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Makeup. Fragrance. Nails. Skincare Today is Wednesday, April 16, 2014
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(Shot courtesy of Sophia [The Makeup Blogette])

YEP, you read right - I was bestowed with the wonderful opportunity to attend Taiwanese Skincare Guru NIU ER's Beauty Talkshow this afternoon, presented by Kose.  Yes, 98% of the seminar was in Mandarin, but I thoroughly enjoyed myself thanks to the supremely entertaining Niu Er and my 2 chums, Amy and Sophia who helped translate key points for me in English.  I probably understood a grand total of 5% of the Mandarin on my own ... maybe less :P


I've heard so much about Niu Er and how he has amassed a legion of fans, primarily a Taiwanese infotainment show, NU REN WO ZUI DA (Lady First Beauty).  Niu Er had presented a similar talkshow last year on a slightly different skincare topic - this year's talkshow was all about including whitening skincare products into our skincare regiment and application tips and tricks.

I tried to take this shot while Niu Er was doing this little impromptu "dance" on stage - this somewhat explains why I enjoyed myself so much.  Niu Er is supremely entertaining - just from his body language and the way he manages the crowd, teasing and ribbing the chosen few.  He is definitely a charismatic figure who really can hold his own.

Ok, I'm done being enchanted by this amazingly youthful looking Guru. I took some notes down during the talkshow, reproduced as best as I can in the rest of this entry:


If I could sum up the entire presentation into an equation, it might look something like this:

A luminous, bright and youthful complexion =

a high intake of Vitamin C, Collagen


use of effective brightening skincare products


correct and dilligent methods of skincare application



Topical application helps, but cellular repair and rejuvenation is closely tied to the food we eat.  To this end, a high intake of Vitamin C is necessary.  Niu Er stressed that:

  • fruits such as cherries, strawberries, kiwis, lemons contain high levels of natural Vitamin C

  • It is more effective to consume fruits high in Vitamin C rather than to pop Vitamin C pills - I personally believe vitamin pills essentially supplement our diets and are not meant to entirely replace our consumption of naturally-occuring vitamins and minerals.

  • The body absorbs about 10% of Vitamin C from pills but is able to absorb closer to 100% of Vitamin C from real fruit intake

  • 2 servings of such Vitamin C-rich fruits daily is one basic and easy way to ensure brighter and more elastic skin in the long run


So we know what brightens skin - but how do we keep it elastic and firm? Niu Er suggests a high intake of "good proteins" from fish, chicken and white fungus:

  • A lack of collagen causes skin to sag - this explains why we develop hollows under our eyes, sunken cheeks and wrinkles

  • Soups and broths made from double-boiling chicken, fish and/or white fungus are rich in proteins

  • As for chicken soups, Niu Er highlighted that gelatinous parts of the chicken are very high in collagen - if you're worried about other harms like cholestrol, you can freeze the chicken soup, which will separate the oil from the soup. Microwaving the soup is NOT recommended

  • Once the broth is ready, you really don't even need the chicken anymore as all the goodness of the chicken is in the broth

  • Likewise, white fungus is an excellent vegetarian source of collagen - one can either drink the soup or even apply it topically




SUNSCREEN and WHITENING SERUMS ARE HIGHLY IMPORTANT - Niu Er could not stress this enough.  However, just blindly purchasing any product that promises a brighter and more luminous complexion is not sufficient.  Certain whitening brightening ingredients are safer, more effective and target specific concerns:

  • Niu Er suggested looking out for key ingredients in the ingredients list such as KOJIC ACID, CHAMOMILE, VITAMIN C DERIVATIVES, ARBUTIN AND ELLAGIC ACID

  • KOJIC ACID and ARBUTIN are one of the most powerful brightening ingredients - these are found in products in the KOSE SEKKISEI, KOSE INFINITY and even the COSME DECORTE skincare ranges


KOJIC ACID: A by-product in the fermentation process of MALTING RICE, for use in the manufacturing Japanese rice wine. It has the ability to inhibit the formation of pigments in plant and animal tissues.  It also has anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties.

ARBUTIN: The extract of the BEARBERRY and is found in wheat as well as the skin of pears. It has the ability to inhibit tyrosinase and is thus able to prevent the development of melanin

Here Niu Er explained how melanin is formed and how ingredients like Arbutin and Kojic Acid are used to combat and suppress the process.

A simple example, using cut mushrooms pointed out how well ingredients such as Kojic Acid work:

A simple experiment where 2 slices of mushrooms, one with an application of Kojic Acid and the other without anything, were monitored for 3 hours - it is evident that Kojic Acid preserved and kept the mushroom slice fresher looking. Unlike the mushrooms, which were probably monitored in a closed environment, our skin unfortunately is exposed to environmental pollutants and daily stresses that rob it of its radiance - and Asian skin types take a double whammy - harsh weather as well as vulnerability to hyper-pigmentation.


A star product in KOSE's line up that contain Kojic Acid (which is not exactly easy to come by) is the INFINITY REALIZING WHITE XX.  This retails for about SGD$148 (if I remember correctly).  The INIFINITY range is essentially targeted at more mature skin that is experiencing sagging, dullness and so on.  Well, I'm not entirely far off from that club and if the INFINITY REALIZING WHITE XX boasts the much-sought after Kojic Acid, I'm on board!

You can read more about the INFINITY REALIZING WHITE XX HERE

The other option would be the Arbutin and Vitamin C-rich SHIROSUMI W - a whitening essence that both controls melanin production but prevents existing melanin in the melanocytes from becoming darker.  You can read more about SHIROSUMI HERE


Niu Er also highlighted that a common misconception is that whitening skincare can be used in phases or can be discontinued once pigmentation subsides - NO! Whitening, brightening skincare is essentially a life-long commitment - melanocytes are inherently present in the skin and other enviromental pollutants and stress factors can "wake up" these melanin-producing compounds.




Finally, Niu Er demonstrated on 3 participants a full facial regimen that we can easily incorporate into our existing skincare routines.  One of the highlights was how an 8-Step massage technique can help eliminate toxins and impurities from the face to create a brighter, smoother and even lifted visage.  I attempted to film the massage technique and will attempt to upload the video (if I manage to figure out how to!).

Here are some skincare application methods to keep in mind:

  • Niu Er recommends sweeping toners, lotions onto the skin with a cotton pad, using firm strokes; to ensure maximum absorption of the product, Niu Er then PATS the area of concern.  Patting the product into skin stimulates the cells and products (and nutrients) are thus better absorbed.

  • If there is a particular area of concern - say a cluster of spots - Niu Er recommends paying more attention to that area by applying more pressure and slightly more product.

  • When sweeping / applying products onto your skin, maintain 2 directions:

(1) from the centre of the face --> out

(2) from the base of the face (chin) --> upwards towards the ears, forehead

  • Essentially, these are basic application tips that can be used with any products - just ensure that your skin is sufficiently moisturised so that your hands can glide across your face.


Here is a shot from one of the demonstrations.  Niu Er cleaned off the participant's makeup and then used the SEKKISEI WHITE LIQUID WASH (which foamed up really nicely) to cleanse her skin.

Then, he applied SEIKISHO EXFOLIATING MASSAGE GEL, paying more concentration on her problem areas.

With firm, yet gentle massage strokes, Niu Er worked the massage gel into her skin - after the massage gel was cleaned off, the participant's skin admittedly looked more radiant.

And I have the EXFOLIATING MASSAGE GEL already (I think it retails for around SGD$35)

It essentially starts off as a blob of black, squishy gel - however, it is a self-warming gel that creates a delicious little warmth on the skin, clearing away impurities (there also seem to be minute minute micro-beads that exfoliate the skin) as you massage the gel on your skin.

Once the gel turns from the jet black to a grey, it is time to wash off the product, revealing radiant, smooth skin - I can personally attest to the smooth factor!



Skincare has always been an essential part of my lifestyle, having battled breakouts, spots and uneven skintone, which occasionally plague me still.  As you might have read in other entries, I have always been a fan of products with natural ingredients, having kick-started my skincare regime with Ayurvedic products.  As such, I am immensely pleased to learn more about the wonders of natural whitening / brightening superpowers (LOL!) such as Kojic Acid and Arbutin - and chicken soup will be on the menu tomorow!


