LEGGINGS and ME.

Leggings are just AMAZING. No, I’m not talking about the glorified pantyhose kind of leggings. I’m actually talking about the Lulu Lemon-inspired breed of leggings that go anywhere from the yoga studio to… Pretty much everywhere. I love my leggings jet-black, though sometimes I like them a bit more on the charcoal side. As for fit, I prefer them about a size or two bigger, as they’re simply comfier that way.

I don’t know what I was thinking, but when 2014 came by, I simply had one resolution, but it was more like a challenge, or a joke, I’m not really sure. It was to procure 14 pairs of black leggings. Black leggings have been a closet staple of mine since 2009, but I never really had more than 4 at a time, and most of them turned ratty really fast from repeated use.

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LEGGINGS GIRL. I kind of like the idea of having a “trademark” clothing article. Blair Waldorf has her headbands, Daria Morgendorffer has her black boots– Panna Ciorrina has her leggings. It’s not so much of a fashion statment, but more than that, I feel thay having a signature style gives people something good to hang on to when identity issues start creeping behind them.

Oh identity issues.. I know them too well.

Well, as much as I don’t want to be binded by fashion, I don’t want it to hinder me from doingnwhat I like either. One day, I’ll be gutsy enough to wear gigantic peplums with heel-less heels, but for now, I’m a leggings girl. Just the girl I want to be.:)

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FIRST IMPRESSIONS: TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL Marshmallow Puff.

I don’t even want to talk about how expensive beauty blenders are, so let’s all just get over the idea of spending four digits on it. Let’s get over it.. NOW.

I like the idea of using a beauty blenders, especially since I’m quite the BB cream user. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t call it an essential, because it’s easy to find a foundation brush that can do the job if you won’t want to use your fingers. Beauty blenders are softer than regular makeup sponges, and they don’t absorb make-up, all while effectively blending and delivering cream products for a near-seemless effect.

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I like how the TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL Marshmallow Puff is more waisted, rather than just being teardrop-shaped, as it’s ideal for handling. The pointy tip also allows for it to get to those hard-to-reach areas, such as those around the eyes and the nose.

The sponge is meant to be wet before use, and I’ve read on multiple platforms that it’s pretty much useless if manipulated otherwise. It’s my first time using a sponge of this sort, but I really think it would make my BB cream applications a whole lot easier.

I know that this isn’t the original trademark beautyblender, and it’s not that I’m convincing myself, or anybody else otherwise. I want to enjoy all the goodness that advancements, in the beauty community, and everwhere else, without havibg to sacrifice practicality. Sometimes it’s about working with what we’ve got and producing beautiful results. That, my friends, is practicality. Vain practicality.:)

PS. Now this is gonna seem a bit off, considering my normally wholesome nature, but I told Norman that this is a sex toy. He believed it for a full 29 minutes.

TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL.

It’s so ironic how I managed to inject something “school”-related to my day just when it’s actually a school holiday at my university. Haha. Nooo.. Today was nothing like that. Today was cool. Today was a Too Cool for School day.
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I’m really happy that there’s finally a beauty shop at SM City BF Parañaque. The mall’s really close to my house, but it’s only the second time I’ve gone. I’m not that sure if the shop had been open the first time I went, or if just hadn’t noticed. This time, I was attracted by the picture of a scary doll on the shop window.

I’ve seen quite a number of Korean beauty shops here in the Philippines, and in Korea as well; and let me tell you something– it definitely does not look like a typical Korean beauty shop! If Etude House is a princess champagne room, and Innisfree is a spa, Too Cool for School is your High School (or Grade School, in my case, because we didn’t take art anymore in High School) art room.
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..but of course, how many of us had gone to school with decapitated doll parts on walls?

I’m totally loving the general esthetics put in to how the shop is presented. I generally enjoy beauty shops with specific themes to them. It makes the whole experience incomparable and worth remembering. With that being said, I would always see Too Cool for School as something kick-ass, creative, and simply COOL.
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I like the way Too Cool for School allows customers to satisfy their cosmetic cravigs without having to buy into the ultra-feminine image of typical Korean brands. Pretty people can be eccentric, and eccentric people can be pretty too.:)

Of course, Too Cool for School isn’t lacking on the typical elements of a typical Korean beauty shop. There are a lot of lines to choose from with so many inventive products. I was amazed at how many lip balm varieties were out there, but I kind of wish they had more lipstick and lip gloss shades to offer.

