Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Foundation - Choosing the Right Foundation

Choosing the right foundation is a common problem for Filipinas. This is because Filipinas are generally dark skinned. For some reason, most women have issues with that. More often than not, women wear shades that are several shades lighter than their natural skin tone in order to appear fairer. The notion is, ofcourse, ridiculous. Foundation is not meant to change the color of the face. It simply evens out the tone.

World renown make-up artist Bobbi Brown says, "The right foundation will make you look like you're not wearing any foundation at all." In her book, Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual, she shares that to achieve this, there are two things that must be taken into consideration: formula and shade.

Foundations come in different formulas to cater to different skin types. Skin can either be normal, oily, dry or a combination of two, or all of the three.

People with oily skin should look into oil-free foundations, be they cream or liquid. Such foundations absorb oil and smooth the skin. For those who need it, they also provide good coverage for acne and large pores. People with dry skin, on the other hand, should look for hydrating or moisturizing formulas.

Combination skin is harder to work with. However, there are now products available that contain both silica beads, responsible for soaking up oil in the skin, and licithin, responsible for rehydrating the dry patches. People with combination skin should look into such products. They may, ofcourse, use moisturizers and oil-control products where needed instead. It is a matter of preference.

Once the right formula has been determined, it's time to select the right shade.

Pick out three colors close to your natural skin tone, preferably ones that are yellow-based, and create a line from just below the cheek to the jaw. It is safer to test foundation on the face that on the back of the hand. It is likely that they are not the same color. Once the three stripes are in place, look into a mirror under natural light. The right shade of foundation will look as if there isn't any make-up at all.

The result, if applied correctly, should be clear, smooth skin.

'til next time,

Monday, January 30, 2012

Haul - Sunday, January 29

I spent most of the weekend trying to recover from midterm week. I slept very little last week and basically lived off fast food. The result: three gigantic pimples on three very noticeable parts of my face. One was so big that I started calling it "Bob." I locked myself in my room Saturday, after my last exam, determined that Bob and his friends never see the light of day again. Nevertheless, on Sunday my family insisted that we, Bob, his cohorts and I, make an appearance.

In the end, I was glad I went out. I really needed a pick-me-up from the week before and hanging out with the family seemed to do the trick. We heard mass at the Limketkai Mall atrium, had lunch at Siam, then did a little shopping at the SM City Department Store. I admit, the last one was the source of my change of mood.

My family at Siam.

Here are the things I picked up at the Beauty section:

I picked up the Ever Bilena Mousse Eyeshadow because I saw the haul video Say did with Judy. The Maybelline the Magnum Volum' Express, on the other hand was recommended by my cousins Katrina and Cheska. The concealer I picked up because I needed one and it seemed worth trying out.

I'm going to keep this post short, but expect reviews for each product within the next week. Lectures are going to be down a bit, our professors giving us time to recuperate and all, so I will have the time.

'til next time,

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Foundation - Revlon PhotoReady

I know the web is probably littered with reviews for this product, but I'm going to throw mine in anyway.

I initially looked into Revlon's PhotoReady foundation because I wanted an alternative to all these high-end foundations on the market that work magic on your skin, but leave your pockets empty. At PHP925, the PhotoReady foundation showed promise. I decided to try it out.

I would have liked to swatch the colors against my skin before buying, but the SM Department Store where I bought mine didn't carry testers for them. As I am freakishly pale, I decided to get the lightest shade available. The bottle I took home was in Shell.

When I first removed the cover, I was happy to see that the bottle had a pump dispenser. I have bought a few foundations in the past that I would have considered getting again had the application process not been so messy. Pouring product from a bottle or squeezing it from a tube is just not as efficient as using a pump. I think that with a pump, you don't run the risk of wasting too much product. With the Revlon PhotoReady foundation, I didn't even have to push down all the way. Half a pump was more than enough.

As you can see, the gamble I took in buying the product without swatching it first paid off. Shell is my color.

The first thing I noticed when I applied the foundation to the back of my hand was the shimmer particles. These worried me at first. Would I end up looking like one of the Twilight vampires? I'm pretty sure my law professors would fail me if I started coming to class all sparkly. The College of Law at my university doesn't really appreciate the ostentatious. Fortunately, once I applied the PhotoReady foundation to my face and buffed it into the skin, it left only a dewy, healthy glow.