I had an info-taining (informative + entertaining) afternoon out and my only regret? I don't understand Mandarin. Maybe by Niu Er's next beauty talkshow, I might have picked up the language? :D


Many thanks to Debbie from Kose for giving me this chance to learn so much from Niu Er Lao Shi; and many many thanks to Amy and Sophia for their time and effort in their translations :D



DISCLAIMER: I am not affiliated to KOSE.  SEIKISHO products featured were purchased with my own money.

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Hi hi,

Last week, I had a great evening out with Sara (Icyabstract), Chantana (Everbluec), Mag (Makeupstash) and Iris (Rougedeluxe) at Mandarin Gallery's 1st Anniversary Celebrations, where 2 lucky winners drove home in brand new BMWs!

This was one, a red convertible 120i and a white X5 (somehow that shot went missing .. hmmm)

To participate in this draw, shoppers had to spend a minimum of SGD$1000 at any of Mandarin Gallery's participating merchants from late Sep 2010 to Jan 2011.  At the Grand Draw that evening, 20 participants were picked by the auditors and their luck was revealed in 3 stages.  First, the 20 participants drew random numbers which were assigned to 20 Hong Baos (Red Packets) - out of the 20 Hong Baos, only 8 had the magic words, "BMW" - the remaining 12 participants received vouchers of over SGD$600 each.  In the 2nd stage, out of the 8 participants, 2 winners were chose via a random computer programme (like Random.Org?) and finally, the 3 stage determined which winner received which car.


One of the main highlights of the evening were the performances by URBAN DRUM CREW. OMG - they are the bestest I've heard really.  You can see the passion in their faces as they become one with the music they perform! They are part marching band, part rhythmic modern dance, part cheerleaders and unless you have a fatal aversion to percussion performances, there's no way you can keep your feet from tapping.  They've been invited to perform at several high-profile events such as the Youth Olympic Games and the F1 races. Here are some shots I managed to get!

And if you still think I'm just a raving lunatic, you can check them out in this You Tube video I found of them


Loads more videos of them in You Tube and you can also check out their Facebook page HERE


After the event, we spent a little time exploring the shops in Mandarin Gallery - there are loads of boutiques like Egg3, Agatha Paris, Folli Follie, hansel, Kooshi, BOSS Orange, Marc Jacobs, Aliya and so on.  I've been meaning to visit Bud Cosmetics in Novena Square (I used to pass by during lunch when I was working) but never got the chance to - we popped by the Bud Cosmetics outlet in Mandarin Gallery too and I was fascinated with the amount of products they carried - when I run low on my shower gels and soaps, I'm definitely paying them a visit :D


So after walking around a bit, I spotted a huge boutique I know I can spend hours in - a boutique that houses Monet, Liz Clairborne, Kenji, Denni jewellery and I'll admit, the first thing that lured me there was the huge huge display of pearl necklaces .. I think we all know I have a weakness for pearls :P

Fortunately, the lady who served me was super sweet - I must have tried on like 8 or 9 necklaces and requested to see at least 10 others and I ended up bringing home the VERY FIRST NECKLACE I SPOTTED! LOL! I had been eyeing this at Tangs for a while but kept putting off the purchase :)

It was really difficult to photograph - its a multi-dimensional shade where it looks silvery-pink in some angles but gives off an amazing silvery-peacock green in other angles.  It is also individually knotted as many of my other pearl necklaces are. The shade and lustre is reminiscent of the much more expensive (and higher quality) South Sea pearl varieties.



And we ended the evening at Jones the Grocer where I had a Wagyu beef burger - the accompanying rosemary-studded potato wedges and the aioli was amazing.  But NOT MORE AMAZING than this awesomely yummy Strawberry Shortcake - the perfect amount of cold cold, smooth Chantilly cream, light vanilla sponge and fresh strawberries ....



Many thanks to Sinkid for the wonderful evening out. And many thanks to my chums for the lovely company - we never can have enough of these meetups! :)



DISCLAIMER: I am not affiliated to Mandarin Gallery nor Sinkid.

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Sometime earlier this year, I had attended a CLARINS event at Tangs which saw the re-introduction of the TIGER ORCHID into the local cityscape by planting the TIGER ORCHID plant onto a tree in front of Tangs; for a limited period of time at that point, Tangs also featured several beautiful orchid displays in-store (Click HERE to read about that event).  In addition, orchid plants were given to CLARINS customers as Gift With Purchase during a consumer event held at that point.

I currently have 2 orchid plants from such CLARINS promotions from a couple of years back (I featured them in this entry HERE).


So I was very happy to find out that CLARINS would be having an orchid named after the brand - after all, CLARINS not only uses numerous plant ingredients in its products, but is also well-known for its committment to bio-diversity and has several ongoing projects.  Having been a fan of CLARINS products for a couple of years and awaiting my orchids' next bloom, I was thrilled (and honestly, a little honoured!) to have attended the "birth of the first CLARINS orchid" at the Singapore Botanic Gardens last week. 



The branching sprays can reach to more than 60cm and each spray can bear up to a total of more than 100 well-displayed flowers.  Also the velvety petals and sepals are CRIMSON with ox blood-red spots with a centre-lip that is lemon yellow.  Unfortunately, it pulls a little pinky-red in my shots :(


Apparently, CLARINS is the only premium skincare brand to be gifted its own orchid by the Singapore Botanic Gardens, which is mighty significant. It is also a labour of love - the plant was pollinated from 2 different blooms way back in 2004 and the first bloom only appeared in Jun 2010.   

 An (oil?) painting of the CLARINS Orchid that was unveiled at the event.


Chairman of the CLARINS Groupe, the amazingly down-to-earth Mr Christian Courtin-Clarins, christening the orchid with its official name, RENANTHERA CLARINS CHRISTIAN & OLIVIER.


Look at the smile on their faces! Mr Christian Courtin-Clarins mentioned that for CLARINS to be gifted with an orchid that was specially created for them was a deep pride and honour.  The honour was even more significant having come from the Singapore Botanic Gardens which works to promote greenery and plant species, a field of work that is very close to the CLARINS Groupe's heart.  Mr Courtin-Clarins beamed: "it is not simply a flower but it validates the efforts that Clarins has dedicated to sustainable development all these years"

Click HERE to find out more about CLARINS' philosopy on RESPONSIBLE DEVELOPMENT


A light-hearted moment - Mr Courtin-Clarins has always joked about the immensely warm weather in Singapore and apparently once mentioned "Give me a fan" - so a fabric fan, printed with the image of the CLARINS orchid was presented (and we each got one!) which came in VERY useful when we took a tour around the National Orchid Garden.



And here are some shots from the NATIONAL ORCHID GARDEN at the Singapore Botanic Garden!

Like I mentioned, the naming of an orchid after the CLARINS Groupe is a very significant event - its an honour bestowed on state dignataries and the like.  Above is just one of the many different orchids that were named after various visiting State Dignitaries :)


Maybe I'm at that stage of my life, but really, the first thought that popped in my head when i shaw this GOLDEN-SHOWER (I think) laden arcways? The wedding march and a afternoon wedding tea-party! LOL!


Just a couple of shots I managed to snap of the various orchid displays.  There was also a couple of orchids in the Orchid Garden that were strongly vanilla scented! The guides mentioned that Vanilla pods are actually from an Orchid species - I didn't know that! See you learn something everyday! :D


Such a cute signboard! It was so cute, I had little choice but obey the instructions and attempted a couple of photos.  NOTE TO SELF: Attempting to take self-portraits in the blazing hot sun is a total no-no - I was so squinty-eyed, it made me want to reach for pliers to keep me from involuntarily squeezing my eyes shut! LOL!


After the tour, we all adjourned to a cafe for some refreshments and a video presentation that further highlighted CLARINS' committment to bio-diversity, including the CLARINS MEN AWARDS and one of its current projects, SOLAR IMPULSE (creating an aircraft that can fly solely on solar energy).  Click HERE to find out more about the SOLAR IMPULSE project and CLARINS' involvement



And all the event attendees were gifted with a little something from CLARINS :)

I practically squealed when I opened the bag! I've been wanting to try the Treatment Oils for sometime (having tried them during treatments at CLARINS INSTITUT a couple of years back) - they smell super heavenly and I think along with the plant extracts, the fragrance definitely promotes a sense of well-being! I received the RELAX Body Treatment Oil. I've yet to try the ENERGIZING EMULSION which is for tired legs and heavy-feeling legs - I will do so after a long day of shopping in heels and see how that works!