There’s simply a lot of stuff around, and it’s definitely worth spending lots of time swatching.. and swatching.. and swatching.
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The displays are just wonderful! It really feels like you’re inside an art room+biology lab+classroom!
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Oh, by the way.. On the 20th, they’ll be having a promo on their Egg Mouse Soap & Pack. Get one Egg Mouse Pack, and get the soap for free. Promo is until February 2, or until supplies last.
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I bought their Marshmallow Puff and their Black Eye Lash Curler. I’ll be writing about my first impressions soon, so please watch out for that.:) in the mean time, you can follow them on Twitter and Instagram— @toocoolgirlph

Eye Shadow AGAIN?

I know, I know.. I have to stop it with the eye shadows already. In fairness, this is my last joint one. After this, I’m moving on to blushes. I PROMISE.

I was lucky enough to get my hands on a promo size of the CLINIQUE Colour Surge Eye Shadow Quad. It came into my life just when I realized that I don’t have matte shadows yet, and was contemplating getting the similar-looking The Body Shop Holiday 2013 Eye Shadow Palette. Since Clinique is known for producing excellent skin care products, I definitely had no qualms about this palette.
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The palette comes with an applicator too. Foam on one end, and a fluffy brush on the other. I might not use it, because I have greater control with full-length brushes, but it’s nice to have a mini for those on-the-go touch-ups.
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The tiny palette houses two single shades each from the Blushing Nude Trio and the Pink Chocolate Quad, as well as Stone Violet and Chocolate Chip from Stay Matte.

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The shadows are so smooth and buttery, as expected from Clinique make-up. It’s of awesome pigmentation, though I did notice a slight (lower) difference with Stone Violet. I can’t really decide which one is my favorite shade, because all of them are just so pretty!
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Oh my, where’d my fingers go?
This is how the colors look on my melanin-lovin’ skin. I like the way Chocolate Chip and Stone Violet look right there! They go so well with sun-kissed skin, I feel. I’ve yet to come up with eye looks for them, but being that the colors compliment each other, I don’t think that would be difficult at all.

This isn’t much of the glittery shimmers, but I’m really glad I found this palette. Of course, we’re told to rise and shine, but sometimes it’s cool to be matte too so we can realize how beautiful it is to just watch everything else do the shining for us.:)

THE FACE SHOP Herb Day 365 Facial Cleanser.

I’m totally in love with Korean facial cleansers, especially those by Etude House. My last Korean cleanser was Etude House B.B Deep Cleansing Foam. I swore I’d try the Etude House Happy Tea Time Cleansing Foam, but destiny steered me to another Korean cosmetic empire for my facial cleanser fix, which brought me over to THE FACE SHOP Herb Day 365 Cleansing Foam in aloe.

I don’t have a keen analysis on the product or anything like that. I’d just like to say that the product feels good on my skin! It’s a joy to lather on, and it just smells terrific. It doesn’t dry my normal/combination skin at all, and thank goodness, no allergies! If you’re like me whose cleanser needs are very much basic, then I’d say that this is for you too.

Though I’ve yet to find my perfect Holy Grail of facial cleansers, this is awesome enough for me, after all, I’m a fairly simple gal, am I not?:)
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언니 (unni) PQ Style.

One of the many awesome things about being home in Parañaque is that a Korean supermarket (yes, I’m using supermarket and not just store) is never too far away for me to get my Korean quick fix. I kind of feel like I’m in the metro’s Little Korea sometimes. I have a wide selection of Korean stuff, and if they don’t have what I’m looking for, there’s sure to be another supermarket a few blocks away. I live in an are with a high concentration of Korean nationals, and my goodness, I’m loving it.:)

I love it so much, that I sometimes have little Korean-inspired dinners.
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..and yes, this was one of those instances.

Today I had Shin Ramyun Black, a Black Bean Calcium drink, and Norman’s favorite– kimchi. Honestly, I had the idea to get Korean food, because I was talking to Normy earlier today about food. He really likes kimchi, that I’m seriously starting to wonder if he’s an undercover Korean just pretending to be Singaporean, haha! By the way, Norman’s last name sounds slightly Korean too, though it’s actually Hainanese.

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I really like kimchi. My ex-roommate, Ira, can attest to that! I never thought it was possible, but there was a time when I was slightly fed up with kimchi, and it was when I was in Korea wherein loads and loads of kimchi would seemingly come out of nowhere. I like to think of that time as a rough patch in my love affair with kimchi, and right now, I’m proud to say that the relationship is stronger than ever.:)

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I think this is the first time I had Shin Ramyun Black. I almost never see it in local supermarkets, and not all Korean stores carry the variant. It’s slighty more expensive, but it was really good. The mushroom chunks and other trimings were a lot bigger, and there was more seasoning, as opposed to the regular Shin Ramyuns.