The photo above is of me with the foundation on. I'd already moisturized my skin prior to applying the foundation. Other than that, I have no other products on my face (Thus the horrid bags under my eyes). The photo below is of me and my boyfriend, Mark, at a wedding. This is what the foundation would look like with full make-up on. Photoready yet?

I would say that the Revlon PhotoReady foundation gives more of a light to medium coverage. I would not recommend it if you have acne or scarring on your face. I would also not recommend it if you have oily skin. The shimmer particles in the foundation will only make your face look shinier.

If you have dry to normal skin, this foundation is a must-have. It gives you a dewy, healthy glow that looks just as good up close as it does in photos.

This foundation is a steal at PHP925. The Revlon PhotoReady foundation is available at all leading drugstores and department stores.

I hope this helps those who are looking into getting this product.

'til next time,

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


I've been an avid supporter of Michelle Phan ever since I stumbled across one of her video tutorials on Youtube almost a year ago. In early December I found out that Michelle founded a company called Personal Beauty Discovery along with Youtube gurus Jessica, Promise, Bethany and Andrea. The company operates on a website dubbed MyGlam. The aforementioned Youtube gurus have come to be called the Glam Girls.

The website offers monthly as well as yearly subscriptions at $10 and $110 respectively. A subscription entitles members to what is being called a Glam Bag. A Glam Bag is a make-up bag full of deluxe samples and full-sized beauty products hand-picked by the Glam Girls. Collectively, the products in the Glam Bag, if bought at a drugstore or department store, would be worth a lot more than $10. In fact, the website boasts that the January Glam Bag is valued at $50. Ultimately, you are getting a lot more than you're paying for.

The only downside to the awesomeness that is MyGlam is that they do not ship internationally. Subscriptions are only available to those living in the US.

I signed up for my Glam Bag on January 9 so MyGlam should ship out my first bag in February. They're calling it the "Valentines Bag." Naturally, I had it shipped to a US address. It's going to my bestfriend in Kansas before it can make its way to me.

I might receive mine a little later than Valentines Day, as I live in the Philippines and have to wait on my friend in the US, but I am by no means less excited.

For those of you in the United States, sign up on the MyGlam website and get your subscription now! Support Michelle Phan and the Glam Girls!

'til next time,

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Lip Balm - Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters

I first learned of the Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters from a haul video (I'm not exactly sure whose) on Youtube some time in December. I would have headed out and gotten my own immediately, but unfortunately, they weren't available at the Revlon counter at the department store I frequent. The saleslady told me they'd yet to release the product in the Philippines. Bummed out over having gone all the way to the mall and having nothing to show for it, I went home.

Last Sunday, after mass, my grandmother, my mother and I decided to walk through the beauty section of that same department store to see if there was anything worth getting. Lo and behold! Proudly displayed on the Revlon counter, in an array of colors tagged with red stickers that read "NEW" on the covers, were the Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters.

I would have loved to splurge and dump as many colors as I could into my shopping cart. Sadly, it was not to be. They cost PHP525 each. Being a full-time student, that is just a little out of my price range for a lip balm. I ended up getting one anyway. Thankfully, my mother, dear that she is, bought two more. They're not mine, but at least I'll have access to them. I got one in the shade Creamsicle while she bought ones marked Raspberry Pie and Sugar Plum.

L-R: Creamsicle, Raspberry Pie and Sugar Plum

Considering that I was working with lip balms, I didn't expect the colors to be too pigmented. I was right. The one I got, Creamsicle, barely showed when I swatched it on the back of my hand. However, when I applied it to my lips, it left a frosted peach color that I found pretty. The one in Raspberry Pie came out darker than I thought it would, both on the back of my hand and on my lips. I mean that in the best possible way. The last shade, Sugar Plum, looked close to Raspberry Pie when I swatched it but turned out to be the most natural-looking among the three when I applied it to my lips.

Swatches are lined in the same order.

Now, I bite my nails and pull at my lips a lot. They're bad habits that I don't seem strong enough to break. They leave my lips dry and chapped. I try my best to keep them moisturized with different products but the effect never lasts. I was hoping the lip butters would remedy that. After all, the Revlon website says 94% of women claim their lips were softer, smoother, and instantly hydrated.

No make-up


Raspberry Pie


So, do the Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters achieve what they claim? Ultimately, yes, they do. My lips were soft and smooth on the day I decided to put them on. The pretty colors also kept me from biting my nails. This is a plus I'm sure only those who do the same can appreciate. However, there are several other lip balms that will do the same for a lot less than PHP525.