In the background of the shot above, on the extreme right, we have the PURE MELT CLEANSING GEL - its a makeup remover that turns into a liquidy texture that removes your makeup, just like a cleansing oil would. I've gone through a whole full-sized tube before and I really liked it but somehow forgot about it while experimenting with other cleansing oils.  I will try it again and hopefully, let you know my thoughts of it soon :)

A "baby" bottle of treatment oil - the smaller bottle of oil is the BLUE ORCHID FACE TREATMENT OIL for Dehydrated Skin. 



After the CLARINS event, I hopped over to RAFFLES CITY ROBINSONS where I met Jerlaine for lunch :) I also popped by the CLARINS counter there (which is my nominated outlet) to redeem the MOISTURE REPLENISHING LIP BALM with my points accumulated from all my CLARINS PURCHASES.  It usually retails for SGD$30 odd.  Somehow, either my lips have gotten drier or something's not working with my current lipbalm (the Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Lip Protectant stick which I still use) so I decided to give this a go.

Since I redeemed this with my CLARINS Club Beaute points, its a "HAUL" and not a regular haul :P Technically, its not a freebie since you still have to make purchases to accumulate points :)

Its formulated with ROSE WAX and has the faintest cherryish scent.  Its tinted a pale pink but the colour does not show up on the lips when applied.  The best part? It just feels emollient - neither oily nor sticky. I've been using this for a couple of days (at night) already and I feel it does a good job of keeping the lips soft and supple - I don't wake up with patches of scaly, brick-like skin on my lips!



I hope you enjoyed the shots of the flowers! Thanks for stopping by and have a great week!



I know I will be in a good mood this week since I received news that I passed both my PhD Qualifying Exams! Now all I have to conquer in January 2011 is my Oral Defence and then I'm all set to write my thesis! Wheeee! 

I just want to say a Big Thank You to all the good hearts who wished me well and encouraged me - its makes a whole lot of difference in a stress-laden situation!


DISCLAIMER: I am not affiliated to CLARINS.  All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by anyone :)

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Hi hi hi!

So on Saturday, I was fortunate enough to attend a COSME DECORTE AQ (CD AQ) MAKEUP WORKSHOP conducted by the affable CLARENCE LEE, with Sophia (The Makeup Blogette), Iris (Rougedeluxe) and Mag (Makeupstash).  CD AQ is a premium skincare and makeup line just by looking at product catalogues, one can tell how elegant and luxurioous the product packaging is and how technologically advanced the product formulations are. 


My own experience with Japanese makeup is somewhat limited and restricted only to point makeup (how will I ever be able to experience the joy that is Japanese foundations? *sigh* LOL!) and my stash is limited to a couple of eyeshadows from Shu Uemura, cream eyeshadows from Beaute de Kose, Shiseido and Kate, opaque lipglosses from Beaute de Kose and mascaras from Majolica Majorca and Fairy Drops. So I was all pumped up for this!



The workshop was really useful - Clarence pointed out many tips and pointers that I thought can be rather easily incorporated into our daily skincare and makeup routines (all of Clarence's tips are highlighted in pink for easy reference). 


The first and most basic pointer that Clarence mentioned was rather than being concerned that makeup is what clogs our skin causing breakouts, its the removal of makeup and thorough cleansing that keeps skin healthy and beautiful.  I am personally religious about double cleansing my skin after wearing makeup but Clarence pointed something else out: EVEN IF YOU GO WITHOUT WEARING MAKEUP, IT IS STILL IMPORTANT TO THOROUGHLY DOUBLE CLEANSE YOUR SKIN GIVEN THAT OUR SKIN IS EXPOSED TO POLLUTANTS IN THE ENVIRONMENT. On the days when I'm just at home without MU, I usually only use a cleanser in the shower but I'm going to try double-cleansing now and see if breakouts and bumps diminish.




The BASE MAKEUP in the CD AQ line has been formulated with a LIGHT SCULPTURE POWDER which reflects light more strongly than standard powders, resulting in a 3D effect on the complexion.  However, this 3D effect is not harsh and acute but softly and delicately curved along the planes of the face, resulting in a complexion that is translucent, radiant and glowing.  A lot of the base makeup also contains the same key skincare ingredients which have moisturising benefits for supple and radiant skin - some of the ingredients include WHITE BIRCH WATER, RICE BRAN EXTRACT, VITAMIN B6, WHITE LILY EXTRACT and ROSE HIP OIL.  



The MAKEUP BASE comes in 2 shades - Lilac (01) and Green (02). The swatch on my inner wrist is that of 01 - I noticed that initially, when I'm blending it out, my skin looks a little ashy but once completely blended out, I couldn't detect any ashiness.  The Makeup Base felt very smooth and almost velvety on my skin and there was a very faint floral scent, which soon disappeared. 


Clarence applied the MAKEUP BASE on the model in very gentle dabbing motions - honestly, I was ashamed of myself since I am way more rough in applying my skincare and foundation even! As you can see, Clarence squeezed out a pearl-sized amount of the Makeup Base onto his palm and worked the Makeup Base section by section on the model's face.  I also think that letting the Makeup Base sit on the palm while you gently blend it on skin allows the product to get gently warmed up by the heat from our palm which aids in better blending?




There are 7 shades to choose from for the CREAM FOUNDATION SUPREME SPF20 PA++, in 3 general shade families CREAM, OCHRE and PINK.  Unfortunately, none of the foundation shades suited my skintone *cries* but that didn't stop me from swatching it - it felt luxuriously smooth and almost had this soft, "whipped" consistency.  The Cream Foundation contains the LIGHT SCULPTURE POWDER and claims to stay fresh-looking for long hours. 


When Clarence was applying the foundation on the model, he approached it pretty much the same way as he applied the MAKEUP BASE - section by section and blending it in gently.  Clarence also pointed out the importance of applying foundation in a downward motion, so as to prevent foundation from being trapped in our pores or emphasising the minute facial hairs on our faces





Next Clarence applied the MODELLING NUANCER - a creme for contouring (BROWN) and highlighting (WHITE).  I've always thought that the only way to locate the cheekbones on the planes of the face was to suck in my cheeks (and make a goldfish lip expression?). Clarence pointed out that one can align the thumbs along the side of the cheeks to locate the cheekbones (as he is showing in the shot above on the model) and apply the contour under the cheekbones and blended out towards the jawline to help create the illusion of a smaller face.  Unfortunately, on my skintone, the BROWN MODELLING NUANCER looked a little dull and ashy, given that its a rather cool-toned, ashy brown.  However, it applies and blends very easily and does not drag on the skin. 


Clarence recommended that using the WHITE highlighting MODELLING NUANCER on specific areas of the face, like the outer corners of the eyes, the corners of the mouth, the bridge of the nose, can immediately help brighten one's complexion and give it an uplifted appearance


He also quipped that attempting to brighten up the eye area with a gentle highlighter is a much better idea than trying to use a concealer that's a couple of shades lighter - that will just result in an ashy, reverse Panda-bear eye look!




(Thanks to Iris for helping take shots of the face powder!)


The FACE POWDER N, which comes in 1 shade, 001 - is SWOONDERFUL!!! It is very very finely milled and when applied on the skin, its soooo smooth and settles on the complexion so well, its AMAZING. 


I tried this on my face, just like Clarence recommended, with a soft powder puff and wowza! Ok, I'll confess that when I saw the powder, I was like "WHY IS IT PINKY-LILAC?!! WHY DIDN'T THEY MANUFACTURE A YELLOWY ONE SO I CAN USE IT TOO?!!". 

