Monday, 30 April 2012

Bailey Shops - L'Oreal Infallibles in Singapore!

Bailey - I had a rather busy weekend, but one of the highlights was finding out that L'Oreal has brought the Infallibles eyeshadows to Singapore! :D

This was the display spotted in BHG, and later in the afternoon I saw another one in Watsons, so they're here to stay. The Infallibles are priced at SG$14.90 each, but BHG is currently having sales of 20% off regular-priced items which saw the price drop to about SG$11.90..quite a good deal if you ask me! :)

There are 8 colours in total - Forever Pink, Eternal Black, Permanent Kaki, Endless Chocolat, All Night Blue, Hourglass Beige, Flashback Silver and Purple Obsession.

Hope your weekend was as fruitful as mine..tonight, Bea and myself will be off to Melbourne for a 2 week break - shopping time!! :D

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Friday, 27 April 2012

Giving Sleeping Beauty a run for her money with the Dermalogica Overnight Repair Serum…

About a month back, I was invited to hear more about the latest addition to the Dermalogica AGESmart family – the Overnight Repair Serum and was kindly given a bottle to try out. After using it for a few weeks now, I figured it was time to share my thoughts on this nifty little product.

Dermalogica Overnight Repair Serum is a powerful peptide serum with Argan and Rose oils to help stimulate cellular repair overnight. Maximise night time skin repair to help minimise fine lines and increase luminosity. Smooth this serum into skin or blend with your night time treatment cream for dramatic age-fighting benefits: the supercharged peptide serum helps stimulate collagen production to help firm and renew resilience while potent Argan and Rose oils revitalise lacklustre skin and smooth away fine lines. Free of artificial fragrances and colours.

The Verdict:
Design-wise, the serum comes in a small (but solid!) opaque screw-top bottle with a relatively large opening at the top as you can see from the picture above. However, dispensing the serum is a breeze – all you have to do is tip the bottle upside down (no need to shake, just be patient and the serum will come out in drops).

At first sniff, the serum actually has a pretty strong scent – I can’t quite put my finger on it, but I think it’s from the Vitamin E and Rose Hip Seed oil in the formula. It doesn’t bother me though, and feels a bit like aromatherapy since I feel quite relaxed after smelling this. To be honest, the serum should really be classified more as oil than a serum since it is essentially a runny oil (see above) and behaves as such.

The instructions recommend 4-6 drops for your face, but I believe 4 drops (which is the amount you see in my palm above) is more than sufficient for my face and neck especially when blended with my moisturiser. I’ve tried patting it directly into my skin and mixing it with my moisturiser, and both methods seem to work fine. The serum is absorbed quickly, and I wake up to almost glowing skin in the morning.

Given that I have a super oily T-Zone but dry cheeks, this serum has actually helped to even out the oilies somewhat so that I wake up to a less-oily T-Zone and nicely moisturised cheeks (Didn’t know you could use oils on oily skin right? I didn’t either!). Did I become a sleeping beauty? LOL maybe not, but my skin feels pretty darn close to it!

The Overnight Repair Serum is supposed to help increase skin elasticity, firmness and collagen renewal while minimising discolouration. I can’t say I’ve noticed drastic improvement in my skin texture in the past 3 weeks or so, but I’m majorly happy with the morning-after effect, the frown lines between my eyes have stayed away (despite major stress at work) and I reckon my jawline has gotten a teeny bit more defined (or maybe it’s a placebo effect, but either way I’m not complaining!)

Of course, if you want maximum results, Dermalogica recommends that you go for their free Face Mapping® skin analysis and AGE Smart® prescription, but for now I’m quite satisfied with the results from this serum and am happy to continue using it.

Ingredient list for those interested

As with most Dermalogica products, this serum doesn’t come cheap but it is worth the SG$138 you’d have to fork over. While 15ml may sound like a tiny amount, you only use a few drops at a time – I estimate this little bottle will last me a good 6 months at least.

Dermalogica Overnight Repair Serum retails at SG$138 for a 15ml bottle, and is available from all Dermalogica outlets or authorised spas and salons. Alternatively, it is also available from the Bellabox website.

Rating: 4 / 5
Value: $$$

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Monday, 23 April 2012

Budget Manicure with Color Combos – a not-so-bleak winter’s day…

If you’re wondering about the title, it’s because I couldn’t come up with a better title to describe this manicure – this really does describe the colour to a ‘T’ (or at least, it does in my opinion).

