Bite Beauty #TheMatteCremeLip Crayon Review

Nothing makes me more excited than getting stuff in the mail. It’s been a crazy, roller coaster month, but receiving the Bite Beauty #TheMatteCremeLip VoxBox from Influenster made it all bearable. Now I have new makeup to add to my stash and a new review to share to all of you! Like my Armani Beauty eye tints and Eccentrico mascara, these Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayons were sent to me complimentary by Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own.

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Shades of Red: NYX Cosmetics Review

A couple of days before I left the Philippines, I received a bag of goodies from NYX Philippines. It couldn’t come at a better time because I wanted to have new makeup for “the big move”. You know when you’re entering a new chapter in your life and you want everything to be fresh and new? That’s what’s happening to me. Aside from that, I love NYX! I’ve been slowly transitioning to environmentally friendly cosmetics and NYX is a perfect start–it’s certified cruelty-free according to PETA. Anyway, the package that I got contained a tinted moisturizer, highlighter, blotting paper, and three lip colors. Continue reading if you wanna know how they look when applied!

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Quickpost: DIY Gradient Lips

Not sure if you noticed but I haven’t posted anything for about a month. Many things had happened during my two-month vacation, I don’t know where to begin. Last month I had a spine condition that prevented me from going out of the house. The physician have ordered me to rest and not abuse my back by not wearing heels and carrying heavy loads. So even though I was on vacation, the pain on my back simply made it impossible for me to even enjoy my time off. Hence the lack of posts on this blog. However, I am now recovering and ending my absence with this quick DIY. 🙂

I have received many compliments whenever I wear this type of makeup. You’ve probably heard about gradient lips, especially if you’re a KPOP/KDrama fan. I’ve long noticed how Korean actresses’ lips look pouty and healthy without much effort. So I researched about it and found a technique that’s easy to do and perfect for my face.

All you need are these:

triptych

1) Your favorite pale/pink lipstick. I use NYX LSS550 Indian Pink. 2) A darker lipstick, preferably red. I use Rimmel Kate Moss 11 Rossetto lipstick. 3) Lip brush to even out the color.

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First thing to do is put your pale lipstick on both lip. Next is to dab a darker lipstick on the the inner area of your upper and lower lip.

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And then, gently purse your lips for a natural blend. On the right you can see how my lips looked after pursing them three times. I could see a bit of unevenness near the corner so I had to use the lip brush.

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Tap the brush on the lips gently until you see a natural-looking gradient. The following photos are the result. 🙂

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Today’s makeup:

Ben Nye colorless powder

EverBilena BB cream

Nichido mascara

ELF cream eyeliner

NYX Indian Pink

Rimmel Kate Moss Rossetto

 

What do you think? Have you tried wearing gradient lips?

DIY Matte Red Lips

Red lippies have been trending for quite some time now. The color makes a person look confident, but not many dare to wear it. I, for instance, only managed to pull it off last year. Red is too bold a color and catching unnecessary attention is the last thing I want. It may not be obvious, but I’m quite the shy girl. Charot, minsan lang. Haha

Aside from  the shade, matte lips are so in demand that many make-up store chains have released matte lipsticks. Matte lipsticks give a non-glossy finish, perfect for today’s season. Why you ask? Since the rainy (and windy) season has begun in the Philippines, it would be a tad bit impractical to wear a glossy lipstick when your hair is being constantly whisked. You wouldn’t want your hair sticking on your lips now would you? That’s kinda gross.

But what if you do not have a matte lipstick and the mall is a galaxy away? Not to worry, as this post is all about getting a matte red lips finish DIY-style. All you need are:

1. your favorite red lipstick

2. a powder (loose or compact, it doesn’t matter);

3. a small brush; and

4. a single-ply tissue.

When you have all the items, apply your favorite lipstick; I’m using ELF’s royal red. Once finished, blot the lower and the upper lip using the single-ply tissue. Do not remove the tissue just yet.

