Sunday, 28 February 2010

Back in a bit..

Hey everyone!

Here's wishing all of you a happy Chap Goh Mei (anyone wanna throw in an orange for me?) Just a quick note to say that I've arrived in Singapore and am currently settling in..internet is still intermittent,so it might take a couple of days till blogging is back to normal.

In the meantime though,I've already spotted a couple of products that have got me pretty stay tuned! :)

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Memories of CNY 2010…

It just struck me that this Sunday is already Chap Goh Mei (the final day of Chinese New Year) – gosh, where did almost two weeks go? Anyway, I thought I’d just share a few of the memorable bits of this CNY…didn’t take that many photos, but I did ermm…pick up a few nice things along the way too! :D

This was a gift from my cousin – a shopping bag that collapses into a strawberry-shaped pouch! (Xin is so going to want to attack me for it when she sees this knowing her penchant for strawberries!)

One of the (many) testaments of Paris’ ‘bad’ influence – after reading her review on Steam Cream and trawling through the Soap n’ Sorbet website, I ended up picking up one for myself in a gorgeous red and silver pattern as well as a sample set…the tin's very Valentine-y, you reckon?

In case any of you are interested, Rootote Australia is having an additional 40% off their sale items as they’re clearing stock at the moment. Stocks are limited and shipping’s expensive, but a few of us lumped our orders together (additional discount offsets the shipping) – and one of the items I picked up was an adorable Rootote pouch. Not sure when this sale is ending as they don’t mention it, but if you want to pick one up better hurry cos stocks are running out super fast!

This is a first for me – Tiger Dance! Haha…yes, I know that sounds quite wrong since it sounds quite close to “Tiger Show” (which is indubitably more risqué!) but apparently it's some 'special' thing they do only during the Year of the Tiger or something like that. They came to the office to do the requisite clanging and banging to bring good luck – only question is, since the tiger looks like he’s sitting at the computer, can he complete my Word Doc for me while he’s at it? ;)

A few of the usual culprits in our group went for ‘lou sang’ on Sunday night – it’s a pity a number of us couldn’t make it, but we had fun nonetheless. It never fails to amaze me how thoughtful and determined some of the others are – Plue had come directly from the airport nursing an upset stomach, just to see us for a bit and pass us some souvenirs from Bangkok! (It smells amazing by the way, can’t wait to try it out). Thanks dearie, hope you feel better already!

The other one that couldn’t make it for dinner was Connie, but she came all the way from her dinner to join us for coffee afterwards with a curious pouch dangling from her neck – it turned out to be her sugar glider Lexi! Super cute, and since she’s nocturnal…very active!! Can’t remember how many times she went scampering all over the place with us scrambling to scoop her up. Absolutely adorable though… :D

What are the more memorable moments from your CNY this year? Share share!

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Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Ending CNY smelling like a bed of roses (literally)…

How was everyone’s Valentine’s Day? For me, it was erm…Chinese New Year, so no big deal. Of course, having CNY and Valentine’s falling on the same day probably threw a spanner in the works for some, so a little ‘kiss and make up’ might be in order. And since the lunar new year is a time to make any amends, why not start it on a good note?

Was looking at the Armani fragrance coffrets, and I must say they look rather gorgeous – the sets are all dressed up too, especially Giorgio Armani’s signature fragrance Idole d’Armani and Armani Code Femme. I wouldn’t say no to one of these, and I don’t know anyone who would say no… :D

For the ladies, the coffret sets sparkle with satin ribbon and diamonds (what was that bit about a girl’s best friend?) and each EDP set comes with a complementing shower gel and body lotion.

Idole d’Armani – crisp notes of the Turkish Delight rose

Armani Code – an orange blossom scent infused with jasmine and honey

Emporio Armani Diamonds – a rose base complemented with raspberry, lychee, amber and wood notes

I suppose I shouldn’t forget the guys either eh? :p They get an aftershave balm and shower gel with each coffret set along with the EDT.