The colours I used were a grey creme and a bluish jelly polish with blue and silver glitter (I suck at descriptions!), both from Color Combos (shown above without and with flash). Why budget? Because Color Combos, which you can find at Sasa, retail at about RM5 per bottle. How’s that for cheap?

In terms of coverage, the grey creme worked great – what you see above is just one coat of polish.

Once the grey dried, I layered on two coats of the bluish glitter and finished with a coat of Seche Vite. What you end up with is something that looks like little flakes of snow on a grey wintry day – and I happen to love snow, so a grey winter with snow isn’t bleak right? Oh don’t mind me, I’m rambling here… :P

No flash

With flash

For the price, I really can’t complain…and they’ve lasted for over 4 days without chipping! :D Only problem is, now I'm pining for this kind of weather…who knows, maybe I'll get a dose of it in Melbourne?

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Friday, 20 April 2012

Say hello to Flawless Beauty with the April Bellabox…

This month’s Bellabox just reached me earlier this week due to delays, but I’m glad to report that the wait wasn’t in vain – and wondered why the box was so unusually heavy when I received it! (to be explained later)

Keeping in line with the month’s theme of Flawless Beauty, the products in the April Bellabox are all about giving you a flawless complexion. Let’s have a look!

The box contained the following items:
  • Enavose H2Osis Black Tea Quench Mask (15ml) – I’ve tried this before, you can go here if you’d like to read my thoughts on this.
  • Benefit Cosmetics Hello Flawless Oxygen Wow Liquid Foundation (5ml sample) – LOVED the packaging of this sample as it’s similar to the full-sized bottle, can’t wait to try it out!
  • Lemongrass House Lavender Shower Gel (30ml bottle) – I’m a big fan of Lemongrass House products (particularly their room sprays), and this was a nice size I can take on holidays.
  • AHAVA Hydrate essential day moisturiser (15ml) – haven’t tried any AHAVA products yet but have heard some nice things, so I’m looking forward to trying it.
  • Kinohimitsu Collagen Drink (2 bottles) – this was the reason the box was so heavy! These are supposed to be immensely popular, and a friend’s mother swears by these…worth giving it a go right?

The box also came with a number of vouchers, including a SG$5 voucher for Lemongrass House (I’ll definitely be using this!), a 1-for-1 special on brow arch service at Benefit (usually SG$22 per person), and a 1+1 treat on a Mineral Oxygen-Infusion facial from AHAVA (NP: SG$88).

What did you think of the contents, and are there any products in this box you’d like to try in particular? :D

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Tuesday, 17 April 2012

NEW: butter LONDON polishes and LIPPY now available in Singapore...

If you have been following my Twitter or Instagram (username: beetrice) feeds, you’d have seen this photo on Sunday where Rinnah and I went hunting for butter LONDON polishes based on a tip-off she’d seen online.

After much wandering around and hunting through all the racks, we found the small butter LONDON rack tucked away in the Basement of Taka – ensconced amongst the likes of L’Occitane and Korres.

If you want to get your hands on the shades, I’d suggest you head down immediately as stocks are very limited (what you see in the photo is all they have left, and that’s before we made our purchases!) However, they will be bringing in small stocks every 2-3 weeks depending on demand. Or at least, that’s what the rather amusing sales lady told us.

One good thing to note is that they’ve brought in the new LIPPY lipglosses and matching polishes which were only launched this month so if you’ve been wanting to get your hands on them, now’s your chance!

Top Row – Primrose Hill Picnic, Snog and Teddy Girl
Bottom Row – Trout and Yummy Mummy

butter LONDON polishes are 3-free, and the LIPPY products do not contain parabens, petroleum, phthalates, sulphates or bismuth.

As for me, I walked away with 3 polishes – but only one is mine. Can you guess which one? :P (L-R: Disco Biscuit, Rosie Lee and The Old Bill)

butter LONDON polishes are retailing at SG$25, nail treatments are SG$32 and LIPPY lipglosses are SG$30 each respectively.

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Thursday, 12 April 2012

Fun Dupe for the Ciate Caviar Manicure…

Remember I wrote about the Ciate Caviar manicure about 2 weeks ago? Well, after seeing some shots of it in action (you can read the Brit Blogger’s review here) I was hankering to try it, but after seeing the GBP18 price tag (approximately SGD$36 or RM90!) and knowing it would take a long time to make it to Asia (if at all) I gave up on wanting to get them – it's not something I’d spend THAT much on just for novelty’s sake!