Then I watched in envy as everyone else started using it and I saw how beautifully smooth it set the foundation and so I decided to give it a shot.  So the lesson learnt I from this? Don't assume and try anything once cos you never really can tell for sure how its really going to look like on you!  *so I now eat humble pie for kicking-up a mental fuss* 

According to CD AQ, the FACE POWDER N will not result in a cakey look, despite heavy layering and it is supposed to help with creating an even, translucent and radiant complexion.  I really like this one :D .... did I mention it has a nice scent? Sort of a cross between baby powder and a light floral scent to me ... :D






CD AQ Point Makeup (Eyes, Lips and Cheeks) all contain GOLD COLLOID POWDER, which has not been used in makeup before.  Solid gold is dissolved into a liquid, AQUA REGIA, whihc is an ultra-fine particle at the nano-level below 5000th of a millimetre of gold (i.e super super fine and delicate).  This is then dispersed into water and sprayed onto a "pearly sheen agent" resulting in a golden, gilded appearance, nuanced with an aura of purple.  Instead of glitter (which can be chunky), products containing the GOLD COLLOID have a deep but delicate sparkle.




There are a total of 9 different eyeshadow quads to choose from the SHADOW SUPREME range - both in cool and warm shades.  As you can see from the more close-up shots of the eyeshadow quads, the eyeshadows are a little soft and delicate but are relatively well-pigmented.  In each palette, you will notice that there are a small variety of finishes - a high-shimmery, glimmering shade, a satin-finish shade and a rich pearlised shade.  I had a chance to apply these shadows on my eyes and I realised that they blend very easily given how smooth and soft they are.  I think they will look particularly pretty over a good base which will bring out the colours even more.


For the demonstration, Clarence did a green smokey look on the model using palette 27 and a deeper green shade (likely from palette 22).  He first applied the brighter green (from 27) on the eyelids with his finger and blended it out and then used a sponge-tip applicator to create the cat-eye shape (he quipped that he would be cheating if he used his brushes! LOL!).   


One tip he shared was to make sure that if you line you lower lash line area with shadow or liner, try to join it to the upper lash line (at the outer corners) which emphasises a wide-eyed look - I think this results in a wide-eyed look since you essentially create a 'frame' for the entire eye, allowing it to be prominent.  I personally find it difficult to use an eyeliner in that technique since there is a bit of a gap between my lower and upper lashlines at the outercorners of my eye but I've never really tried lining my lower lashline (underneath the lashes and not the waterline) with eyeshadow - I shall try and see how that works.  I also found it immensely difficult to apply eyeshadow with the sponge-tip applicator - I kept dropping it *klutz* unlike Clarence who wielded it with such grace *shamefaced*




Unfortunately, I didn't manage to take a close-up shot of the MASCARA EXCELLENT so a picture from the catalogue will have to do.  Ok, another rave here - the mascara is really EXCELLENT! I am a mascara person - I've tried many many mascaras and my all-time favourites would have to be HELENA RUBENSTEIN LASH QUEEN FELINE BLACKS, YSL SINGULIER, MAC STUDIO FIX LASH and ZOOM LASH mascara - these have great formulas and the bristles of the mascara wand are able to coat each lash with minimal clumping. 


What makes the CD AQ mascara so excellent? It is UBER GLOSSY BLACK and while I had removed my eyeshadow and eyeliner to try out the CD eyeshadows, I was unable to remove my mascara (I was wearing 2 coats of MAC STUDIO FIX LASH).  Despite that, I was able to apply CD AQ's mascara on my lashes, without it tugging and clumping everywhere.  The bristles of the mascara wand was separated enough that I could manipulate the wand through my already-mascaraed lashes.  Iris quipped that my lashes looked "humongous" - an humourous exaggeration surely, but I really liked the deep black and volumising effect of the CD AQ Mascara Excellent.  Excellently aptly named!!!


One tip Clarence shared when he was applying mascara on the model's lashes was that we need not be afraid of curling our lashes "fantastically" (i.e. very curled) - mascara will usually weigh the lashes down so a higher, stronger curl will help to maintain the curled shape. And oh, to always curl lashes BEFORE applying mascara!




Another luxuriously formulated product, the ROUGE SUPREME, is available in 15 shades.  The lipstick contains MOISTURE LIFT OIL which provides a glowy, long-lasting moisture, while the "MELTY FEEL FORMULA" ensures a plumped-up effect.  Apart from the GOLD COLLOID POWDER, the lipsticks in this range also contain a "CONCEALING POWDER" which conceals longitude wrinkles and shadows on the lips.




Lastly, Clarence finished off the model's makeup with FACE COLOUR N (blush), which is available in 4 shades of bright orange, brown, red and pink (as seen in the pic above). Clarence pointed out something that never occured to me before - he mentioned that we need not be restricted by only cool blushes or only warm blushes.  One can wear a mixture of peachy blush on the cheeks with a pop of pink blush blended on the tops of the apples of our cheeks


Alternatively, one can soften the girly-look created by a strong pink blush, simply by blending in a little tawny-brown blush in


Also another tip Clarence shared was that we need not restrict blush to the apples of the cheeks only - one can blend the blush upwards towards the temples or the hairline for a more contoured appearance (which I can now try with my new Sigma F25 and F35!!! Whee!)


Here is the eyelook I tried:

Eyeshadow: Palette 27 and 26 (used dry, without base; applied with fingertips and sponge-tip applicator)


Eyeliner (upper lashline): Liquid Eyeliner N (black) (which was a little difficult to apply given how I'm not used to the thin liquid liner brushes)

(And I cheated for the lower-lashline - I've got MAC Pearlglide Intense Eyeliner in BLACK LINE on :P)


Face: Face Powder N (I blotted and tissued my face a little and then applied the Face Powder N with a powder puff) 




And finally, here are some FACE CHARTS we were given, for inspiration and ideas :)


Thanks again to Debbie for giving me the opportunity to explore the luxurious beauty that is Cosme Decorte AQ .. and thanks to Iris, Mag and Sophia for the wonderful company!


Hope you found some of the tips useful! Thanks for stopping by and have a great week ahead :)



DISCLAIMER: I am neither affiliated to KOSE or COSME DECORTE AQ.  All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by anyone. 

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Mag, Iris, Sophia, Shirleen and I attended the LANCOME TEINT MIRACLE PRESS Event at the Blue Room, Arts House yesterday afternoon.  The highlights of the press event included a presentation on the technology behind the development of the foundation and a live makeup demonstration by Lancome National Makeup Artist Lina Tock. 


*** EDIT ***

As I mentioned later in the entry, ISETAN SCOTTS will launch TEINT MIRACLE on 17 SEP 2010 (Details of launch party towards end of entry). 

  • ROBINSONS will launch TEINT MIRACLE on 24 Sep 2010


  • ISLAND-WIDE (all Lancome counters) launch of TEINT MIRACLE on 1 Oct 2010




TECHNICAL DETAILS behind TEINT MIRACLE are available in this entry HERE

BEFORE-&-AFTER, LOTD and LONGEVITY, LIGHTING TESTS are available in these entries HERE and HERE


The setting of the event reflected what TEINT MIRACLE is about - freshness, radiance, brightness and natural beauty.  And being a Lancome event, ROSES are an absulute must!



Room full of the 'who's who' in the local beauty industry!



The IT trend in makeup right now - nude, glowy natural-looking complexions. 

But as Lancome's National Makeup Artist Lina Tock commented:



Live Makeup demonstration on statuesque models using the LANCOME TEINT MIRACLE FOUNDATION and MULTI-LIGHTS CORRECTOR PEN ... and the models positively GLOWED!



And as part of the event, I was given an opportunity to have a little photoshoot. The photographer was amazing! He knew I was all nerves and was really really nice.  He showed me the test photos as we went along so I could see what worked and what didn't.  Mag managed to snap one of the many shots the photographer took! 


And here, when the photographer was changing the camera lenses, Mag quickly stole a shot of me with the roses that were being carried into the venue; it was so funny cos the workmen were surprised to find us utterly fascinated with the roses!


The dress code was smart casual in white, silver and/or grey.  And this is also probably one of the rare times I sported a very neutral eye - totally out of character but I actually liked it! :D And most of all, I like how smooth and glowy the complexion looks with the TEINT MIRACLE foundation on!