Second, using your small brush, dab on powder. I’m using Blush’s flat brush and Majolica Majorca face powder.

Then, pat the brush with powder on the tissue, as shown. Trace lips as if you’re putting on a new layer of lip gloss and push the powder through the tissue.

Do the same procedure on the upper lip. Afterwards, remove the tissue. What’s great about this procedure is that you’re assured that your lips won’t get the cheese effect, which usually happens when you place powder directly on the lips.

You should get a result similar to this:

Glossy no more! Yay! As you can see, the color looked richer in matte and, erm, fresher? If in case there are gaps after removing the tissue, you can apply a bit of the lip color on the gaps; a lip liner is also a great alternative. This seldom happens, however, if you have previously applied a generous amount of lip color/stick prior to blotting.

So that’s it! Just dab a bit of blush on the cheeks, nose bridge, and chin to get a natural finish. Red lippies are already  attention-grabbers, so make sure not to overdo your make-up. I would recommend some mascara and no eyeshadow. Simplicity is key.

I hope this tip helps. Remember that you don’t always have to purchase new stuff just to look good. ;P Ciao!

Skin Care for the Night Owls

Health and skin care is probably two of people’s top concerns when working at night, or popularly called as the “graveyard shift.” I’m no doctor or dermatologist, but I have always been very careful when it comes to my skin, facial skin at least. This year, I accepted a job that requires me to work at night. I edit articles for a US-based company, so naturally I have to comply to their working schedule. My first month was a tad difficult, as I had to adjust practically my whole life—sleeping and eating schedule, skin care regimen, time for peers/family, etc. Before signing the contract, I already researched for the harms that my new schedule could possibly inflict on me and some ways to prevent them. Just imagine how difficult it is when one’s body clock which is programmed (for more or less two decades) to work in the day and rest at night is forcibly altered.

Okay, enough blabbing. Haha. Perhaps one of the unpleasant effects of night shifts is skin aging, and eventually the appearance of eye bags, dark circles, wrinkles, and acnes. Sad, I know. Fortunately, the maarte in me found solutions for those problems:

I have shared repeatedly that great skin always starts with clean skin. Before doing anything else with you face (yes, both before and after putting on make up), always wash it with facial foam that is suitable to your skin type.

There are five basic skin types [source]:

1. Oily– if you have large pores and frequently get blackheads and blemishes

2. Combination– if you have smooth skin, medium pores, and is slightly oily in the T-zone

3. Sensitive– if you have thin skin that is prone to allergic reactions and rashes

4. Dry– if you have tight skin that is prone to flaking and wrinkles

5. Sun-damaged – if you have tight skin with visible wrinkles

I have combination skin type so this acne oil control facial foam from Nivea is just perfect. Afterwards, tone  to further cleanse your skin.

Now the last step is quite tricky. Before, I would just wear a regular moisturizer. That was when I had a “regular” life. But since staying up all night can leave undesirable circles and eye bags and speeds up skin aging, I’m now using a special range of products from Nivea. We don’t wanna look 40 when in reality we’re just 20-something, do we?

I’ve read numerous reviews about how excellent this eye cream is, and I must also say that I’m pretty satisfied with it. I’m nearing my fifth month as a night owl worker and I don’t have dark circles yet, and I look fairly the same as last year. I now have eye bags though, but unfortunately creams can’t mend that problem (but I heard tea bags work wonders). But hey, at least I don’t have dark circles and wrinkles.

Now for the rest of the face, I wear the day cream before going to work and the night cream before sleeping. I read somewhere that the skin absorbs moisture much faster when we’re sleeping.

That’s probably the reason why night creams are thicker than day creams (as seen above).

Retaining your skin’s moisture is vital in maintaining a younger-looking skin. It’s not necessary that you use the exact same products. I just think that some night owls who complain they are looking older and stressed tend to neglect their skin’s needs. Really, the 3-step process (cleanse, tone, and moisturize) is not really that taxing.