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I had some of this too. I like soy milk and all its simple glory, so I was way curious about what black bean soy milk had to offer. Didn’t disappoint at all! It’s like regular soy milk, but better. Sadly, it’s expensive. One milk box cost me Php30.

Of course, a Korean-inspired home dinner wouldn’t be complete without..
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Yeah, KBS. Haha.

I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned this to anyone, but I have this weird way of holding chopsticks. Like way weird. It’s really B-A-D since I’m part Chinese, and I regularly go to chopstick restaurants.
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The sticks aren’t really supposed to cross. Rather than going up and down, I tend to manipulate the upper stick side to side. It gets a lot worse when I think about it. I’m not really sure where I picked up that incorrectness, but I think it’s been something I’ve been doing since I was a little kid, but was just never corrected.

The part of greater strangeness?
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I actually do a better job at holding chopsticks with my left hand. To be fair, I’m ambidextrous, which means that I don’t have a non-dominant hand, just a less dominant hand. Then again, it gets ruined when I overthink.

I should have Korean-inspired dinners more often! It’s fun. Maybe I should go buy tteokbokki and fish cake next time. Oh wells. No pressure to it, after all, the Korean supermarket’s just a 10-minute walk away.:)

REVIEW and SWATCHES: ELF Baked Eyeshadow Palette.

It wasn’t too long since I first expressed interest in eye shadows. The popular choice then was the Urban Decay Naked palette, but having to shell out Php3,200.00 on one palette just didn’t sit well with me. I was just as horrified at the idea of purchasing fake make-up, be it Class A, AA, AAA or whatever, mainly because of the dangerous levels of Arscenic.

I was considering Smashbox Heat Wave, was wanting Clarins The Essentials, and was way too close to buying Laura Mercier Holiday 2013. Then I just realized how much of an eye shadow beginner I am, and that using pricey make-up improperly was just plain impractical. Thankfully, there’s ELF.
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I had just received my ELF Eyeshadow Palette today. I was quite lucky that it came in the mail today, just as I’m on Wellness Leave.

The reason why I chose ELF is that it’s an established brand, but at the same time, it isn’t so expensive that I’d feel bad if I were to make mistakes in application. It isn’t so cheap either that I’d be thinking about child laborers and arscenic with every stroke of a makeup brush. I also like that this is baked, which gives excellent color payoff.
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So we get ten colors in a palette. This one’s in California. You see a lot of neutrals, and few dark colors, perfect for day and night. There’s another palette, New York, which is moatly dominated by darker colors, more appropriate for evening looks. Frankly, I didn’t give it a second look.. and no, I’m not just being prejudiced because I lived in California at some point in my life. Haha.

SWATCHES: I did the swatching by taking the fleshy part of my fingers and drawing circles on the pans while counting to 5. For information.:)
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The shades on top, I would say, are pinky bronzy beigey. These are more appropriate for a very minimal look. You have your highlighting and base colors there. I can see myself using these quite often.

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The shades at the bottom are a bit more kick-ass, being the darker ones. I’d most probably use this for a night out or something. I imagine the shades second from the left hand side, slightly comparable to Laura Mercier’s African Violet.

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Oh, I have favorite shades, by the way. They don’t have names, so I’m not quite sure what I should call them, though if it were up to me, I’d call them Laura, Golden Girl, and Royce.

PACKAGING.
I don’t have many complaints about he packaging. It’s not as hin as those I’ve seen from Nars, but I can live with that. I’ve watched a few reviews expressing how the package is prety much a fingerprint-magnet–
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..but I can live with that.:)

I’ve also heard how the glitter falls everywhere when you use brushes so I tried it out. I’ve experienced that with both a fluffy brush and a stiff brush when used dry. It’s nothing major though as it’s minimal. It won’t make a mess on your table, because the palette itself is rimmed.
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The two palettes, California and New York lock in together, by the way, but being that I don’t exactly need the New York palette, I’m cool with having my one palette that doesn’t need to be locked into anything.

STARS.
Do I really need to give stars, hearts, or whatever grading system there is for reviewing stuff? I like the palette, that should be enough, right?:)

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Bloom Secret Weapon Concealer Kit.

Oh my goodness, I almost forgot to rewrite about this. I actually wrote this two days ago in the car. The driver was out, and I was bored inside, so I decided to write. I must’ve pressed something to delete it, because I couldn’t find the draft anymore. FAIL. Well anyway, I’m on self-granted Sanity Leave from school, so yeah, I’ve got the time.