If you'd like to check out LANCOME TEINT MIRACLE in person and hear more about how to re-create that bare-skin perfection that's all the rage this season, you can head down to ISETAN SCOTTS from 17-23 Sep 2010 for the Exclusive launch of TEINT MIRACLE.  There is also a launch party at Isetan Scotts on 17 Sep 2010 from 7-830 pm



And Sophia, Shirleen and I headed over to Raffles City for some dinner and shopping after the event, where naturally I hauled a couple of things.  And here's one - MAC Nail Lacquer in EARTHLY HARMONY! Just haaaadd to get it! All this nude, bare, glowy thing finally got to me and now I'm a nudey-taupey shade convert! Haha!



That's all for now; thanks for stopping by!



DISCLAIMER: I am not affiliated to Lancome; all opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by anyone.  MAC product purchased with my own money.

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Sorry, its been a while and I have quite a bit to share!


So story is this - I was out with Iris (of Rougedeluxe) on Friday evening and thanks to Mag (of Makeup Stash), I was invited along to the Launch Event of the FABULOUS FELINES (FF) Collection at MAC Ngee Ann City.  I think the only other MAC collection launch I've attended was the PRET-A-PAPIER event earlier this year?

It was really nice to be there - the music, the models, and MAKEUP!!! Mmmmm (literally, M M M! Haha!).  There was a mini-catwalk (CAT-walk!) by the 3 models who represented each of the colour collections in FF, Leopard Luxe, Palace Pedigreed and Burmese Beauty and we were all treated to a makeup demonstration by MAC's Senior Artist BENO LIM.  I've only heard of and read about Beno before and it was real nice to meet him - he was very friendly and even noticed that I asked the model what nail polish she was wearing and subseqently wanted to help me with my query :)


PS: I'm including links to Temptalia's entries on the review / swatches of the 3 colour collections for your easy reference :)



Here are some shots from the CAT-walk!

I was instantly reminded of Tyra Banks in ANTM - these girls are so "high fashion"! LOL! I like the 2nd shot!


Love the heeled booties! I'm ALWAYS envious of girls who can confidently walk around in stilettos!





The Leopard Luxe colour collection is all about a tan, tawny and golden colour palette. Beno showed the audience what at the products they can use to recreate the LEOPARD LUXE look - he used the Leopard Luxe Eyeshadow Quad and Pigment in OLD GOLD.  OLD GOLD is one of my favourite pigments - its a duochrome (or perhaps tri-tone?) golden-bronze base that flashes green and looks great paired with quite a number of other colours. 


You can check out Temptalia's review / swatches of the Leopard Luxe colour collection HERE




The Palace Pedigreed colour collection is much cooler-toned that Leopard Luxe - greys, deep blues, plums and burgundy.  For this look, Beno explained that Cunning lipstick paired with Burgundy lipliner creates the deep berry lip seen on the model - deep lips are always "in" for fall collections.  If I'm not wrong, the model's eyes have been lined with the SMOKY HEIR Superslick Eyeliner - a burgundy plum eyeliner with violet and plum micro-shimmer.


You can check out Temptalia's review / swatches of the Palace Pedigreed collection HERE and HERE




The Burmese Beauty colour collection is mostly teak-olive themed but I really like the addition of the duochrome teal-bronzey shade that's so reminiscent of CLUB eyeshadow (FYI, the specific eyeshadow is also called Burmese Beauty in the eyshadow quad). 

Beno also talked about one of MAC's new foundation offerings, the new Mineralised Cream Foundation (he's holding the compact in the shot above) - I swatched it at the store and I think it feels really smooth and goes on practically seamlessly (on my inner arm).  I am not too sure about how high the coverage is but its something I do want to check out sooner or later :)

In this additional shot of the Burmese Beauty model, you can see she's got her nails done in a putty, cement shade - its most likely EARTHLY HARMONY from the MAC Fall Winter Nail Trend Collection (check out my next post!).  It reminded me a lot of China Glaze INGRID (Vintage Vixen Collection) - however, Earthly Harmony has a much more lighter-toned base and rather than gold shimmer, it is chockfull of gold flecks that seem to give it a golden cast.



You can check out Temptalia's review / swatches of the Burmese Beauty collection HERE and HERE



The FALL WINTER NAIL TREND Collection was also launched around the same time as Fabulous Felines collection, and since the polishes were featured in the FF collection, MAC also treated us to complimentary express manicures - we were allowed to choose whichever shades that caught our eye.  I decided to be naughty and tried more than one shade in the end!


Middle to Pinky Fingers: CONCUBINE




And some shots of us at the event :

Mag & I


  Sarah & I



When news broke out of this collection earlier in the year, I was the most intrigued by the SUPERSLICK EYELINERS.  I always use eyeliner and I favour liquid eyeliners for my upper lashline and use the pencil eyeliners on my lower lashline. And better yet, I love liquid eyeliners with a felt-pen tip applicator! 


Incidentally, the SUPERSLICK EYELINERS were also singled out as one of the must-have items from the FF collection, as seen in the snippet below in the latest issue of the ISETAN Cardmembers' Newsletter:


However, having been on a horrific hauling streak these few months (and I seem not to see any slow-down :P), I decided not to whip myself up into a frenzy when this collection launched.  Thankfully, some of the pigments were re-promotes (I am a pigment piggy also) and I already own OLD GOLD and MAUVEMENT pigment (am thinking about Bloodline Pigment now but shall think harder still).  However, when Sophia and I went down for the TANGS 12% Cardmembers sale on Wed, the liners called out to me and I simply could not resist - I got myself 2, in PURE SHOW (GOLD) and SIGNATURE BLUE (BLUE)

I wanted to get more (I ALWAYS WANT to get MORE .. sigh), like the SILVER, GREEN and PURPLE but I held back.  Like a good girl. 

Lo and behold, I received a Goodie Bag from the collection launch (Woooohooooooo!!!) and it contained 3 SUPERSLICK EYELINERS!!! (Wooooohoooooo! Woooohoooooo!! Woooohoooooo!!!) in ON THE HUNT (BLACK), SMOKY HEIR (BURGUNDY PLUM) and NOCTURNAL (SILVER).  Thank you MAC!!!


Let's check out the eyeliner swatches (all light to medium swatches on NC43 skintone)





I noticed that the GOLD and SILVER shades in particular, had this foil-effect when swatched, more so that the BLUE and PLUM shades.  The BLACK has this shiny, patent look to it. 

Also, as you can see, SMOKY HEIR is not a straight up plum-burgundy shade - the swatch above shows that it has blue-violet and reddish-plum micro-shimmer.  Lovely!!!





And what is an eyeliner feature without some "commando-styled assault" on this blog, ya? LOL!

So I subjected a set of swatches to the running water and hand wash soap test.  I think they came out pretty successfull - elsewhere, there have been raves about the longevity of these eyeliners which are rather budgeproof once set and I just had to find out for myself!

No smearing, smudging, buding, running, whatsoever. At all. Temptalia also subjected the Superslick Eyeliners to the shower test and they didn't run or smear on her after she splashed her face with water.  You can read more on her shower test HERE


And this is after 2 rounds of vigourous rubbing with handwash soap.  Remember I mentioned that the black had more of a shiny, patent look than the others? Might that texture have something to do with the fact that it succumbed to 2 rounds of vigourous rubbing?


And of course, the fact that it succumbed is NOT A MINUS for it at all (not at this point, at least) - I am not going to be rubbing my eyes really hard with soap so I don't think this is a minus against it.  If anything at all, I think these 2 tests show how long-lasting and budgeproof the SUPERSLICK EYELINERS are.  Also, the eyeliners don't dissolve and run - they come off in flakes when rubbed hard. 



All in all, I'm totally pleased with my stash of the new SUPERSLICK Liquid Eyeliners.  I'm glad I got the opportunity to watch Beno in action and the models strut their stuff at the collection launch which I felt was one of the highlights of my week (that, and the touristy trip that Sophia and I took to Marina Bay Sands on that hot hot hot afternoon! LOL!).


I'm still thinking about BLOODLINE Pigment but can't decide just yet (and you'll soon know why *wink wink*).  But tell me, did YOU get anything from MAC's FABULOUS FELINES collection? Are you intending to haul from this collection and if so, what? 

That's all for now; thanks for stopping by!