Acqua di Gio – a cult favourite with its fresh citrus and musky base notes

Armani Code for him – a woody oriental scent with citron, olive flower, gaiac wood and tonka bean notes

Emporio Armani Diamonds for Men – woody notes with an icy blast

As I understand it, all these sets are available from February onwards so if you happened to commit a faux pas over CNY/ Valentine’s (and even if you didn't)………you know what to do before CNY is over this Sunday! :D (and if you want to slip one in your basket for me as well, I’d be mighty happy too!)

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Monday, 22 February 2010

Happy CNY, I’m back and of other things…

Missed me? :)

I might be rather behind on the CNY greetings, but since it’s still within the allocated 15 days of Chinese New Year (and the Hokkiens are celebrating their New Year with a profusion of fireworks last night) I guess it’s not too late! :D

Had a lovely break up in Genting with dad’s side of the family just before CNY and have remained blissfully OFF-line (not counting Twitter!) for the past week. Call it de-teching or whatever, but sometimes you gotta do it, right?

Anyway, all the photos, online shopping and CNY pressies will follow in a bit…I’ve got a bit of news to share with you all. Some of you would have already known but for those that don’t, this is the other reason I’ve been notably absent:

I’ve actually accepted a mid-term contract job with my former agency – in Singapore. Will be moving down this Friday (please please don’t ask me if I’ve packed…the answer’s still the same as it was three weeks ago – not even close!) and for the next 6 months, will be traveling back and forth between Malaysia and Singapore.

On the bright side:
- the job comes with a SGD paycheck…yay for bigger buying power! :D
- access to brands that are only available in Singapore (ask nicely and I might play mule!)
- access to online shopping sites that don’t deliver to Malaysia but do to Singapore (why, I don’t know…but ah well!)

On the down side:
- having to leave my mutt behind…she’s been allowed to sleep in my room every night for the past week because of it, and is being spoilt rotten!
- missing Malaysian food…’nuff said!
- pocket damage from abovementioned shopping

A rather big start to the Tiger Year eh? *winks* But never fear, the site will continue on as per normal – after all, it turns a momentous THREE in a couple of months (momentous for me anyway!)…and I’ve got some more surprises in store for that time…and yes, you’ll just have to wait and see…

Back to our regular program after this! :D

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1 in Pear…

While walking around Bangsar Shopping Centre a few weeks back, I happened to go into the Kiehl’s outlet and found out that their Limited Edition flavoured lip balms from Christmas were going at just RM35 each. From experience, I found that Kiehl’s does a lovely rendition of Pear, which led to a purchase of this little baby here.

Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1 is a SPF 4 sunscreen petrolatum skin protectant that temporarily protects and helps relieve chapped or cracked lips as well as helps protect lips from the drying effects of wind and cold weather. Apply liberally to lips and allow an excess of the balm to be absorbed.

The Verdict:
After taking a whiff of the pear lip balm, I’m hooked – it smells exactly like the Pear Tree Corner Bath and Shower Liquid Body Cleanser I got a few months back, and oh, a heavenly smell that is. The balm itself is great for soothing chapped lips, and actually comes out smelling and looking like pear jelly, not unlike the baby food you buy at the supermarket in jars.

Texture-wise it goes on baby smooth, and if my lips are dry or chapped (which usually happens when I haven’t drunk enough water) it brings almost immediate relief. The only downside to this is the scent…it smells so yummy I can’t help but lick it off ever so often! :D Otherwise, if I leave it alone it holds up pretty well and application twice a day gives me nice smooth lips.

Incidentally, I’ve also tried mixing a bit of it with salt and using it as a lip scrub – and I’d really recommend it for anyone who’s got flaky lips! The combination works wonders, not to mention leaves my lips nicely prepped for just a smidgen of gloss for that ‘you know you want to try it’ look… ;)

Kiehl’s Limited Edition Christmas Lip Balms include Cranberry and Mint in the mix – Cranberry was sold out at the BSC outlet, but may still be available at other outlets, while Mint is still readily available.

