Friday, 27 August 2010

Out for a bit...

Hey ladies, just a quick note that I'll be hopping on a plane to Sandakan in a couple of hours - yup, gonna be reconnecting with nature for a couple of days with family and friends (and squeeze in some good seafood while I'm at it of course!)

Will be back on Sunday...y'all have a good weekend, and for those fortunate enough to get the public holiday on Friday, have an awesome long weekend! :)

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Sasa Blogger Tea Session…

A couple of weeks back, I got an invite from Bob to attend a Sasa tea party for bloggers at the Delicious Café at Marc Residence. Now I dunno about the rest of you, but my first impression of Sasa way back when it first opened (believe it or not, Sasa’s been in Malaysia for 12 years already!) wasn’t very good simply because their attendants used to be most irritating, following me around like a shadow and launching into a full sales spiel everytime I even reach out for a product.

I have to admit, although some of their salespeople still make me cringe, they are getting better – especially the ones at the Sasa Select stores. At this event though, there weren’t any pushy salespeople…just some Sasa executives, a couple of makeup artists, a bunch of bloggers and a whole lot of pink!

Am pretty thankful I had Connie around as my ‘plus one’, and it was great to see Bob again after so long. For those of you that don’t remember, he was the trainer from inuovi that got me hooked on false eyelashes – after all, the wager was that if he could teach me to apply falsies on my own, I’d buy them! (needless to say, he won the bet)

After games and some Q&A (no pics of that, although I will say some really got into the spirit of it – we nearly had chairs flying across the room!), we had tea before getting to the makeup demo…and the selection was pretty good too!

Looked yummy, no? But on to the main reason I went (besides finding out more about Sasa of course), which was to support Bob Mubarak, who was doing a makeup demo.

Here’s a useful tip: Blush should be applied to the apples of your cheeks (I think we all knew that already) but, don’t let it fall below your nose as it’ll look a bit ‘auntie’… :D I went back and tried it – and yes, a flush across the cheeks just on the apples makes you look much younger.

There were a few products on display, some of which caught my eye. I was particularly taken by The Balm’s Mary-Lou Manizer which was included in the awesome goodie bag along with a lot of other products…slowly getting around to them, to be sure. :)

With Connie and Bob…see Bob’s hot pink ‘brooch’? It’s actually handmade! (Bob, if you’re reading this, I want one!) We were all told to have a ‘touch of pink’ on, so no surprises for guessing what pink I had on – it was my Mr Men Little Miss shirt…hehe…

And what event wouldn’t be complete without a group picture? As you can see, some really went all out on the pink factor, most amusing to be sure. You can read Connie’s take on the event here.

If you want to find out more about Sasa, you can check them out on Facebook.

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Thursday, 19 August 2010

Fitflop Pietra makes my heart do fit flops! :D

All thanks (or no thanks?) to Paris and her original writeup on Fitflops, I’d been dying to get a pair for the longest time but never managed to bring myself to fork out the moolah for them. Who in their right mind would spend RM300 on a pair of slippers?

Ermm…well, it took me less than a year to grab myself (*cough* succumb to *cough*) a pair of Fitflops from the Pietra range simply because they were 30% off during the Great Singapore Sale, and after wearing them for a few months…well, why don’t you read on to find out? *wink*

The Fitflop Pietra is very possibly the prettiest Fitflop sandal so far – it sports a sleek metallic microfiber-lined upper embellished with three resin jewel stones down the toe line. Built on a slimmed-width version of the muscle-toning Microwobbleboard™ midsole, you not only look fabulous and feminine, but you get a workout while you walk™ Note: this style is best-suited to slim-to-average width feet.

The Verdict:
I got the Fitflop Pietra in bronze, size 38. Now as a bit of background, I usually wear anything from a size 39 – 41 for most shoes (size 7 – 9) depending on the cut, but since the Fitflops need a snug fit around the strap, I settled for the size 38 since my foot was sliding around a little bit in the size 39.

Paris had mentioned that you weren’t supposed to massively break them in the first few times as your feet needed to get used to them, but since I had to bring them with me and I didn’t have enough space in my bag, what did I do? Wear them of course. Downside was, I ended up wearing them for the better part of a day – from my house to the airport, wandering through the airport, standing in the train a good 40mins to get home, not counting the luggage I had to carry with me (oh knight in shining armor, where for were thou at that time?)

