August 31, 2009

Finding the perfect shade of red lipstick

This season, red lips is super hot. But I've always struggled to find the right shade of red. Either it looks too clownish or gothic. It's just never quite right. Also, you need to get a lip liner to give it the clear definition. It just seems like a lot of work for something that will smudge off in the middle of the day. 

BUT, I'm still in the quest to find my perfect shade. Even if it mean I will have to touch up for a ghastly 10 minutes during my lunch break to make sure it hasn't moved. 

So this is what I've decided to get during the Tangs sale tomorrow...

If my lighting is good, I'll post my Tangs purchases tomorrow. Stay tuned!

August 30, 2009

My Powder Foundation Compacts - comparative review

I've never really used powder foundations until I came to Asia. I find that my oily skin fares better with some form of compact. Even without powder, I start getting a shine after an hour. Frustrating as it is, I hate to touch up during the day. So for me it's important to find a powder foundation that gives me enough coverage without slipping mid-day. So here's a low-down of the powder foundations that I currently own. 
My shades are: Shu Uemura 974 Natural Glow, RMK 102, P&J 15 Sable (old formulation)

RMK Powder Foundation EX, SPF 24, Shade 102
First up, I got the new RMK Powder Foundation EX in Hong Kong. The retail price in Singapore is $105 I believe, which is horrendously expensive compared to other high-end brands. I've been using this recently on my travels. Honestly speaking, I'm not too impressed by the oil control as I develop a shine after a few hours. However, that said, the powder is incredibly soft and finely milled, making it a great choice for ladies with normal and dry skin. It does not come up as cakey and the color choices are plenty. The sponge is very soft and high quality.  Also, the powder is separated, with the top part with soft shimmer to give the skin a dewy look, whilst the bottom part with the usual matte powder.
My ratings
Value - 3/5
Quality - 5/5
Oil Control - 3/5
Coverage - Medium/Light
Cons - lack of oil control
Overall - 3.5/5

Shu Uemura Natural Glow Finish SPF 22, Shade 974
Next, my Shu Uemura Natural Glow in 974 in the fairest shade (yes, I really was that WHITE before!). It's probably my first powder compact, which was about 2 years ago. I only use it now and then as I've found better foundation alternatives. I've bought backups since then in other shades but I haven't even finished this one yet. The sponge that comes with it has already fallen apart. I had to buy the compact separately, which I don't like. The oil control is pretty good with this foundation and coverage is medium. However, that said, it can be quite cakey and not suitable for ladies with combination skin. The most obvious con with this powder is the tendency to oxidise big time. 
My ratings
Value - 4/5
Quality - 4.5/5
Oil Control - 4/5
Coverage - Medium
Cons - Oxidises easily
Overall - 4/5

Shu Uemura Depsea Perfect Water-in-cake Foundation, SPF 18, shade 775
I bought the next one on a whim, and not really considering whether it'll suit my skin. To be frank, I was quite disappointed with this range. It claims that it has deep sea ingredient making it hydrating to the skin. That is a whole load of BS in my opinion. In fact, it's so creamy and makes my skin feel like there's a third layer. After about 2 hours, the shine is really obvious. The color choices are a bit strange and comes across as quite yellow. It's also quite hard to spread unless your skin is super super hydrated. 
I think Shu Uemura has realised that it's not quite so good a range and has discontinued it. Again, you need to buy the case separately. 
My ratings
Value - 2/5
Quality - 2/5
Oil Control - 1/5
Coverage - Medium/high
Cons - strange color choice, hard to spread and weird packaging
Overall - 2/5 (I regret getting this!)

Paul & Joe Protective Dual Powder Foundation, SPF 25 PA++, Shade 15 Sable
Finally, the P&J Protective Dual Foundation. P&J has since revamped this line and it now comes in a pretty off-white casing. This is the old version and I got this at a discounted price. The powder quality is less superior than RMK but there is no oxidation at all which is a plus! On the pan, the color looks really dark but when swatched it gives a nice soft color that blends well with the skin. I will give ratings once I've tried this. 
My ratings
Value - 3/5
Quality - 3/5
Oil Control - 4.5/5
Coverage - light to medium
Cons - coverage is too light for blemishes and scars
Overall - 3.5/5

Anyway, hope that you are all having a wonderful weekend at home, watching the rain and all. I wanted to go do some yoga today but the rain didn't stop. So I'm at home mending a sick and stubborn bf who won't go to the dr. Men... they're all babies, i swear. 

August 23, 2009

Home sweet home and new pumps!

Its been a long and tiring week at work for me. So I was really happy to spend the weekend with my bf and undisturbed by pressing matters from work. In fact, I know that tomorrow is going to be nightmarish day, so I was just about to start finishing my reports until I realised that I haven't posted anything on my blog lately. So this is just a quick update...

I'll be flying to India again and I'm starting to feel the impeding stress from all the crazy sales targets. Although, a bit of retail therapy does help to soothe the anxious mind. With that in mind, I've been holding off makeup shopping recently simply because of the upcoming release of the Givenchy Les Poetiques Collection. I swatched a few of the testers at Isetan yesterday and I was really pleased with the blue eyeshadow palette. So I'm hoping that Changi T3 will have this collection out. I'm surprised that DFS releases some collections way way ahead than local stores (i.e. Guerlain Fall 09 collection).