While browsing the Kiehl’s international website, I came across three new flavours that have just been released – Mango, Vanilla and Coconut. I’m wondering what the Mango will be like…and I know certain people will be bonkers for the Vanilla one given their penchant for that flavour. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see! :D

Kiehl’s Lip Balm #1 retails at RM39, while the Limited Edition flavours are available at RM35 each while stocks last.

Rating: 4 / 5
Value: $$$

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Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Are you getting your dad anything for CNY/ Valentine’s this year?

Valentine’s Day/ Chinese New Year is just a few days away! :D Now, I'm sure most of you would have already gotten a gift for your significant other, but what the OTHER man in your life? I'm talking about dear old could always be nice and get dad a Valentine’s Day gift too, right? :D (or Chinese New Year gift in lieu of an angpow maybe?)

Well, if you've been contemplating it and are still racking your brains, maybe these sets from Lancome could give you a nudge in the right direction.

Lancome Men UV Expert Neuroshield – RM160 (valued at RM274) and comes with Renergy 3D Yeux (5ml), Renergy 3D Firming Cream (5ml), Energiser Total Anti-Fatigue Concentrate (5ml)

If your dad is like mine and is practically married to his golf set (or other outdoor sports), this would make a good choice since it has a high anti-UV SPF50/PA+++ protection for effective UVA and UVB filtration. My dad’s still looking pretty good for his age despite his religious weekly golf sessions under the hot sun, which I attribute to his disciplined use of a really strong sunscreen! (and *ahem* a growing vanity of wanting to try new products! He actually comes and tries to raid my product stash! LOL!)

Lancome Renergy 3D Yeux – RM190 (valued at RM304) and comes with Renergy 3D Yeux (5ml), Renergy 3D Firming Cream (5ml) and Energizer Total Anti-Fatigue Concentrate (5ml)

For those in their 30s and 40s (I’m thinking this would be ideal for those men worried that they’re starting to look a little too ‘distinguished’ for their liking, or just feeling a little run-down) the Renergy 3D is designed to firm skin and help erase wrinkles…and is likened to having 25,000 micro-lifts on the skin surface.

At under RM200 each, they’re pretty good gifts without having to burn the bank. Personally I’ve given my parents a red packet each since I started working, but over the past few years it’s grown to include some products and other items as well so I might just pick up one for dad. (I’ll probably regret starting this when they start asking for cars and houses, but so far so good! >.<)

So, are you getting your dad anything for the festive season this year? :)

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Monday, 8 February 2010

These Are a Few Of My Favou-“RED” Things…

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens,
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens,
Brown paper packages tied up with strings,
These are a few of my favourite things…
* The Sound Of Music

It’s the start of the week once more – how was the weekend for all of you? Mine was rather mixed as I’m nursing a bit of an upset tummy (no doubt brought on by all the dinners and lunches), but I did manage to clear out most of my closet too and now I’ve got two garbage-bag-sized bags of things to donate to charity, plus one whole bag that’s just going in the bin. Yay for cleaning and Operation Declutter!

Wondering about the title and lyrics above? Well, since Mondays are typically blue, I thought I’d brighten it up a bit and share with you some of my favou-‘red’ things – nothing like a splash of red to ring in Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day eh?