DISCLAIMER: I am not affiliated to MAC.  I only purchased PURE SHOW and SIGNATURE BLUE Superslick Eyeliners with my own money.  The remaining 3 Superslick Eyeliners were presented to me in MAC's Collection Launch Goodie Bag.

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This post is a little overdue - but its overdue for a reason! I attended a Benefit Brow event on 28 Jun 2010 at Sephora Ion (Thanks to Mag who grabbed a place for me!) and after the demo, we all experienced some brow waxing! I experience rather fast hair growth - about 1.5 - 2 weeks after threading (my usual mode of facial depilation), new hair growth can be rather visibly seen so I wanted to see how long the waxing would hold up on me! :)  On to the pics!



The finger-food spread at the Benefit counter (inside Sephora, near the cashiers).  Ok, I'll confess - I spilt the fruit punch as I took it :/





Hong Kong-based Wing Wu, Benefit's Regional Trainer.  Wing (who had a real nice pedicure by the way!) explained the differences between brow tweezing and waxing.  The primary difference is that with tweezing, there is a chance for the skin's surface to be damaged by sharp tweezers and you also run the risk of breaking the hair, rather than pulling it out altogether, which may result in faster hair growth.  Waxing however is a faster process (a whole row of hair is ripped out in one fluid motion - if done professionally that is!) and supposedly allows the maintenance of brow shape for a longer time. 

What was amusing was Wing pointed out some interesting facial feng shui pointers - if I remember correctly, women with thicker brows are destined to marry rich husbands? (Ok, so for once in my life, I'm thrilled about being hirsute! HAHAHHA!)



Maki Ho, Benefit's Brow Queen of Asia, conducted a demonstration on one of the participants. This part of the demonstration was interactive - as they demonstrated on the volunteer, how the brow's beginning, arch and end should be positioned, Wing and Maki made the rest of us measure our own brows the same way.  I was rather pleased that my existing brow shape was "approved" by the 2 Brow Authorities!





Benefit's Instant Brow Pencils - these are available in 3 shades (pencil names corresponds to swatch placement).  Each pencil comes with a spoolie-tip for you to brush and blend the product onto the brows.  These are supposed to be soft and creamy but one of the testers [the lightest shade] was a little on the dry side (perhaps as a result of constant testing by a gazillion people?).  These retail for SGD$41 each, for 1.2gm of product



Benefit Brow Zings.  These are little mirrored-kits containing a mini blending brush, a mini hard angle brush, a mini tweezer; it also holds 1 pan of wax for shaping the brow and 1 pan of brow powder to set the wax.  There are 3 shades available (light, medium and dark) - I didn't check but I suspect these are the Light and Medium kits.  I tried this on myself - holy cow! the wax is super pigmented and I was a little heavy-handed, so I think a little goes quite a long way.  These retail for SGD$62 each, for 4.35gm of product.


In addition to these, Benefit also has a clear brow mascara, Speed Brow, which retails at SGD$35 each, for 3gm of product. 




BROWS-A-GO-GO Brow kit, Lust Duster (loose pigment) in CLOUD 9 (a lilac-pink).  And a button badge!


Instructions on how to use the kit



What the kit contains - I like the fact that the kit has 2 shades of brow powder which makes it applicable for a wider variety of skintones.  I also like how they added in the brow highlight powder which I guess can be used to create the illusion of higher arches for those in-between-threading/waxing sessions.  And I must say, the 2 mini brushes are far from flimsy (unlike in some compacts, where the eyeshadow applicators or brushes are the "straight-to-bin" types!).  Brows-A-Go-Go kit retails at SGD$74, tipping it over into the medium-to-high-end price point but if you are someone who requires and/or will use all the products in the kit, then it really might be a worthwhile investment, especially since given the size of our brows and how pigmented the brow wax/powders are, the kit might last a good while. 




So I wanted to show how my brows have held up after being waxed.  I counted and as of today, its been about 19 days since I had the brow wax.  I only had the tops of my brows and the centre of my forehead (the empty space between the 2 brows) waxed.


This shot was taken at the brow event itself, immediately after the brow wax.  I think the tops of the brows have a really clean defined line.  In this shot, the brows were touched up and filled in (the inner corners especially) with a bit of the brow wax and powder (so it looks a little broader and darker). Special thanks to the Brow Technician Janna who was very professional (no "uh-ohs" or "oh nos"! LOL!) and made sure that my experience was fast, clean and relatively painless.



And 19 days later (no threading or waxing done) ..... 

This shot was taken yesterday.  In this shot, I only have my MAC Browset in MINK on my brows - and my brows have not been drawn, filled in or shaped with any brow pencil, wax or powder.  I can see hair beginning to grow at the tops of the inner corner of the brows and a few small hairs along the entire length of the tops of the brows (I've only been tweezing out the stray hairs on my browbone i.e the lower part of the brows where my eyeshadow highlight is. 


And what's the verdict?

Personally, I think with waxing, the hair growth for the top parts of my brows is not as fast as when I go for threading? Or it could be that with waxing, all the teeny tiny hairs are also ripped out so you end up with a cleaner look overall for a longer time?


The thing is this - a brow wax at Benefit counters will cost you SGD$22.  Brow threading is definitely much cheaper - in fact, at some of the Indian brow threading parlours, you can get threading done for as little as SGD$7 and even eyebrow services (tweezing) at MAC costs you about SGD$15.  That said, brow waxing may afford you a defined and relatively long-lasting clean look as opposed to threading. 


My personal take? I might be tempted into going for 1 session of brow waxing followed by 5-6 subsequent sessions of brow threading (just to clean up the strays)? That way, one just might be able to enjoy the best of both threading and waxing!





So when I was editing shots for this post and looking at the Benefit goodies I received that day, I decided to just assess how much Benefit products I had in total.  Some of you might know that I've been through 2 bottles of BENETINT and I stopped using it after I finished the 2nd bottle because I realised I wasn't too adept at blending it in properly - the girls at Benefit showed me how to better my application while at this event that day! Apart from Benetint which was my first Benefit purchase, I also used to use the Benefit Stick Foundation in Teeter Totter.  Here are all the Benefit products I currently have in my stash (accumulated from both purchases here and from Benefit.com sales):


Benefit Box O' Powders in DALLAS and CORALISTADALLAS was a little of a "regret purchase" in the sense that while texture and pigmentation is great, I feel its not the bestest colour on me - its a little too much on the plum side but I'm going to try it again, perhaps with a different creme base or highlighter? I love CORALISTA! Its a lovely glowly pinked-coral shade and it smells so good!


Benefit Lust Dusters in NUGGET, GOLDILOCKS and PUNK ROYALTY. For me both Nugget and Goldilocks are rather nice to use as highlight while Punk Royalty is a lovely deep purple.  These are finely-milled pigments with a little bit of micro-glitter that just give them an extra edge.



HOLLYWOODGLO - a liquid golden pink highlighter.  This one is different from both of Benefit's current offerings, Moon Beam and High Beam, which both apply decidedly iridescent pinkish on my skintone.  HollywoodGlo has a more golden tone on me.


Benefit lipgloss in CALIFORNIA KISSIN and Lipsticks.  CALIFORNIA KISSIN is a clear blue lipgelee with a tonne of sparkly blue micro-glitter.  The lipgelee is minty, which makes this lipgelee look and feel cool! :P



Silky-Finish lipstick in DESSERT FIRST - a medium pink glossy lipstick.  LA LA LAND is a nude rose shade while SASSYFRASS is a boysenberry pink with a little sparkle.  Both LA LA LAND and SASSYFRASS were on huge discounts on Benefit.com; both are in the Full-Finish range (more opaque than Silky-Finish)




Ok, that was a long post! So, share with me, have you tried / are you interested in trying brow waxing? And, are there any Benefit products you have and love? I'd love to hear!


See ya!




DISCLAIMER: I am neither affiliated to, nor is this a paid/sponsored advertisement by, BENEFIT.  All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by anyone. 

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Hi, hi hi!


So you might know that L'Oreal Paris Singapore had organised a blogger event last Saturday to touch-base with local makeup bloggers and to introduce us to their newly launched and limited edition eyeshadow palettes, OPEN EYES CHROME INTENSITY inspired by the myriad bright, iridescent colours of butterflies. 