Also, aside from the 3-step process, us people who work at night should always be wary of the food we eat and our sleeping schedule. Nothing beats a balanced diet and enough sleep. The 3-step process is just ancillary. Ciao! 🙂

My Everyday Make-up (Video Tutorial)

Most men dislike girls who wear make-up.  That’s a fact. Last year though, I was able to “perfect” a barely-there make-up that can be worn everyday. Chad would always tell me how much he loves my make-up because, according to him, I still have that natural glow after application. Well, he’s right. The problem with wearing make-up is that even though it enhances beauty and hides imperfections, everybody knows it’s not your “real face” they’re seeing. Hence, they exclaim: Uy, ‘di kita nakilala ah. Ang ganda mo ‘te! Haha. I dunno if I’d be happy with that one.

Also, there are women who, unfortunately, have very sensitive skin. Some could not handle too many cake and powder on their skin, causing them to get allergies and irritations. So with all these in mind, I thought, hey, maybe I could share to everyone my everyday make-up–foundation-free! I may not have sensitive skin, but I don’t like layers on my face and feel eeky sticky at the end of the day. I’ve been wearing this look for a year now and I must say it has worked wonders for me.

Below is a video tutorial I made yesterday. I have also indicated below the instructions, in case you don’t get to read the subtitles. I hope you find this helpful! 🙂

STEP ONE: Cleanse and tone. Never put on make up without washing your face first. I use Nivea Acne Oil Control Facial Wash and Nivea Refreshing Toner.

STEP TWO: Moisturize. Any moisturizer will do. I use POND’S Flawless White Blemish Prevention UV Cream.

STEP THREE: Conceal. Use a concealer that matches your skin tone to hide imperfections. I use BasicBeauty concealer stick in Light.

STEP FOUR: Apply blush. Blush powders are easier to work with than cheek tints. I would recommend Ever Bilena’s Rose blush powder. Smile! Then, apply blush on the apples of your cheeks.

STEP FIVE: Line lippies. Others would tell you to use a lip liner darker than your lipstick. I don’t follow that though. I use Ianti’s lip liner in Nude. It matches all lip colors.

STEP SIX: Apply nude lipstick. I am obsessed with Nudes. Here, I’m going to use Ianti’s Nude lipstick. I use it as my lipstick base, if there is such a thing. 😛

STEP SEVEN: Choose a shade that resembles your lip color. As you can see, I overuse Elf’s peach lip color. Hehe. It looks natural but, at the same time, refreshing. 🙂

STEP EIGHT: Define eyebrows. I’m partial to brown eyebrow pencils. The color makes people look younger (I think).

STEP NINE: Apply mascara and define lashline. I’ve been using Nichido ColorEyes mascara duo stick for years. It’s very affordable but always delivers. I don’t use eyelash curlers by the way; I just apply mascara in upward direction, but you’re free to use one if you want. 🙂 I always use the liquid one when defining my upper lashline. To create the perfect line, stretch the skin a bit then apply liner as shown. Remember, the goal is to look natural, so do not apply too much. Just follow the contours of your lashline.

STEP TEN: Set make-up by applying powder. These actually do the trick–Yep, a brush and loose powder. It does not rob the skin of ITS natural glow, unlike when we use foundation and/or pressed powder. Do not forget to apply powder on your neck. 🙂

OPTIONAL: Highlight nose bridge. While others would use brown make-up to highlight the contours of their nose, I use my concealer. ‘Learned it from a few make-up artists. 😛 Apply, then blend. 🙂

 

Sound off in the comments section if you have questions. Thanks for dropping by!

