Friday, October 31, 2014

Baby Hillary's fullmoon celebration!

One of my dearest friends recently gave birth, and just last weekend there was a party to celebrate the new addition to their family.



Congratulations to the new parents, especially to the beautiful mama who looks positively radiant! Not many words to share here, but it was an afternoon filled with laughter, photo ops and plenty of sweet treats spread on a sparkly, unicorn-themed decor.


Dearest Baby Hillary, 

May you grow up healthy, happy and always surrounded with love and joy!

xoxox

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Empties: September 2014

My empties posts are have been a little repetitive in the past months, as I have been sticking to a range of products which work for my skin type. I will probably cease writing them in 2015, instead focusing more on new additions to my beauty line-up. 

My beauty stash is considerably smaller compared to a few years back, and I've also learnt to read labels and be more conscious of the products I purchase as well. No more hoarding body lotions and buying 101 eye shadows or cleansers. I'm glad that I challenged myself to take on this monthly project as it really forced me to reassess what I needed and actually used.


I read somewhere that clay masks are all the same, the expensives ones do not differ much from drugstore brands, and after trying a number I think I am ready to agree. REN Invisible Pores Detox Mask worked the same for me as the other clay masks I've used. The only difference is, you are encouraged to gently rub off the mask (once dry) to exfoliate the skin. The CLARINS Extra-Comfort Cleansing Cream is one which I reach for when my skin is irritated, it soothes my skin while removing my makeup well. I only use this once in a few months which is why it lasted for so long (there's a new formula & packaging out already). 

The sukin Foaming Facial Cleanser which has been review many times. I always make sure to have at least 1 bottle backed-up. My final bottle of the Melvita Eau florale de Rose, and the CHANEL Le Blanc Serum which I used on my arms (too scented to go on my face, not ready to risk another round of breakouts). It has a nice scent and absorbs well, but brightening isn't one of my skin concerns. The La Mer Eye Balm Intense is a light eye cream, I do enjoy the La Mer signature scent and though this was nice and light, I have found similarly performing eye creams at a fraction of the price. The Lucas Papaw Ointment is a multi-purpose paste, I used it as a lip mask, as well as on dry elbows.


I've used the L'Occitane Volumizing Shampoo & Conditioner before and though I do like the scent, I've found a replacement for them which is less pricey and performs just as well. A staple in my bathroom is the CLARINS Tonic Bath & Shower Concentrate, I am going through all my travel sizes but I do have full-sizes backed-up. I just love the scent!

The Sephora Caramel shower gel was a nice warm scent, but I still much prefer the Laura Mercier Creme Brulee Bath Creme. I am also a hair mask addict, I usually use them in replacement of a conditioner. The Schwarzkopf Hydro Collagen Intensive Mask is a very light gel-ish mask which didn't weigh my hair down. It was okay, nothing special, the one with Liquid Keratin is much better.

My body lotion for the month was Sophie Monk x Little Twin Stars, which has a green apple scent. Absorbs fast but wasn't particularly moisturizing. Lastly, is the Smoothing Body Scrub which is from a redemption, I'm not too fussed with body scrubs as long as they don't hurt. It comes out in a pink paste and has the classic Clarins scent.

Total January - September: 103


Wednesday, October 29, 2014

SHISEIDO: Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate

Been so long since I've used anything from Shiseido! The last time was when I was still a teen and I remember persuading (hounding relentlessly more like it) my mother to get me the 3-piece kit from their Pureness range (probably lured in by the box set which none of the other brands had).

Yes, that is I floating in the reflection LOL
Almost every Asian skincare brand has a "pre-serum", here's an excerpt of what the Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate is:

"The ultimate concentrate for enhancing skin's inherent multi-defensive power against signs of aging, environmental factors and daily stress. 
Day by day, your skin becomes smoother and more resilient making wrinkles less noticeable and your complexion appears to glow with more radiance than ever. 
Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate is for all women of all ages. It works with your skincare to boost the benefits of your regimen, no matter your concerns.
Shiseido's exclusive Ultimune Complex helps boost defensive functions that have declined in Langerhans Cells, the cells that hold the key to promoting skin's multi-defensive power. 


In one week, skin appears to glow more than ever.

In 4 weeks: firmness and resilience are improved, making wrinkles less visible.
Apply morning and night after cleansing and softening the face. 


When using other serums, apply Ultimune first to enhance the benefits of the following treatments."


image source: Angelic Betrayal

The ingredient list doesn't look very promising for sensitive skin users (alcohol is second on the list!) but I was assured it would be okay. Tested it out for a week, applied 3 pumps religiously day and night. It absorbs fairly well and my face was left smooth but not in a silicone-y way. The floral scent is detectable but in no way overwhelming.

image source: Ashley Yeen

Mighty claims and though it didn't break me out or encourage oiliness, my skin didn't look quite changed. Somehow it was plump-ed up but my BB cream didn't look as smooth on. I did not experience any irritation with this product. The glass packaging is lovely on the counter but butter-fingers should beware. It has slipped my toner-wet-fingers at least once in the past week.

A summary of the "pre-serum"s that I've used:
SK-II Facial treatment Lotion: My face started breaking out on the second bottle, and the scent took a while to get used to.

Sulwhasoo First Care Activating Serum: My favourite of the lot, has a herbal scent but I like it, also absorbs very well. My skin liked this the best!

Clarins Daily Energizer Wake-Up Booster: Discontinued in Asia but I still have a bottle left. The scent is refreshing (orange?) and very light as well. It says to use before toner but I use it after.

Next on the list are: La Mer Treatment Lotion as well as the Estee Lauder Micro Essence.

If you've tried the above but haven't found a suitable pre-serum, this could be the product for you.


Shiseido Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate is priced at RM255//30ml and RM355//50ml.