nothing much to whoop about.
Ok, enough with getting sidelined. Let’s focus on the big picture. How was the steak? Well, I thought it was gorgeous. Mouthwateringly so. I’m usually quite a small eater but I finished everything off my plate. First off, they gave us a good cut of steak so it was well marbled, easy to cut and juicy (I eat mine medium rare and they got it just right). And I love the sauce that it’s paired with. Apparently it’s a white wine and butter concoction but I can’t taste the wine at all. Nevertheless, the buttery sauce matched the steak really well. My friend ordered a cheese sauce but it was too overpowering for my liking. I’m pretty sure they used blue cheese in that. But on a whole, I had a wonderful experience and I would definitely go back. Especially since the bill came to about $30 each inclusive of GST and what not. Which is quite reasonable I felt for the amount and quality of food provided. Sides aren’t too spectacular though, the main highlight is really the steak so please try if you are a meat-lover.
Hippopotamus Restaurant and Grill is located at 6 Raffles Boulevard #01-204/205 Marina Square. Tel: 63385352. Opening hours: 11am-10pm daily.
Also, I finally got my hair done! Ruth had some discount coupon for REDS where it’s $195 for cut, colour and highlight and since the coupon was going to expire at the end of the month and I wouldn’t have time to use it once school starts in a week (NOOOOO…..) I decided to just go for it and I must say, I’m quite pleased with the result.
As you can see, I didn’t make any drastic changes because the stylist said that the previous stylist cut my hair too thin so she told me to grow it out a little. But what I liked, was how she made my hair look voluminous (because I don’t have thick hair) not just with blowdrying, but with the choice of color and highlights. Burgundy was chosen as my base colour and a copper red as my highlight (sorry you can’t see it here, it was a rainy day with little sunshine). But instead of doing streaks on the top part of my hair, which will look awful once my roots grow out, she did the highlights inside. So every time I swish my hair now, there’ll be that little flash of red. So exciting! lol.
Playing around with instagram. Love photos with that aged look
Umbrella: i-deco (Christmas present from Ruth)
Open-toe sandals: Bata
I’ve been toying with the idea of becoming a redhead for quite awhile – but the idea of a colour so bold (I don’t mean subtly red, i mean VISIBLE red even indoors) has been quite scary to me. Certainly it’s not too great a choice considering that I’m going for job interviews once this bumming period is over, but seeing Evan Rachel Wood’s transition from this:
is just FANTASTIC. I wanna be a redhead now! Though I’ll admit that her red isn’t a fiery brilliant red. It’s more of a brown-red shade. I love the two reddish shades above on her, though I’m starting to admit to myself (in this haze of deluded desire) that I’ll have to bleach my hair before I can even think of attaining hair in that gorgeous colour. It certainly doesn’t help that she looks so charming in Nylon Tv’s latest clip
I am *so tempted* right now. Common Sense has left me.
Evan Rachel Woods had a cameo in Green Day’s “Wake Me Up When September Ends” and has a recurring role in the HBO supernatural drama, “True Blood”.
For someone who treasures their long tresses as dearly as I do, going to the hair dresser is an annual event that I mostly dread. Hairdressers either chop off too much, layer too thinly or attempt to hard-sell me various hair products that cost a bomb, making it an altogether awkward and uncomfortable experience. Today however, was really quite different! Having had a good experience at Supercuts @ Cineleisure once before when I went with some friends from university, I decided to try out Supercuts at the new Nex Mall near my house. With 50% off all hair services, I decided to take the plunge.
For a price of $22 (after 50% off), this haircut was inclusive of the following services:
- Shampoo (during which my hairstylist Belle gave me a wondrously relaxing head massage) – 10 mins
- Rinse (another head massage!) – 5 mins
- Cut – 30 mins
- Rinse – 5 mins
- Blow Dry & Styling – 25 mins
Total time spent: 1 hour 15 mins
I have to say, I was extremely pleased with the result! Not to mention that Belle was very friendly throughout the haircut, as were all the other stylists at Supercuts. I noticed many of the customers chatting happily with their hairstylists, and despite the fact that there were many customers, each hairstylist only served one customer at a time, which is quite unusual – even at Cineleisure my hairstylist would zip around serving a few customers at a time. The great service was definitely something I loved about this place, plus the fact that Belle took that extra half an hour to style my hair to show me what type of styling would suit my face best AND explained to me how to recreate this look in the comfort of my home, really convinced me that Supercuts at Nex Mall was a hair salon worth going back to :) Personally, I really love this look & hopefully I’ll be able to keep it as such for as long as possible. I also signed up for a hair package of 3 haircuts + 2 free haircuts = $135 ($27 per haircut) that’s available for this month only.