I couldn’t quite get past wanting to try it though, so when some sites suggested it could be duped using ordinary nail polish and microbeads, I decided to give it a try.

Ta-daahh!! Hehe…looks quite convincing, no? At least, I think so… :P

I used POP! shiny finish microbeads from American Crafts (pic above is courtesy of Rinnah who found the motherload!) which can be found at any well-stocked craft store – they come in a variety of colours as you can see above, but I stuck with black since it felt like the easiest to work with.

Getting them on was simple enough – start off with your regular base coat and two coats of your choice colour of nail polish. In my case, I was trying different shades to see the effect, hence ended up with green, red, purple and blue from my index to pinkie. :D

After this was the bead-sprinkling bit, which I cheated on. It was a bit difficult to get them to stick onto the polish even working one nail at a time, so I tried a few methods and found one that works. Apologies for the poor photo quality, it's not easy trying to manoeuvre a camera with wet nails...*grimace* 

If you’re interested in trying it, this is what worked for me:
  • First, apply base coat and two moderate coats of coloured nail polish on your nails. I recommend using bright, shimmery colours as this will stand out more compared to sedate ones. Let dry for about a minute.
  • Next, working one nail at a time apply a coat of Seche Vite to your nail, wait 5 seconds and then dunk your entire nail into the bottle of microbeads. This is a lot easier than sprinkling them onto a dish and having to clean up afterwards!
  • Once the beads have stuck to your nail, gently (and quickly!) brush off the excess and press the beads into your nail. Don’t worry if they roll around a bit as this will help it adhere faster, plus your beads may just get coated in some of the coloured nail polish for an added effect like what happened in my case. Do make sure you coat them all the way to the tip though, mine looked a bit bare at the tips because I didn’t get to them fast enough!
  • Repeat with the rest of your nails, then sit back and let them dry. Because I used Seche Vite, my nails dried in less than 15 minutes and were sturdy enough to last an evening without dropping off.
  • PS: If you want to try the original way, the instructions are in my previous post on the Caviar Manicure here.

Did I like them? Yes. They’re unusual enough to try for a fun night out, and definitely something different. To get the multi-colour bead effect, you can always buy a couple of colours and mix the beads but since this was just a trial run, I stuck to rolling the beads around in the polish to get the colour to shine through.

A point to note though, is that removing the caviar manicure or microbeads can be a pain but I found a way around that too (all for the sake of being thorough!) and people with itchy fingers will love this.

If you try to use nail polish remover directly on the beads, be warned that the colour will leech from the beads onto your nails and skin – in this case, it’ll turn them a dirty black. So save your skin, and instead pick off the beads first. Once you’ve picked off a small area, it’s easy (not to mention a bit addictive) to pick off the rest. And after you’re done with the beads (please do it over a container or dustbin, you don’t want them going everywhere!), you can use nail polish remover for the base polish as per normal. Easy peasy!

And there you have it, a dupe for the Ciate Caviar Manicure. Anyone else want to give this a go? *wink*

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Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Think it through – the Luxola Facebook contest boo-boo…

It all happened sometime last week (on the 3rd if I’m not mistaken) when this photo below was posted up on the Facebook page of local website Luxola.

They had decided to run a contest for Easter, stating that there were 16 eggs to be found on their website. The T&Cs which were stated in the image as well as the details said that the first 16 to find the Easter eggs on their website and link it on Facebook would win the product they had linked to, which looked easy enough.

However, about an hour into the contest, Luxola suddenly backtracked on their initial terms and conditions, and instead said that EVERYONE who linked their Easter eggs would be entered into a random drawing for the prize, which contradicted their initial terms as well as the details stated on the image.

Some of their comments ‘explaining’ why their terms and conditions were suddenly changed can be seen in the screenshots above (you can click on the images for larger versions). However, do note that the image is still that with the “first to link will win” line at the bottom (these posts were later deleted and the image cropped to omit the incriminatory line).

This is where I got miffed.

#1 – I can understand their panic in going “Uh oh, we didn’t anticipate so many entries in just the first hour, this contest is going to be over before we can publicise it!”, but backtracking barely an hour into the contest and justifying it by going “We want everyone to have a chance” is not being fair to the people who had already entered.