No surprise then that my feet ached like hell the next day in my usual heels. Surprisingly, this happened the next few times I wore them, which made me wonder whether (a) I am a really BAD walker, (b) I got a dud pair or (c) my feet are totally out of shape!

To digress a bit, the star of this Fitflop is in the Microwobbleboard™ (above, patent pending) which has a high-tech explanation, but basically gives your leg muscles a good workout while you walk. It also works to spread out your weight more evenly which you can see in the picture below.

Anyhow, back to my experience…after getting used to the Fitflops (they loosened out a tiny bit after wearing, so they’re now a nice fit) I now wear them pretty much everywhere. To tell the truth, I think I've almost forgotten how to walk without them - they support my (barely existent) arches something amazing. The surprising result crept up on me though, which was losing the most irritating and unsightly ‘saddlebag’ at the back of my thighs!

The pictures are not of me obviously, but you get a good idea of what I mean. The back of my legs are now almost FLAT, and I could not be happier. Lost a good kilo and a half in the process too over 6 weeks without any changes to my lifestyle, and while I’ve still got plenty more to lose, what’s not to like? :)

After seeing me with the Fitflops and seeing my bottoms (that’s pants and skirts!) get looser in the seat, my mum and a friend got me to buy another two pairs to bring back to Malaysia for them…LOL…and to top it off, being the naughty co-influencer, I wrangled Kahani into getting a pair for herself too when she was in Singapore a few weeks back! *evil laughter*

The Pietra is the prettiest looking design amongst the Fitflops to date, but I’m hoping they’ll come out with some nicer, less bulky designs soon. The Pietra may be quite acceptable as a sandal, but they definitely won’t cut it as work footwear.

Fitflops are available in both Singapore and Malaysia, but there’s a notable difference in prices for both countries. Paris has a pretty useful post on comparison prices for Fitflops in Malaysia and Singapore here.

My verdict? Heck, I love these babies! :D They may have been expensive, but for the results I got, I reckon these babies are worth their weight in GOLD.

The Fitflop Pietra is currently available at Isetan Wisma Atria on Orchard Road at SGD$119.90 per pair. Alternatively, you can get them from Isetan in Malaysia at approximately RM300+ per pair.

Rating: 5 / 5
Value: $$$

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Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Origins Organics Foaming Facewash…

Once again, it’s the middle of the week – this week seems to be flying by so fast, can someone please help me slow it down? LOL…

Origins Organics is the first line of prestige skin care products to be certified under the USDA National Organic Program. As part of this line, the Origins Organics Foaming Facewash gently, yet thoroughly removes surface debris and environmental impurities without over-drying skin. Made from 73% organic ingredients, this facewash not only smells great but also swiftly removes all but dark, waterproof eye makeup. The formula includes Aloe Leaf, Organic Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, Jojoba Seed Oil and Organic’s own blend of Organic Clove, Rose, Lavender, Patchouli and Red Thyle Essential Oil. Best for combination skin.

The Verdict:
I first tried out the Origins Organics range when I was gifted a bottle of their foaming facewash as part of a birthday present. I’ll admit that I didn’t like it too much when I first used it since the smell didn’t appeal to me – don’t get me wrong, the smell is great if you like ‘green’ hippie smells (after all, it has patchouli in it!) but the scent definitely took some getting used to on my part since I’m more inclined towards citrusy scents.

However, after bringing it to Singapore with me and using it daily (I finished the bottle in less than 4 months which ended abruptly, but I shan't start again on my rant about opaque bottles!), my opinion of this facewash has changed somewhat. Previously, I felt that the facewash didn’t leave my face entirely clean, but I think it may have been due to my switching around different facial washes, not to mention a mental block I had about having so much oil in my face wash – after all, as you can see from the picture above, it does come out looking like oil, no?

After regular use of this, I find that it actually does the job quite well. It doesn’t completely remove waterproof makeup but I wasn’t expecting it to since they had already made it pretty clear in the description (don’t you like it when companies are honest about their products and its capabilities?)

One pump is enough per use, and using it an average of once a day it lasted me just over 4 months (taking into account that I’d used up some prior to coming over to Singapore) which is not too bad. If I’m not mistaken, this retails for about RM60+, but since it was a gift I’m not too sure. Can anyone help me out?

Origins Organics Foaming Facewash comes in a 100ml pump bottle.