I’ve been meaning to get the Bloom Secret Weapon Concealer Kit in Medium/Dark for a little but less than a month, and I finally did so last Saturday. I was hoping to get it Beauty Bar at Gateway Mall, but I decided to get it a Robinsons Magnolia instead. I think this was Php545.00.
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I’ll be honest, I can’t really give a good first impression about the concealer kit, since I’ve already stalked the product like crazy even before I bought it, and.. I’ve yet to use it because.. hmm.. because.. Well, I guess I’m simply not the type of girl who’d apply makeup for the sole sake of applying. That doesn’t mean that I won’t make a review though.:)

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I like the packaging. I’m used to seeing concealer in tiny round pots, in tubes that look like those of lipgloss and lipstick, but this is somewhat different. The palette is somewhat like an ice cube tray. The card thing slides on and serves at its cover. The package is quite thin that it would definietly find its place in a cosmetic pouch.

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The card thing that doubles as a lid has instructions at the back. The concealer kit houses 6 concealer shades. A guide telling us how to use the shades is quite helpful, especially if we’re dealing with green concealer. Frankly, I like it when makeup comes with instructions on how to use them. It makes things a whole lot more noob-friendly.:)

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I get skin discolorations and redness quite frequently, and now that I’m more educated about concealer shades and their uses, I feel more confident that I’d be able to fix myself up a little bit better. They say that imperfection is beauty, but of course, there’s nothing more beautiful than a confident woman who knows how to work it in order to bring out the best in her in spite of said imperfection.

Yeah.~

Goin’ NUTS.

If I were to eat according to my blood type (READ: if), I’d have stock up on legumes. Lots and lots of them! I’ll be honest, my current diet is composed mostly of rice and beef, and I lack the kitchen creativity to incorporate fun stuff like nuts and beans in my daily life; but in spite of that, I love nuts! Specifically, pistaschio nuts.

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Pistaschios are awesome! Like, the only thing I don’t like about them is that deshelling them is just a teensy bit difficult, and it pains my nailbeds if I deshell to many of them in one sitting. Sometimes, the pain’s worth it though, even if  I break a few of my baby-short nails once in a while.

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could have shelled pistaschios in giant zippy bags? Then I could just bury my face in there and die happily.:) Chocolate-covered pistaschios would be great too, as long as it’s white chocolate.

I wonder why pistaschios aren’t everywhere like almonds and peanuts are. I want pistaschio butter, pistaschio milk, pistaschio essence in shampoo.. OH MY!:)

Oh look at me, I’m NUTS.

Not Making It.

The IDEM-APDSA SLP didn’t work out for me. I’m quite bummed about that.
For lack of a better word, I kind of feel like poo.:(

I talked about this with Noelle last night, and she told me to just let it go. I had a “Frozen” moment and started humming “Bebaskan“, haha. Noelle said that maybe destiny wanted me to give chances to others. In 2013 alone, I got sent by my university to Korea, and then by the National Youth Commission to Indonesia. Noelle said that I probably wouldn’t have crazy fun there, so it could be why it wasn’t given to me. Well yeah, I think she was right.:)

Of course, I talked to my guy friends too. Tan Wen and I had a massive exchange of emoticons, and truly, Pusheen the Cat was abused. Oh man, TW made me feel a lot better! ..although I do feel the need to upgrade my Facebook Messenger emote library. My brother-from-another-motherland, Jackson was a bit sad too. He told me not to be so sad anymore and that there’d be more opportunities around. Of course, that meant so much coming from a co-JPI alumni.

Norman was out at dinner with his NS friend, Leonard, so as much as I wanted to talk to him the moment I found out, I had to wait for him to get on Skype. Before I got to tell him, he kind of already knew. He sent me a YouTube link to “Let It Go”– yes, the Frozen theme. The same one described when I was talking to Noelle. It’s kind of heartwarming when your best friend and your darling have pretty much the same line of thinking when it comes to dispensing advice. Norman was really sweet to me last night, that he even helped me with shoes at Zalora (retail therapy).

When people have great disappointments, I tell them that maybe the world isn’t ready for the greatness they are yet to show. I wonder if I should listen to my own advice, or if I should get real and accept that I’m damn weak, haha! Then again, my mom once said that fate is always fair and just, and that sometimes, we don’t recognize the good return when it comes back, because of how much it has grown. This is one disappointment. The only thing I can look forward to is what is yet to come.

Oh, by the way, I had a mini-realization.
Talked to four people about this. Of those four people, three are Singaporean.
So it’s kind of okay that I didn’t get to make the cut to Singapore this time.. because I have little pieces of Singapre in my heart anyway. Now, the only thing left to do is to get them to be obsessed with their teeth.:)