I'm glad I got to try the Revlon Colorburst Lip Butters, but I probably won't get them again. For something that should work as a lip balm, they are just too expensive. Spending PHP525 (more than my weekly allowance) would just be impractical. If you can afford it, then I suggest you give it a try. If not, there are a lot of alternatives you can look to for soft, smooth and hydrated lips.

I hope this helps those who are looking to get this product.

'til next time,

Thursday, January 12, 2012

What I Got For Christmas

Part of my new year's resolution is to keep this blog as up to date as possible. This is me doing my best to do just that. Now, I know I've boarded the "What I Got for Christmas" train a little late, but I'm pretty sure it hasn't left me at the station just yet. These are a few things I got for Christmas this year:

My cousin Katrina got me a gel eyeliner and a lip gloss from James Cooper's Jazzy Collection. Basically, I picked these out myself. We were Christmas shopping together and she was agonizing over what to get me. Finally, she asked me to end her misery and just pick something out myself. I was happy to oblige. I took her to Watsons and basically went over all the testers in every counter until I made my choice.

The gel eyeliner is in the color 04 which looks like an electric blue from the pot but when you swatch it comes out a lot darker. Obviously, I haven't used it yet as the color is a bit much for regular class. I'm waiting for a special occasion so I can try it out.

The lip gloss is in 004 which is a nude color. This one I was really excited about because I realized that I didn't have a nude lip gloss (I'm not sure how I could have gone without one for so long). This one glides on beautifully and has a hint of shimmer to it. It's moisturizing and the shade is natural enough that I can wear it every day. In short, I love it!

The next thing I got is from my Tita Juvy. She's pretty hip as aunts go. She keeps herself up to date with the latest trends in beauty so I shouldn't have been surprised when I opened my gift bag and found a Brush Guard variety pack. I was anyway. And I was thrilled!

I first found out about the Brush Guard through Michelle Phan, one of my favorite Youtube make-up gurus. She did a tutorial on how to clean your make-up brushes and when she set them out to dry she put them in Brush Guards. I immediately set out to look for them. Unfortunately, getting them from the Brush Guard website would lead to a shipping fee of over $30. That is about PHP1,300. The variety pack itself only costs $5. So, yeah, I was ecstatic to receive the gift.

I plan on getting more as soon as I can. I found out that Spruce at Limketkai Mall carries them. I'm not sure about this but I think it's on a pre-order basis. I'll check it out and leave the details here on my blog.

The last thing I got does not really count as a Christmas gift. It's more what we Filipinos call a pasalubong. A pasalubong is a gift one gives a friend or family member after returning from a trip; a homecoming gift. My Tito Brown and Tita Chona toured Europe some time in October and this is what they got me as my pasalubong.

It's the Sephora Moonshadow baked palette. I saw this on Sephora's website a few months back so I couldn't wait to try it out. I've used it so many times since I've received it, particularly the lighter shades. I use them in the inner corners of my eyes and they really help brighten them. I haven't used the darker shades as much but I'm looking forward to doing so. I imagine the blue in this palette will work well with the James Cooper gel eyeliner.

Here are swatches of the shadows in this palette.

Happy new year to everyone!

'til next time,

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Make-up Remover - Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes

The most important part of my daily routine comes down to removing my make-up at the end of the day. No matter how late I get in, no matter how tired I am, no matter how stressful my day, I make it a point to sit at my vanity and sweep whatever make-up remover I fancy at the moment over my face. My current favorite is the Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes.

I've been using the Night Calming towelettes for a few months now. The smell has a relaxing effect that helps me unwind after several hours of studying followed by several more hours of lectures and recitations. The convenience of being able to remove make-up, oil and dirt in one easy step is another plus as I am usually exhausted by the time I get home. All I have to do is go over my face with the towelette, then I can climb in to bed and get a good night's sleep. No need to rinse.

The formula is gentle enough that you can use it around the eye area, but effective enough that it even removes waterproof mascara. This is particularly important to me as I wear contact lenses which make my eyes extra sensitive.

For those of you who, like me, are little better than zombies at the end of the day, i definitely recommend Neutrogena Makeup Remover Towelettes in Night Calming. I get mine whenever I'm in Manila at the local Duty Free but I'm sure other supermarkets carry it too. You are confident that your face is free of make-up, oil and dirt PLUS you are assured enough sleep so you are well rested the next day. Give it a try!

'til next time,