(L-R: NYX Diamond Sparkle Lipgloss in Paprika Sparkle, Sportsgirl Lipgloss in ‘Talk of the Town’, NYX Girls Gloss in Frosted Plum and Stage Wondergloss in Persephone)
I think by now it’s pretty obvious I’m a serious lipgloss fan, and there’s nothing like a nice red gloss to kick off Chinese New Year. Where previously I’d have shied away from traffic-stopping red, this year…ah to heck with it, I’m going to stick my ruby-red lips out and enjoy it! I’m not beyond having red lipstick too, but you can hop over to Paris’ website for her signature red lips look! :D

(L-R: Stage Nail Colour in Glamorous, Revlon Nail Enamel in Red Hot Tamale and The Face Shop Nail Pleasure in #31)
Seems like this year I’ve suddenly gone onto a red spree. Nothing spells glamour like red nails (although a word of caution that short nails work best – long red nails just looks tacky!). I haven’t quite decided which shade I’ll go for just yet though…but that Red Hot Tamale is pretty eye-catching, no?

(Oriental pouch from Clarins and Envirosax in Mikado)
Doing the environment a favour just makes these two a couple of my favou-‘red’-est things (no such word, but you get what I mean!). I got the pouch during their launch of their Nude Inspiration collection – it even comes with a mirror built into the top flap, and as for the Envirosax – well, I just happened to fall in love with the pattern when I saw it. No missing me in a crowd, that one!

(Japanese blossoms flat wallet from Japan, red leather wallet from Bangkok)
More pouches and wallets – the flat wallet from Japan was the cutest thing I’d ever seen, and I still use it to hold my receipts and cards when I travel. The red leather wallet I happened to pick up during my December trip to Bangkok and seeing as how I’ll be doing a fair amount of commuting between Malaysia and Singapore over the next 6 months, this’ll come in handy!

Usually I’m not one to carry a bag in such a strong shade, but after being influenced by Tine and Geek (plus at the time Oroton was having a 50% sale) I ended up with a beet red Oroton, and have never looked back since. The quality and design are amazing, and it fills out so nicely that I can store heaps in it without looking like a bag lady.

What would CNY be without the traditional red packets?? :D For those that qualify, angpows help to defray the ermm…seasonal shopping during this period! (I still qualify, so bring it on!) Speaking of which, did you notice that angpow packets are always packed in stacks of eight?

(Clockwise from top left: Rosalind, Isabella and Cherry Lady – all from Sweet Contemplation Accessories)
If you’re not quite the type to go for red gloss, nail polish or bags and wallets, jewellery would probably be a more subtle option. I love drop earrings, and have a gorgeous pair of red vintage drop earrings that are going to make an appearance this CNY (haven’t worn them in a couple of years since I had an unfortunate run in with a brat that literally tried to rip my earring out…and nearly succeeded! Took a while for that one to heal up and re-pierce…*eeps*) but if you want something similar, head on over to Sweet Contemplation Accessories from 5 to 28 February 2010 to enjoy a 10% discount and free worldwide shipping with the voucher code VDAYCNY2010.

LOL…well, this isn’t really related, but I happened to get a SMS from Clinique asking me to collect this from their counter – fortune cookies! :D Since they came in a nice red box, I thought I’d throw it in for good measure.

Looking back, the lyrics from ‘My Favourite Things’ above could probably be rewritten to the following:

Lipstick and lipgloss with some crimson polish,
Envirosax and pouches so trees won’t all vanish,
Gorgeous red wallet, bag, angpows and bling(s),
These are a few of my favou-‘red’ things…

What’s your favou-‘red’ thing? :D

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Friday, 5 February 2010

Maybelline Volum’Express Magnum Mascara…

Ooo…it’s finally Friday!! :D How are all your plans for the weekend eh? For me, ermm…it’s probably going to be a whole weekend of eating since I’ve got lunch AND dinner appointments every day starting from tonight! (someone’s going to have to crowbar me into my cheongsam come CNY… :S)

Anyway, that aside I thought I’d (finally!) share my thoughts on the latest Maybelline mascara, the Volum’Express Magnum Waterproof Mascara. I’d been meaning to write about it for some time, but never managed to get decent photos of the mascara since I usually use it at night (and my night shot-taking skills are horrible)

Dramatic, magnified last effect of 10 times the volume, the Volum’Express Magnum Waterproof Mascara is Maybelline New York’s ultimate secret weapon. With the ingenious secret ingredient of the Collagen Formula as well as the new patented oversized Magnum Brush, this waterproof mascara breaks the volume barrier for killer lashes. The Collagen Formula plumps up and volumises the lashes by 10 times giving that luscious thick look. The Magnum Brush seeks out even the smallest last to ensure fine wax dispersion, with a generous and fast charge, ensuring ultra thick lashes with absolutely no clumping.