Rating: 4 / 5
Value: N/A

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Friday, 13 August 2010

Because Fridays are for being frivolous… :)

Once again it’s a Friday, and not just any Friday…it’s Friday the 13th! :O But that’s not gonna bother me, cos something arrived in the mail yesterday…

If you had been following my Twitter, this should come as no surprise – I placed an order for the iPad two weeks back, and it (well, they…I ordered two) arrived yesterday at my office safe and sound. It was going at SGD$878 for the 32GB WiFi only version on the Apple store in Singapore, which is pretty decent.

It took a fair bit of fiddling to get it up and running, simply because being an Apple noob, I was fascinated at every step of the way from how the charger was assembled to err…having some problems installing iTunes on my PC. But all that was easily sorted.

And voila! I picked up the iPad casing as well, which is convertible into a stand if I want to watch movies on it…hehe…pretty smooth and sleek. As for black, well, we’ll just say it’s easier to maintain this way and leave it at that, k?

I went a little nuts on the app store downloading content for the iPad, but they’re all free so far. I’ll leave the paid apps for when I’m sane enough to decide on what I want. But for now, it’s just fun and games.

My favourite one so far? This Archie comics app! Hehe…kinda reminiscent of my childhood, but it came with 6 free comics (the rest you have to pay of course), and that’ll definitely come in handy when I fly back to KL tonight. Firefly has this nasty tendency to run late, so this should keep me company in any event.

This weekend, I’ll be headed to Batu Pahat with the family for a mini-reunion – as luck would have it, we’re going to be staying at the infamous ‘Katerina Hotel’ which got its infamy thanks to a certain prominent politician (Chua Soi Lek) and his indiscretions at said hotel…oops…

What will you ladies be up to? :D

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Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Crabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Scrub Cleanser…

So fast and it's already the middle of the week - hands up, who’s tried the Crabtree & Evelyn Scrub Cleansers? I brought this down with me to SG to use, and it’s been a right interesting experience with this cleanser that’s for sure…

Crabtree & Evelyn Scrub Cleanser is a deep cleansing hand wash with a blend of plant-based cleansers and natural exfoliants to cleanse deeply whilst polishing away roughness and impurities. Hands are left looking and feeling soft, radiant, and more youthful. Free of parabens, lauryl sulfates, mineral oil, and propylene glycol.

The Verdict:
Given my love for the La Source and Gardeners scent (the range, not an actual gardener!), I’m glad that this smells exactly like the rest of its respective range. This lovely cleanser smells of a blend between fresh green clover, lavender, sage, rosemary and thyme (at least, that’s what the website says – I just know it smells heavenly).

The scrub cleanser comes in a glossy metal pump bottle which is pretty solid, but alas opaque again. What is it with companies that don’t want you to know how much more is left in the bottle/ tube?!?

Anyway, coming back to the scrub cleanser itself – when pumped out, it’s got iridescent green flecks scattered throughout the cleanser as well as some intimidating-looking scrub grains! No need to fear though, once you start scrubbing the grains melt along with the rest of the cleanser to form a nice paste. Needless to say, the whiff of Gardeners you get while scrubbing away is pretty therapeutic as well.

Unlike the usual soaps, this scrub cleanser has a pretty high moisturizer content so my hands don’t feel dry or cracked afterwards. All I need to do is rub a little hand cream in and my hands are good to go! :)

I love using this in the morning to get me going for the rest of the day…*sniffs hands* The scrub cleanser is available in a variety of scents, so go ahead take a whiff at them and let me know which one you love best! :D

Crabtree & Evelyn Gardeners Scrub Cleanser retails at approximately RM85 for a 250ml pump bottle at all Crabtree & Evelyn outlets. (can someone help me out with the pricing? I can’t for the life of me remember how much this cost!)

Rating: 4.5 / 5
Value: $$

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Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Puffiness be gone! :D

How was the weekend? Singapore had a long weekend thanks to National Day, but OMG if the traffic wasn’t completely horrendous coming back (I took a bus). If you had followed my tweets, you’d have read my rantings and ravings on the traffic and *ahem* Singapore drivers, but beggars can’t be choosers I guess.

With that, I only got back to my place about 9.30pm, effectively killing my sleep time yet again. However, on the upside, I at least remembered this lovely eye massage serum I’d gotten from Clinique a while back which I religiously applied before going to sleep.