It was great to finally meet the kinds folks at L'Oreal who had been in touch with me for a bit now - they have been very generous and friendly and I've had the opportunity to try a couple of their mascaras, lipsticks and eyeshadows. In addition, the 2 palettes just before the launch of this Open Eyes Chrome Intensity Series, the OPEN EYES series, were also great in terms of texture, pigmentation and pay-off and were a real pleasure to use.  So I was totally pleased at having the opportunity to swatch and try these new palettes ... did someone say CHROME and INTENSITY in the same sentence?! Wheeeee!


Before I go into the product swatches and comments, let me just share a few zany snapshots we took at the event. We were hosted at Fika, a halal-Swedish bistro along Arab Street and we had the event room upstairs all to ourselves.  What I really liked about the event was how relaxed, free and easy it was - we were allowed to play with the products ourselves and chat at our tables after the Introduction by Product Manager Jerraine. 


Makeover Area.  Snapshot courtesy of Tiphanie. 



While the makeovers were going on, the folks from L'Oreal came by and chatted with us, asking us our opinions on products and so on and making sure we ate our tasty lunches - I had the Swedish Pasta Bake (yummy - it was my 3rd visit to Fika and I knew this was a great entree to have!). 



As you can see, when left to our own devices, apart from swatching and analysing the products at hand, this is also what we end up doing, in such a relaxed environment:

Have a conference on how to hold / sell / use (?) a large camera .... that's not even mine to start off with ...



Borrow butterfly decor from the window panes and stick them in our hair ... and I think Mag and I made these look good and I think we totally rocked the butterfly theme! LOL!

(a la Will Smith in Men In Black in the iconic scene where he puts on his sunglasses - "I make these look good") LOL!



Touch up my lipstick after my pasta bake and then we all proceed to analyse what I carry in my makeup pouch ...

(The 3 cheeky, candid snapshots are courtesy of Iris of Rougedeluxe who was bent on capturing zany shots of me that day! LOL! Thanks, girl!)



Such events, where the participants are allowed to freely interact with one another is wonderful - not only do you get to share thoughts about beauty products with like-minded individuals, but you also get to hang out with and get to know the lovely folks with whom we often only get to "speak" online - I think the snapshots above are testimony to that!  So thanks to the team at L'Oreal Paris who gave us all the opportunity to have a great girls' day out! 


And let's get into the eyeshadows and the swatches!

I do like the packaging - nice and sturdy (somewhat heavy, so you know its not flimsy) and the clear window allows you to see the colours really clearly.



And swatches on my skintone (NC 43-45):

AQUADISIAC.  I really, really like this palette - the teal shade, Aquadisiac, is pigmented and is intense enough to keep it from being a pale, washed out teal-blue.  The medium blue, Blue Jean, is far from a flat navy blue and is almost like a duo-toned blue shade - I have dark blue shades in my stash but I really like how Blue Jean is both dark and vibrant at the same time.  And the teal/silver sparkles in the deep blue shade, Open Deep Blue just add that ooomph that I crave for. I already want to add more glitter to Open Deep Blue to make it really sparkle!




PINK MANIA.  Ok, if you know me, you'll guess in a instant that I'll be all over the iridescent purple shade, which is incidentally called Purple Obsession (2nd from left).  The pink shade, Pink Mania, is a really sweet, cotton-candy pink and I'm glad to see it as I really don't have anything like it.  Check out the way the deep purple shade, Open Deep Purple, glimmers with the purple/silver micro-glitter!




TIMELESS GREEN.  This is also another great colour combination - woodsy, foresty ... reminds me of something I once said to someone, who commented that green did not go with brown; I asked the chap "Have you ever seen a mismatched tree?" Hee hee!  The green shade, Timeless Green, has a great gold undertone in it.  I'm not tooo crazy about brown shades in general, but Cacao Mania has that touch of bronze in it that I hope will work for me.




MAGIC AMBER.  Ok, this gold-themed palette is unfortunately only available in department stores (I imagine Robinsons, John Littles?).  Magic Amber is a really deep ... well, amber shade but thankfully, there is enough gold in it that keeps it from pulling orange.  I know that the pale gold shade, Addictive Yellow, is likely meant as a lid shade but I think I'd like it as a highlight shade for me! Again, this palette houses a brown shade, Open Deep Brown, but this is a rich, chocolaty brown, unlike the bronze-toned brown of the Timeless Green palette.  Being the glitter glutton, I think it would have been really really pretty had Open Deep Brown been infused with some gold micro-shimmer.




My Initial Thoughts on the palettes?

So, honestly, after swatching these, I really do like how they look and feel - there's this silky, smooth texture and the pearlised glimmer of the eyeshadows, similar to the OPEN STELLAR palette I reviewed earlier on; like the OPEN STELLAR palette, I hope these can also be used wet! Also, I noticed that the micro-glitter in the deep shades did not fall all over the place (the same I noted in the Open Stellar palette).  All these swatches were medium swatches - at no point did I need to swipe 3 or 4 times in order to get the colours as you see, thanks to the "Pure Refined Micro-Pigments" used in these palettes.  According to L'Oreal, this technology ensures high colour pay-off, easy application and eyeshadow that promises to be long-wearing.  Of course, I would definitely recommend using a good eyeshadow base with these to ensure intense colour - for me, eyeshadow bases are a total must-have, regardless of what eyeshadow I apply, given my oily skin and our humid weather. 


The only thing I wished they had done with these palettes is this: the highlight shades in Aquadisiac, Pink Mania and Timeless Green are all the same, silvery white highlight shade.  I totally wished there were different highlight shades in each of the palettes, like how Magic Amber has a gold-tinged highlight shade?  It would have been wonderfully superb (superlative overload but don't mind me!) if say, they had included an iridescent or duochrome silvery-teal highlight shade for Aquadisiac, a sweet pinky-purple duochrome highlight shade for Pink Mania and a glimmering green-gold highlight shade for Timeless Green ... I would have totally been smitten to bits by that! And I think having different highlight shades might also give incentives for folks to collect all 4 palettes given that you get 16 mesmerising, high-intensity, pearlised shades! Wow! Then again, L'Oreal might have had a reason for not doing so (but if anyone's listening, how about some lovely douchrome or varied highlight shades next time pls? Hee hee! A girl can wish right?)




Apart from these, we also received a goodie bag containing the Ultra Volume Collagene Mascara (you can read the UVC Mascara review here), the Super Liner 24 Hr Gel Liner (you can find the Super Liner review here) and 3 of their latest range of Color Riche lipsticks in Red Passion (featured in my LOTD here), Intense Fuschia and Burning Rose.  Here are the swatches of the lipsticks:


Top: Intense Fuschia - a straight-up fuschia-pink shade

Middle: Burning Rose - a pinked-coral shade packed with gold glimmer

Bottom: Red Passion - look at that RED! How can I not be smitten by that? This and Chanel Rouge Coco in Cambon totally changed my perspective on red lipsticks and encouraged me to pick up MAC Brave Red recently!



That's all for now; I'm hoping to use the eyeshadow palettes real soon! Hope you found the swatches useful!




DISCLAIMER: I am neither affiliated to, no is this a paid/sponsored advertisment by L'Oreal. All products mentioned were sent to me to try and I did not pay for them.  All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by anyone.

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Ok, sorry but this is a bit of a long post, where there's an LOTD, a mini product-review and snapshots of the M Party at the Fullerton Waterboat House - they're all interconnected so I wanted to put them all together :)


Here is the LOTD I wore to the M Party, where the new Magnum Gold (with sea-salt caramel) Ice-Cream was launched. I used one of my favourite and tried-and-tested eyelooks since I was really running late for the event but I really wanted to use Chanel Rouge Allure in SUPER, a limited edition Barbie-pink lipstick from the current Les Pop-Up de Chanel Summer 2010 Collection









EYELINER (Lower Lashline): MAC Pearlglide Intense Eyeliner in BLACK RUSSIAN, set with MAC Mineralised Eyeshadow in CINDERFELLA


CHEEKS: I NUOVI ILLUMINA Skin Illuminating Pre-Makeup Base in DIVINE; MAC Sheertone Shimmer Blush in DOLLYMIX


LIPS: MAC Lip Pencil in MAGENTA (lined only); CHANEL Rouge Allure Lipstick in SUPER (Love this!)