And oh, please do share and subscribe to my Youtube channel. Oha. 😛

Florals + Stripes = Happiness

Hiiii! 😀

Spamming your screen with lots of florals and stripes. The top is actually a crop top. Bought this somewhere outside Divisoria Mall. I couldn’t resist the cuteness of the heart patch so I bought it. Who would like to guess how much this costs? 😛

 Boater hat and lace bag from Cocco

The maxi skirt is actually a maxi dress. I wanted a different top so I just folded it inward and fastened it with a handwoven belt to hold the dress and make it look like a real maxi skirt. Cool huh? 🙂

I was trying to make my hair look messy here. FAIL. :-/

Hype this look on lookbook and chictopia! ::)

Clogs-like heels from Tiffany

See the rings? I’m selling rings like those in my online shop. Like Zeros and Fives on Facebook to view cutie patootie accessories on sale. 🙂

 Photos by Sam Lim.  Like his Facebook page and visit/follow his website to see his other works and learn photography tips.

Make up by Ana Patricia Mendoza. Like her Facebook page to see her other works.

Thanks to Haydee Suarez for editing the last two photos!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for the love and support before I am denied the chance. Recent events made me realize how precious life is, and how short it is to waste it on hatred and regret. I may have not gotten everything I wanted , wished, and prayed to God every night, little blessings still manage to find me and I am grateful for that. But somehow it also makes me sad not having to properly recognize those kind people who, in their own ways, lent their hands when I needed one. I hope I’m not too late. Thank you. 🙂

I’m planning on a new blog giveaway so stay tuned. Follow me on Twitter for the announcement!

Peace x Love

Michael Cinco for America’s Next Top Model

Another feat for the Philippines! In episode 8 of America’s Next Top Model Cycle 16, a Filipino designer was featured. Michael Cinco, who is currently based in Dubai, was a guest designer for ANTM last week. The models used his creations for the photo shoot:

Alexandria Everett

Alexandria received the first call out and precedently won the episode challenge. I’m beginning to like her, though I’m not sure if her nicey-nicey attitude is  a facade or not. But at least she’s keeping her promise to Tyra.

Hannah Jones

Hannah poses really good, high-fashion style. I’m in love with he dress. Yay to Michael Cinco!

Molly O'Connell

Molly is developing a nasty attitude lately and sad to say that it’s affecting her performance, especially in between photo shoots and challenges. However, when she’s in front of the camera, she always delivers. ‘Love the corset!

So those are my top 3 picks for the episode. Unfortunately, the sweetest girl of the bunch got eliminated, Jaclyn Poole, because she sometimes have trouble controlling her face especially her mouth.

Kudos to her for getting the best photo in episode 7 though!

Jaclyn Poole

***All photos from America’s Next Top Model Flickr

Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser Review

I thank my parents for blessing me with not-so-sensitive facial skin. When I was growing up, I never had problems with pimples. Yeah, I do get a pimple when my period’s coming, but that’s it. I was never and still am not afraid to try every facial cleanser available in the market because I know I’m not allergic (or sensitive) to any. The worst thing a facial cleanser could do to me is give me dry skin, which I already hate.

I’ve been using Pond’s since college and it has never failed me, except for the dryness it occasionally leaves my skin. I use it night and day, so I figured that maybe I should use a milder facial cleanser to remove dirt and makeup.

I have known Cetaphil way back, but I never considered using it, thinking that it should only be used by people with grave skin problems. There’s something about the brand name and logo that’s so clinic-ky, so I never bothered. Blame it on my judgmental nature. Chos.

If not for the makeup artists I’ve met, I would have not gotten acquainted with Cetaphil’s uses. They use Cetaphil as makeup remover, using a wet tissue and spreading it all over my face. I really liked how it makes my skin feel, so I decided to get one for myself:

It’s quite expensive for a 60 mL, priced at a little less than Php 200.

CLAIMS:

Cetaphil® Gentle Skin Cleanser is great for daily makeup removal. Originally formulated for dermatologists, this cleanser is gentle on your skin and sensitive to your skin’s needs. Cetaphil® Gentle Skin Cleanser will not strip the skin of natural protective oils or emollients, or disturb the skin’s natural pH balance. Recommended for years by dermatologists, it is fragrance-free and non-comedogenic. Cetaphil® Gentle Skin Cleanser is gentle enough for children, teens and adults.