Clinique All About Eyes Serum De-Puffing Eye Massage is an instantly cooling rollerball that deposits a liquid gel-serum to help massage and refresh puffy eyes on contact, reducing the appearance of dark circles and brightening your eyes. Think of it as a new solution for eye puffs – refreshingly non-irritating. Allergy tested, 100% fragrance free, oil-free, non-clogging, dermatologist and ophthalmologist tested. Safe for contact lens wearers.

The Verdict:
It would seem that the Clinique people have finally caught the hint with this Eye Serum (the above name is way too long!) in terms of design, since now I can see exactly how much is left in the tube. :) Nothing more irritating than using it halfway to find out its finished and you don’t have a replacement.

I’ve tried a few other eye roll-on formulas so far (including the famed Garnier Brightening Eye Roll-On) but so far, this has been one of the best. Where the Garnier under eye roll-on took a while to see the results, I saw reduced puffiness in just under 15 minutes. Better yet, the formula is scent-less, is very easy to work with and absorbs quickly, which is great.

The Clinique Eye Serum contains Amentoflavones and Humulus Lupulus Extract, both of which are ingredients with soothing properties. When added together with caffeine to reduce the appearance of irritation and puffiness, the results are pretty good.

You can actually reapply this anytime you need a pick-me-up for your eyes, but I don’t like the thought of my eye serum picking up my makeup into the tube when I use it during the day, so I tend to roll it onto my finger and dab under my eyes instead. At night after my shower, I apply it directly using the roller. Oh, and did I mention it’s always fun to play “rolling rolling” with the little roller ball (not too hard though!)

It’s rather pricey at RM125, but well worth the money for decent results. At least, I think so anyway… :D

Clinique All About Eyes Serum De-Puffing Eye Massage retails at RM125 and is available at all Clinique counters nationwide.

Rating: 4 / 5
Value: $$

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Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Funky Farm Hand Wash – how about them apples?

How’s this for a random mid-week post – apple scented handwash! :D I came across these handwashes in Watsons a while back…how could I resist the pretty pink and green pump bottle, not to mention the adorable piggy on the front??

Funky Farm’s enchanting collection of character hand washes will leave your skin feeling soft and smooth. (I’ve only come across the apple one so far though in Singapore) For range of handwashes available, visit the website. (this is the UK version which differs in terms of bottle design but smells the same – I think the one we have is cuter though!)

The Verdict:
If you ever have people who adore the smell of apples but hate washing their hands, this would be the PERFECT handwash to get them to do so…this smells absolutely scrumptiously appleicious (is there such a word?) I’ve been using it for a couple of months already, and it’s pretty addictive.

Try as I might, I really can’t find anything to NOT like about this handwash. As far as a liquid handwash goes, it does the job…from a scent perspective, it smells good enough to eat, and the fragrance lingers on gently for a few minutes afterwards which is great…price-wise, it’s also pretty affordable especially when they go on offer.

I’ve even used it in a pinch for bath soap (not supposed to, I know…but what to do, I ran out of shower foam!) and sigh…let’s just say if they ever brought the bodywash range in and it smells exactly like this, I’m buying it…*heaven*

Funky Farm Hand Wash retails at approximately SGD3.50 for a 500ml bottle (I bought mine at SGD4.50 for 2 bottles during a promotion) at selected Watsons outlets.

Rating: 5 / 5
Value: $$$

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Tuesday, 3 August 2010

It's all about the bags… :D

Bags, bags, bags…is there anyone out there that doesn’t have one? Big or small, sling or clutch, I betcha every one of you own at least one (err…whether you use it regularly or not is another matter!)

I have a notable bag for every job I ever had…and yes, it’s four… :D How many can you recognize just from the dustbags?

That said, I’m not a bag snob – I do have a rather large number of handbags that I’ve accumulated over the years, but I tend to commemorate my milestones with a significant item (it doesn’t have to be a BIG purchase, even a sentimental item does the job). It just so happened that in the case of bags, they’re linked to my working life! I guess that makes sense, considering I’d need to be earning an income to afford them, right? :p

First up was a Coach White Leather Poppy Demi to mark my first job as a fresh graduate. Being the lowly-paid grunt I was, I didn’t actually buy this – it was a gift from my dad who picked up a Coach each for me and my mum during his business trip.

The story behind this was quite funny – he was in Hawaii for a conference, and it so happened he tagged along with some colleagues to a Coach warehouse sale. Being the loving husband, he called my mum up and asked her if she’d ever heard of Coach. And my mum, being blessedly unaware of brands, thought he’d asked her about…'cockroach'!