Just a little morsel on the I NUOVI Illumina in DIVINE.  I was given Divine to try out by the generous folks at I Nuovi.  I did try it initially as a pre-makeup base (as it says on the bottle) - i.e BEFORE I apply my foundation but once I got all my foundation and powder on, I couldn't quite see it.  Maybe it lent the whole face a soft glowy look that probably would be subtly noticeable in photos perhaps? I will try that method again but I decided to use it as a sort of base for my blush for this look - I squeezed a little on the back of my hand and used a baby kabuki brush to apply and buff it onto my cheeks quickly and then applied my Dollymix blush over it, for a golden-pink cheek.  I think you can see the golden sheen more clearly in the snapshots of me at the M Party (featured towards the end of the post).



As shown above, Illumina is packaged in a palm-sized (30ml), screw-top opaque bottle - the product is dispensed via a slim nozzle (I like slim nozzles which allows less product to come out = less wastage!).  It spreads really easily - that's the star point of this product - no patches, bald spots or a case of more shimmer on one area! It pretty much melds into your skin and I didn't find that it was sticky or patchy or worse, yet, 'floating' on my cheeks. And once you've sheered it out and set it with a powder (in my case, my powder blush) - its pretty much budge-proof.  Ask Iris of Rougedeluxe or Mag of Makeup Stash who were at the M Party with me - I was perspiring like a chicken in the rotisserie but I checked my blush and it pretty much remained intact until I got home and washed up.  According to I Nuovi, Illumina contains hyaluronic acid and botanical extracts to hydrate the skin and I neither got overly greasy (not anymore than usual) nor did my skin feel dry or patchy.


I really do like how Divine looks on my skintone - it sheers out to a soft (but not dull) bronzed-gold sheen and there are no holographic or shiny glitter chunks here.  Illumina is available in a total of 3 shades: Divine, Aura and Heaven but the multi-reflective pearls (micro-shimmer) will likely look different on various skintones so if you're interested in this glow-in-a-bottle, you might want to head down to an I Nuovi store to check it out for yourself.  Although its SGD$48 per bottle, I think it might be something that will last you for a long time, given that you don't really need to use thaaaaat much - and the folks at I Nuovi like to push all of us into a tizzy with their seasonal sales anyway *wink wink* so you might want to check this out the next time you head to I Nuovi or when there's a storewide sale.   Here are the swatches of all 3 shades on my skintone:






And here are some snaps of the M Party - I was so glad to have had good company at this event cos it was a "mingle-around" type of event.  Many thanks to the folks at SINKID for extending the invites to us for this event!



Sara and me at the photo-taking wall - the backdrop was reminiscent of a mug-shot background


Iris and me grinning at our ice-cream.  How nice if that "gold bar" was real, 24kt gold? I'll be RRRRRRICH! LOL!


Swwweeeetttt and smooth (really smooth) caramelly vanilla ice cream covered with golden-dipped chocolate ... sinfully sweet! I think my favourite Magnums are the original and the almond-covered ones.  But it was such a hot and humid night that the smooth ice-cream started melting pretty fast and we slurped away ... yeah, slurping away at a chi-chi event. Groan ...



The Event Invite



Party Favours. Magnum Pleasure Authority? Hmmm .. are they kidding or is there some fan club? Or am I being silly?


As you can see, the invite and the party favours, a gold, ice-cream shaped luggage tag and a notebook fashioned as a passport, was travel-themed.  Perhaps this was in line with the promotional ads where the 2 ice-cream "theives" swipe a whole load of Magnum Golds and "getaway"? Or the fact that sea-salt caramel (a French flavour?) and Madagascan vanilla are exotic flavours so you're "transported" to a different place? Or maybe I'm reading too much into it and its just a fun theme? LOL! At any rate, the flashy gold luggage tag will sit pretty on the handle of my hot pink squarish suitcase that's been adorned with my MAC FAFI Collection stickers.  I need to go on a holiday now - both the luggage tag and the suitcase are new and begging to be used. Hee hee hee ...



DISCLAIMER: All products featured, with the exception of I Nuovi products, were purchased with my own money.  I am neither affiliated to, nor is this a paid/sponsored advertisement by, I Nuovi.  All opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced by anyone. 




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So Sophia and I were fortunate enough to have been invited to the ORCHIDS - A CONSERVATION STORY, jointly organised by TANGS, CLARINS, and NPARKS.  It was a corporate event held at the Island Cafe in Tangs Orchard and I was just simply thrilled to be part of what I thought to be such a chi-chi event!


As part of Tangs' ongoing GREEN EFFORT (as seen in the reusable GREEN EFFORT Tote bags available for sale at their cashiers), Tangs joined forces with CLARINS and NPARKs in the latter's project of the conservation of rare native orchid species in Singapore - the highlight of the event today was the planting of a cultivated TIGER ORCHID onto a mature yellow flame tree in front on Tang Plaza as well as a joint donation of SGD$10,000 from Tangs and Clarins to the Orchid Conservation Fund (concerned with the propagation and reintroduction of rare and endangered orchid species in Singapore's cityscape).  Donations of any amount by members of the public are also welcome - donations are accepted at all Tangs cashier points. 


Planting of the Tiger Orchid on the Yellow Flame Tree outside Tangs


Tiger Orchids!


As part of this joint-initiative and in celebration of The Year of Biodiversity (I had no idea about this, really), the upcoming Singapore Garden Festival in Jul 2010 @ Suntec City and the launch of the Orchid Conservation Fund, Tangs has also installed huge orchid displays (of various species) in levels 2 and 3 in Tangs Orchard from now till 3 Jun 2010.  Here is a snap of one of the displays:



I think the planting of the Tiger Orchid on the tree outside Tangs ties in nicely with the current flora-fauna theme in Orchard Rd - the plant displays (introduced late last year), the LED panels decorated with images of plants plus the giant nutmeg scuplture outside ION Orchard all reiterate the Garden City image that Singapore has consistently reflected.  Apart from this, it's really no surprise that a company like Clarins is part of such an effort - from personal experience (I've been a Clarins user since late 2004 - when I started earning my own $$$, that is! heh!) the major ingredients in Clarins' products are both botanical and fair-trade (often).  One of my favourite products from Clarins is the Gentle Facial Peeling (essentially a non-abrasive scrub-mask that gets rid of the nasties!). Here are some images, courtesy of Clarins, that illustrate their fair-trade efforts:

That's Mr Christian Courtin-Clarins - the Chairman of Clarins Groupe.  He was there today and was really friendly - poor chap had no idea who we were but beamed at us and shook hands anyway!





And here are some pics of the event at Island Cafe: 

Delectable munchies - see the tray of bite-sized raspberry and blueberry-topped cheesecakes in the right of the pic? They were delish and seeing how I hadn't eaten anything save for a wedge of focaccia bread and coffee, these were my best friends 


And the generous goodie bag. Confession - I've actually been through 2 tubs of the HydraQuench Cooling Cream-Gel.  I used to use it under my makeup and I found the light gel-cream texture worked well with my oily skin :D The Tangs Green Effort tote bag is HUGE! Perfect for lugging library books around :)




And the part that I'm most excited to talk about - this is not the first time Clarins is featuring Orchids.  If I remember correctly, in 2008 (I hope I got it right!), Clarins had a "garden" feature outside the walkway of Tangs Orchard and ran a few promotions.  As Gift-With-Purchases, Clarins' customers received deluxe-sized products as well as little pots of orchid plants.  I received 2 pots during this promotion and still have the plants! The flowers all dried up and fell off after a few weeks and my mom has been dilligently watering and tending to the orchid plants (putting in chopsticks to help them even!) which sit pretty in our balcony.  They started to bloom again last year but the buds never bloomed (I was sooo sad!). Then, about 2 weeks ago, buds started appearing again and today, I took a snapshot of it.  I hope it blooms soon and I will update this post with the pics!




DISCLAIMER: I am neither affiliated to, nor is this a paid/sponsored feature by, CLARINS or TANGS.  All opinions expressed are my own and have been not been influenced by anyone. 





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