Non-comedogenic means it does not clog pores, which somehow puzzles me because it doesn’t have scrubs or something, not that I’m saying cleansers should always have scrubs to unclog pores.

The best thing about this cleanser is that you can use it without water.

Hello, dry skin. I decided to use my unmoisturized hand to give you guys a preview of how Cetaphil would look like when used.

Just apply it on your skin and rub gently to remove dirt. You’ll need a wet tissue or a soft cloth to remove the excess cleanser.

Let the thin film dry up after rubbing and removing excess cleanser.

 

Look at the difference. Please don't mind the change in tone, I dunno how it happened. Hehe 🙂

I was pretty amazed myself after using it. My skin became smooth and soft, I need not apply moisturizer after!

True to its claims, Cetaphil is soothing, mild and fragrance-free, unlike other facial cleansers smothered with perfume (which, I believe, makes cleansers harsh to the skin).

I give the product a good ten. 🙂

Visit their site for more information about their products.

Revlon PhotoReady Compact Makeup Review

As I have shared in my previous post, I always consider performance and cost in purchasing makeup. The case is different when I buy foundation, (although I never bought one in my life until this past Saturday) it’s the base for your makeup and it covers the entire face so you can’t risk buying a defective one.

I’m a compact/loose powder type of person and never liked wearing foundation (be it powder or liquid) in my ordinary everyday life. But since Saturday’s events required me to buy one, I headed over to Revlon. I have heard good reviews about it so I decided to go for it. With eyes shut, I pulled out Php1,000 and paid for Revlon PhotoReady Compact Makeup:

The Revlon PhotoReady Compact Makeup is different from the Revlon PhotoReady Makeup. The latter is only liquid, while the former is like a compact powder and liquid foundation in one.

What’s inside is a cream-like substance that turns to liquid when you push the screen. The compact comes with a sponge. Sorry if it looks used already. Couldn’t wait to try it:

CLAIMS:

-Perfected, poreless airbrushed skin in any light
-Liquefying screen turns cream to liquid, then dries to a soft powder finish
-Photochromatic pigments bend and reflect light to help erase every flaw
-SPF 20
-Oil free, fragrance free.
-Complete, yet virtually undetectable coverage.
-Soft luminous finish

(Source)

Below are a Before-and-After shots.

BEFORE: Bare-faced me

It’s not obvious here but I happened to have red spots on my cheek. I dunno how I got it, but I tried Revlon nonetheless.

AFTER: With Revlon PhotoReady Compact Makeup

I only applied a few strokes and the skin tone evened out. Unlike other foundations, Revlon PhotoReady gives very natural coverage, true to its claim above. It doesn’t clump either, even when you perspire. There are also some silverdust-like thingies when it’s applied. That’s probably what Revlon calls as photochromatic pigments which help give that flawless finish when photographed. I used it for an afternoon photo shoot here along with this one.

The best thing about it is that it has long staying power, that if you plan on wearing it until midnight, you need not worry about reapplying. Below is a photo of me after the photo shoot:

I'm the one at the middle. I still looked fresh (minus the eye bags. HAHA) even if it was already 11 in the evening. No re-application was done, honest. (Photo credit: Aiza Labios)

Revlon PhotoReady Compact Makeup comes in 7 different shades–ivory, vanilla, shell, natural beige, middle beige, cool beige, and rich ginger–so you can identify easily and correctly the most suitable shade for your skin. I used natural beige. 🙂

No wonder it costs so high. It delivers.

Have you tried it, too? What do you think of it? 🙂

Conceal That Spot: Basic Beauty Concealer Review

One thing I learned about shopping for make-up is to try the testers AND that you are never required to buy an item after testing it. The tester is there to give you an idea of how it looks and feels–if it’s what you need or if you’re not allergic to it. Another thing is to not buy at the same day of testing. You wouldn’t know if you’re allergic to that product if you buy it rightaway; the best thing to do is to let it stay on your skin for a few hours, or minutes.