#2 – All the links to their page were open for everyone to see, ie. anyone who was on the Luxola Facebook page could see the links other people had posted and simply had to copy the link instead of searching through the website themselves. The settings were later changed by Luxola, but again, this showed a lack of thought process.

#3 – They deleted comments from members commenting on the change of terms. These comments were all attached to the image they deleted in order to re-upload the cropped image, so after responding to a couple of the comments, they just deleted the image, uploaded a new one and ignored the rest of the feedback from members. For brand management, this is a BIG no-no. You should always respond to customer feedback, even if just to offer an explanation, clarification or acknowledge the situation.

And just to be clear, I’ve got nothing against their services. I’ve ordered items from the website before and gotten exceptional service – the guy who hand-delivered my order accidentally missed out two items, but apologised profusely and was back within the hour with the remaining items.

The point I’m trying to make is that if companies like these want to run competitions, they should think things through. Furthermore, even if they did have an “oh shit” moment shortly into the contest, my current impression of them would have been a lot better if they had just honoured the first contest and perhaps run a second contest with different terms and conditions for the rest of their members instead of doing what they did, changing T&Cs halfway and leaving it at that without responding to all the comments.

Any thoughts?

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Monday, 9 April 2012

Happy Easter, and a little dotty fun…

I know it’s already Easter Monday, but never too late to wish you all a very Happy Easter right? *winks* If you’re wondering, the little chocolate chicks in the pic above were a gift to the office…cute right?

Since I had a slight break back in KL over the Easter weekend, I decided to try a 'Easter' look with my nails – I was originally going for a dotty “Easter eggs” effect, but apparently my colleague now tells me they remind her of strawberries…what do you think? :P

The polishes I used (L-R) – Skin Food Nail Vita in PK202 (I really wish they’d give their polishes names instead of just code numbers!), Revlon Nail Enamels in Tropical Temptation and Amber Ablaze.

After my usual base coat, I applied one coat of Skin Food PK202 – one coat gave me the opacity you see above, you can faintly make out the nail line on my fourth and fifth fingers, but I didn’t bother with a second coat since I was going to add dots to them.

Next, with a round tipped hairpin (I didn’t have any dotting tools with me, hence had to improvise!) I started dotting my nails with Revlon Amber Ablaze. Tried to make them as random as possible, but they kind of ended up in rows…I wonder why?

After Amber Ablaze, it was time to add Tropical Temptation dots – I quite love this combo of cheerful colours, and they’re all glossy finish save for the Amber Ablaze (which I had to add in simply for colour contrast and because I love my sparkle!)

I added a coat of Seche Vite after waiting for them to try about 5 minutes, but alas, you can see from the top pic that my index finger got a bit smudged in the process. The rest are still holding fine though. :D My nails are pretty simple since I'm a klutz when it comes to nail art, but if you want more advanced designs I'd suggest you check out Pretty Beautiful's Easter nail art tutorial. :D

Oohh, and if you have the chance to (I know some friends in Australia have gone bonkers over these), you have to try these Cadbury Easter eggs. They come in a cute egg carton of 4 pieces, and are super fun to eat! Only downside is they cost a bomb, but now that it’s Easter Monday I’m hoping they’ll be on sale…let me know if anyone else has managed to find them in Malaysia?

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Monday, 2 April 2012

April’s Bellabox has exciting things in store! :D

Remember I mentioned attending a Bellabox event a couple of weeks back? It’s no surprise I’ve been a fan of their boxes, considering they have not failed to impress me so far (it’s been 6 months and counting!)

Personally, the highlights so far have been Akin, Caudalie, OCC, Aveda, Savoir Faire, Dermalogica and Pangea Organics – I’ve been very happy with the boxes so far, and certainly happy to continue.

Just a little taste into what’s in store for the April Bellabox (which will be out very soon!) – the theme for this month is Flawless Beauty, which means the contents will be aimed at helping you achieve flawless skin *wink*

Bellabox has also signed up with several new brand partners that include Benefit Cosmetics, Laura Mercier, Ahava, Elizabeth Arden, High Tech Cosmetics and Annick Goutal amongst many others.

So, who has signed up for Bellabox, and what have you particularly liked from your boxes so far? Or is there a particular brand from the list of new partners above that you’re really looking forward to? (I’ve got my eye on Annick Goutal!)

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