The Verdict:
I must say the brush is pretty unique with shorter bristles on the inner curve of the wand but longer bristles on the outer curve, which is supposed to make for easier application and building up volume. When I first used this, I could not get it to apply smoothly and it clumped something AWFUL. However, since then I’ve found that as with most mascaras, there’s a knack to applying it.

It surprised me to discover that the Magnum mascara actually applies better when it’s just the tiniest bit dried (thanks to a tip from a couple of fellow bloggers) so what I actually do now is take out the wand and wave it around a couple of times before applying it to my lashes, which I think makes a big difference to the results.

As for Maybelline’s claim of volumisation by 10 times, I can’t actually vouch for that since it didn’t particularly make my lashes go ‘boom’ (the picture above is just two coats), but it did do a pretty good job providing some ‘oomph’ to my lashes (and even lengthened them a tiny bit).

However, on its waterproof claim this mascara is awesome! I accidentally took a swipe at my eyes a minute or so after application and the stuff didn’t budge until I was ready to take it off. As Paris mentioned, cleansing oil does not work well to take this mascara off – you’re better off using a simple eye makeup remover which I can vouch for. Using the makeup remover from Stage got it off without any fuss. :)

Overall I’d say this is a pretty good mascara particularly on its waterproof-ness, and once you get the hang of applying it you should have a breeze with it.

Maybelline New York Volum’Express Magnum Waterproof mascara retails at RM35.90 and is available at major supermarkets and personal care stores.

Rating: 3.5 / 5
Value: $$

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Wednesday, 3 February 2010

RMK Glosses = Love…

Hey hey, it’s Wednesday! (gee that rhymes…LOL!)

I got these two glosses from RMK from a friend last year during my birthday, and while RMK hasn’t particularly been a brand that I’ve paid much attention to I’m loving these two – the RMK Gloss Crayon and RMK Gloss Lips (the Gloss Lips is in a tester tube version so it looks different from the actual product)

RMK Gloss Lips:
Get sensual color with this lip gloss that goes on easily and leaves your lips looking beautiful. With a wide range of colors to choose from, it's easy to find the right RMK Lip Gloss for you. Comes in 20 colours.

RMK Gloss Crayon:
A brand new paradigm in lip coloring, with a playful crayon design that hides a sophisticated level of functionality. With one bold stroke, color just seems to leap off the crayon and melt into your lips, but RMK Gloss Crayon is equally adept at drawing natural-looking lines. Comes with a specially-designed sharpener. Comes in 6 colours

My RMK Gloss Crayon is in Coral Pink, which is a nice nude-y shade with great colour payoff (albeit a little more coral than I’m usually used to), while the Gloss Lips is in Shiny Rose Pink and this is where it gets a little amusing – in the tube, the gloss looks rose-y…when squeezed out it looks darker than in the tube…but when applied it becomes a shimmery gloss with just a hint of colour. Then again, RMK’s lip glosses have been known to be pretty sheer so I guess this shouldn’t come as a surprise. That aside though, they actually look pretty good layered on together! :D

On the left are my bare lips (eeps!), in the middle is just one coat of Gloss Crayon, and on the right topped off with the Gloss Lips. I dunno about you, but I like the result! :D They last pretty long too, so there's not much to not like about this combination.

RMK Gloss Crayon and RMK Gloss Lips retail at RM75 and RM78 respectively and are available at all RMK counters.

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