With these learning in mind, I went to every make-up counter at Landmark and tried the stuff I needed for a photo shoot the next day (obviously, I was tasked to be the make-up artist). I started from Revlon, CoverGirl, Fanny Serrano, Nichido, Ever Bilena, Basic Beauty, to Ianti. I’ve been looking for the best concealer in malls, and by best I consider performance and cost. Yeah sure, Revlon, MAC, CoverGirl, and other make-up giants may be one of the best performing ones out there, but their cost are too hefty for students and even for average wage earners like me. Nichido was my best friend for years, but I constantly had trouble with it whenever the room temperature gets high. It sort of melts and looks eeky, it starts to stick on its cover and case. I never wanted that kind of trouble, very untidy.

So I headed to Basic Beauty. I was a little skeptical testing their items at first. Their packaging is not as impressive as the others, you know. It’s pretty obvious that it’s a new brand:

But since the sales person was very nice, I let her introduce to me the product. I asked questions after (if the brand is new, if it melts in high temperature, blah blah blah). It’s the brand’s best seller, she said, even if it was just recently launched. Below are the other claims:

  • It’s hypoallergenic.
  • It’s dermatologist-tested.
  • It’s fragrance-free.
  • It’s doesn’t clump nor chalk.

Sorry, I used it already after taking this shot that’s why it looks a little, uhh, used. 🙂

True enough, I didn’t get any uncomfortable feeling when I tested it. It blends really well on my skin, plus it’s a little dry so there was no sticky feel either. It’s like a compact powder with concealing abilities, you know what I mean? It looks very natural!

BEFORE

I don’t know if you can see them, but I have thin lines below and at the corner of my eyes. The color of my eye area is also uneven with the rest of my facial skin.

AFTER

Lines are gone. And the skin is toned and even. (The After photo’s brightness changed a bit, one light in our office got switched off while I and my friend was taking this. Sorry, but I assure you, there were no manipulations.)

The product has three variations–light, medium, and dark to suit every skin tone. I used light, I have a pale face. Anyhoo, this concealer costs a meager Php179.00. Slightly pricier than Nichido, but it’s worth the extra pesos. I found Basic Beauty in Landmark, Trinoma, so I believe it’s available in all Ayala Malls. Like their Facebook page to get updates on their products.

Check here for studio shots where I used the concealer.

On a totally unrelated note, I know this Before-and-After photo might freak you out a bit. I was. HAHA. Reminds me of The Ring. Creepy. Bye! 🙂

The Second First: Make-up Artistry

If last week was my first official styling gig, yesterday was the first time I “painted” someone else’s face for a photo shoot. Not that I’m new at it, I’ve always loved painting my friends’ faces and mine but it’s all for fun. It’s quite nerve-wracking seeing your work being taken by the lens, unsure if what you did fell short, or is over-the-top, or is just right.

Thankfully, it turned out fine.

What do you think?

I can only do natural looks or barely there make-up because that’s what I wear everyday. I also had immense difficulty with the model’s lips because they’re too thin (which I so want. Haha). Using a lipliner, I lined past her real lips to make it look thicker (or at least I thought it did).

Model: Maribeth Balay

Photographers: Kendrick Go and Cristina Brito

I have not blogged for almost a week, and the whole team was awesome enough to let me model, too, so I brought one ensemble. Yay! Hello Lookbook and Chictopia post!

Hype the look on Lookbook and Chictopia.


Yesterday was so fun. Too bad I didn’t get to stay longer, I and my old high school friends had to meet to watch the pyrolympics at SM Mall of Asia. I was so tired that day I was sleeping while on the way to the mall. Hehe.

Thank you Cristina Brito, Philip Jara, and Marc Wew for the photos! 🙂