The 50% off all hair services promo is available til 19th Jan 2011. It also includes colour & chemical treatments.
A basic women’s haircut will take 45mins-1 hour depending on hair length. A men’s haircut will take approximately 30-45 mins. The cost of a haircut is dependent on hair length – my hair was considered extra long (original length almost reached my elbows)
Supercuts prioritizes those who have made an appointment, they can be contacted at 6634 4466. Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10am-9pm, weekends & Public holidays: 10am-7pm
With my bouncy, wonderful hair, my head felt unbelievably light and I enjoyed strolling around the mall, which is about 90% open now! I can’t wait for the Shaw Movie Theatre to open tomorrow, 8 of its 10 brand-new theatres are opening, and given that Shaw is looking to compete with movie giants GV and Cathay, I’m sure they’ll find great ways to attract customers. I’ve been hearing rumours that they might have an opening discount special for movie tickets! It’ll be a great excuse to catch a movie later this week :)
I was also pleased to note that there are two coffee outlets at Nex, both of which are my absolute favourites – Spinelli’s and Starbucks. (sorry coffee bean!) Spinelli’s I love because of their Original Spin, and to celebrate the coming Christmas season, they’ve introduced a Gingerbread Spin which I’ll probably try later in the month! Seeing that Starbucks was extremely crowded today (and well, there’s a free coffee offer tomorrow! look at our sidebar!), I decided to sit down at Spinelli’s for a quiet read.
I love these bumming around days. It’s sad that with job interviews coming up, they’re coming to an end. But I shall enjoy them to the fullest while I can!
Ginnifer Goodwin – the alliteration of “G” in her name just struck me as odd, somewhat unique (yes, that’s what goes on in the head of an English Lit. major) and for sometime I’ve been admiring how well she carries off the pixie bob on the red carpet, without thinking of it until I realised that this gorgeous girl was the same blah looking actress from He’s Just Not That Into You (2009), which happens to be one of my favourite rom-coms of all time.
So curious me googled her and whoa, this girl has tried tons of hairstyles, more so than any other celeb I’ve known (boring Jennifer Aniston, boring!) but I don’t blame those celebs for sticking to the hairstyles which suit them best. Moreover, Ginnifer’s experimentation with these hairstyles have only proved what beauty experts have been telling us all along. There is a complementary hairstyle for each different face shape, and that hairstyle DOES make a huge difference. check it out!
Ginnifer Goodwin’s heart shaped face obviously goes best with her short haircuts. I love the pixie bob the best on her! Normally I’d think that most girls would look good with long hair, but she looks quite forgettable with her long tresses. That look has been way overdone by so many celebrities. That said, I can’t be surprised now that Rihanna has gone slightly crazy with her hairdos of late, but for the girl on the street, here’s some guidelines to help you find that perfect hairstyle
- Discover your face shape. Often, we just look in the mirror and gauge for ourselves – which is not entirely reliable because we all have perceptions of ourselves that we’d like to believe. So for starters, measure the width and length from the tip of the hairline to your chin, of your face. Taking width as W and length as L (yes i’m going into algebraic equations here, the horror!) if …
- L is 1.5times that of your W, you have an Oval face. if L exceeds 1.5 x W, you have an Oblong face
- if L = W, you have a Round face. Then measure your cheekbones (C) and Jawline (J). If C > J substantially, you have a Heart face. If C = J almost exactly, you have a Square face. If you’ll notice, the measurements of a square face and a round face don’t differ that much- this is most usually determined by bone structure. Those with round faces have rounder edges to the face, those with square faces have a more defined bone structure that is visible to the eye (I don’t mean skeletal..)
To illustrate the difference between a square face and a round face:
Two skinny stars – but can you see the difference in their bone structure that determines their face shape? their W and L might be similar, but it’s about the curves of their face that create the face shape. I feel so motivated to go to a good hairstylist right now, after careful measurements I’m positively sure that I’ve got an oval face (my W = 14 and L = 20, making L/W = 1.43) which means lucky me, I should be able to carry off any hairstyle I want. So it’s experimentation time! I’ve had my long tresses for quite some time :)
- ACT ON IT. Now that you know what face shape you have, google it! It’s just a few measly words you have to type and a few exercises for your right index finger. easy peasy. There are TONS of hairstyling websites on the web, so don’t feel or be constrained by any one’s recommendation. Most importantly, cross reference these websites against each other to make sure that the hairstyle you’ve picked is one that many others agree suits your face shape. With the internet, some recommendations can be very unreliable
- Find Inspiration Pictures of your favourite celebrities who sport these hairstyles, and if you can, bring them to your hairdresser so your hairdresser knows precisely what you want. Certainty and confidence will lessen the tears at the end of a drastic change (if any).