That conversation ended once she told him to call me instead, and the rest is history. Can’t do better than this eh? *wink*

The interior of the bag is a gorgeous deep red with a single zippered pocket, while the strap can be converted into a shoulder or wristlet strap. I absolutely fell in love with the red floral poppy accent on the front. My dad may not be too fashion savvy, but this choice was absolutely PERFECT.

Next up – after a couple of years at the local agency, I moved on to a global agency. With that, came the first purchase of a soft buttery leather bag from Oroton in Australia – the Medium Alpine Hobo bag in red!

The Oroton Medium Alpine Hobo was pretty popular among my group as well – Tine has the exact same one (thankfully she didn’t object to me getting the same bag, otherwise I would have had to pick something I didn’t like quite as much!) while Paris has the one in white.

The interior features Oroton’s classic ‘O’ patterned fabric with one zippered pocket and two open smaller pockets which I usually use for my phone and keys.

This bag is a twist on the classic Oroton shape, which combines all the functionality needed in an everyday bag while its attention to detail are perfect – I absolutely fell in love with the tuck and fold magnetic closure.

After Oroton, I had my eyes set on a Radley. Working next to the Robinsons in Midvalley didn’t help, what with their pretty displays and trademark Scottish terrier on the bags. Problem was, it was massively overpriced in Malaysia. Truth be told, if a good friend hadn’t willingly offered to buy and carry it back for me, I probably would have succumbed to the exorbitant local prices sooner or later. Thank goodness when I changed jobs to a local firm, I left the traffic jams of the

As it is, I ended up getting something from the most current collection at the time, which was a Radley Kempsey Hobo bag in pink. It was a bargain at £180 (compared to the >RM1,300 for items that were 1-2 seasons behind in Malaysia)

The slouchy bag with the hidden magnetic fastening just called out to me, as did the stitching. And how could you not love the little touches like this?

Inside the bag is where the Radley really stands out – just check out the patchwork pattern! Also, apart from the similar zippered + 2 open pockets my Oroton had, this one also comes with a separate lanyard clip for my keys. No rummaging around the bag for them anymore!

Of course, I’m sure you all remember that earlier this year I transferred over to Singapore to work (technically, it’s for the same company as my second job, but hey, different country!). All thanks to a GSS shopping weekend with Paris and Pinkelle, I ended up with a Tod’s

While we were wandering about the Tod’s in Paragon, this lilac number just dug its evil tendrils into me. For one, purple is my favourite colour. Secondly, after first touch I couldn’t stop stroking the soft bag…gee, I’m such a sucker for these things! All I did was try it on for size in the mirror, and from then on I was sold.

Again, don’t sell the power of detailing short – I ended up with a G-Bag Bauletto from the Spring-Summer Collection in lilac. This particular collection had a lot of pale colours which were gorgeous.

The interior of the G-Bag is extremely spacious, but couldn’t be more simple with one zippered pocket. Not really practical for someone like me who carries a lot of nonsense in her bags, but this is where my bag organizer – the Roo Carriage – comes in really handy. But that’s for another post… :D

And there you have it – my four most notable bags to date. Not foreseeing any more major purchases for the time being (unless it's a Birkin which is still WAAAY out of my league, or there's something I'd literally gnaw off my arm and leg for...hmmm...) Now I’d love to hear from you ladies…what was your most memorable bag purchase?

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Monday, 2 August 2010

What’s next in pore packs?

First we had the ordinary white pore pack…then the stronger men’s version with menthol…followed by the black pore pack that let you clearly see all the gunk it pulled out from your nose.

You’d think Biore would stop at that, but amusingly no…now we have these variants!

The Lamune Soda variant has been around for a while in SG, while the Fruit Shop – White Grape version is pretty recent.

Just when I thought it couldn’t get any fruitier, I spotted a ‘Resort’ version just yesterday. I’m guessing it’s some tropical fruit version based on the casing?

I haven’t tried any of these versions, although I am curious as to what difference these pore packs make. As it is, using pore packs aren’t supposed to be that good for your pores to begin with – although they DO remove the blackheads (I can attest to that…the strip always looks disgustingly full after I use it) and most of us have a morbid fascination with comparing just how congested the strips are (you know you’ve done it!) but they can be rather harsh on the skin and can lead to enlarged pores.

That said, has anyone tried these, what are they like, and if you haven’t, does it pique your interest?

How's that for a random Monday bit? :D

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