The most impressive items from the Givenchy Fall 09 collection must be the blue liner, the blue eyeshadow and the lipsticks. Check it out while you still can. This is a collection you musn't miss!

I've just placed a Cherry Culture order for all NYX goodies, including the infamous NYX jumbo pencils. I figured that it's better to place the order online than to buy the crappy & probably expired stock from Guardian pharmacy. I can't believe the NYX line in Singapore is massively overpriced. It's often a wonder how these drugstores can still get people to buy when if you just pay slightly more, you'll be getting yourself MAC or high end goods.

There's a 20% off all orders on Cherry Culture. Don't miss this one out!

I've also been doing a bit of non-makeup shopping lately. Yes, I own ALOT of shoes but I've always had a weakness for Topshop shoes. Not only are they really funky London highstreet fashion but they're SO comfortable!

Well, I'm travelling again tomorrow so I had to get all my makeup organised. Here is what I'm bringing with me for 3 days. I must say I'm pretty simple when it comes to makeup. I always have my typical bases, one blush, one eyeshadow quad, 1 lippie, 1 lipgloss. It's not that I don't want my comforts with me, but rather i hate to unpack. I have a problem when I reach home and my suitcase will still be in the living room. After much ignorance, I realise that there's probably not much point to unpacking since I'll be packing again for my next destination. haha!
I bought myself this Laniege quad like eooons ago and I totally forgot about it, until I stumbled upon it. I'll be giving it alot more love after discovering that the colours are really suitable for work.

Anyway, I hope you have a wonderful weekend and I hope to post some pictures from India when I come back.

August 16, 2009

Paul & Joe 2009 Autumn Collection

Breathless... That's what the collection is called. Click on the images to expand...

Did I take your breath away? LOL!
Available in all P&J stores island-wide.

Cool Eyes for the Weekend

So yes, I'm back from Penang (2 days ago actually). I've been pre-occupied with my Eclipse book (part of the Twilight series). Oh my god, Bella Swan is quite a character in this series. I wish had a bit more special effects. But anyway, let me not side-track. I had to go to Penang for work and I had no chance to go to Georgetown unfortunately. It's a beautiful town with some great scenary and it's only an hour from the relaxing Langkawi.

This is my hotel room @ Gurney Hotel, very spacious. Not the best hotel I've stayed at coz it's quite old. But the location is perfect, where you can find plenty of food and beaches. A favourite tourist spot.
This is the view from my hotel room. Sorry, no pictures from outside coz I was stuck at meetings all day. Defeats the purpose, huh? But yeah, it's nice.
I was disappointed that I didn't get to eat penang laksa. I had to take some of my Indian clients out for their comfort food coz they can't eat the Malaysian stuff. So I went to this Indian restaurant called Palace of India. Very lavishly decorated with ornaments all over the place. Food was excellent as well. I highly recommend the mutton curry or whatever it's called.

I'm now back in Singapore, and god it's so friggin hot today. I was cursing & swearing on my way home when I had to walk this 5 minute stretch from the bus stop to my apartment. I was sweating a bomb and I hate wearing jeans in this kind of weather. I also can't imagine wearing foundation in this humidity. It's torturous!

But I was bored so today I did a EOTD with plenty of blues, teals & purples just to spice it up a little. Below, you'll see my base makeup (as usual). I've started to use Maquillage as my foundation as it covers my acne better than my other lighter foundations. I do find it quite cakey if you don't blend it enough. My acne has been bothering me big time lately. Possibly because I've started to use my Differin(R) gel again and it smells quite funny. I used it for 2 nights and BAM my skin overreacted! *sigh* So now I have a couple of zits like friggin volcanos on my face. :( Lesson learnt - never used expired products.

I never use blues, maybe because I'm too scared to look too overdone. But hey, doesn't hurt to experiment a little on the weekend.

First up, I used TFSI, followed by a silvery white cream base from the Maquillage palette. I then placed the Laniege teal color (G764 golden indigo) on the inner part of the eye blending it on the bottom lash line. I then placed the purple Shu Ueumura (ME 700) on the outer crease. To emphasise the crease, I used a black Shu Uemura (P 990) on the tip of the outer crease with a pencil brush blending the crease colors together. I used a pink Shu Uemura (ME 800) between the purple & teal to give a holographic contrast.

I lined my water line, then topped it off with MAC zoom lash.

Here's a close up.

I couldn' be stuffed using false lashes but I bet it'll look super hot. On the face, I used Pink swoon & a Lunasol glittery gold lipgloss.

Not too over the top. :)

Have a great Sunday afternoon chilling. Ciao!

August 11, 2009

Urban Decay Friends & Family Sale 30% off

From August 10-20th, Urban decay is having their F&F 30% sale. Wasn't it just yesterday that they were having a F&F sale? I don't know, I've lost count.

I've felt discouraged trying to scoop out the eyeshadow primer potion, so I'm now using Too Face Shadow Insurance. If I didn't buy this, I would have easily picked up the new eyeshadow primer potion with this new wand. Check this out:

Type FNFF1 on checkout for your discount. Happy shopping :)

Jill Stuart Summer 2009 Colors

I apologise for the lack of posts lately as I have been 1. very busy with work 2. lazy to use my work lappie to blog. But I do read everyone's blogs and I love that they can devote so much time & effort to keeping this writing hobby up. I must say, it's not easy! My schedule has been really intense lately so I have struggled to find the right lighting to do swatches and FOTDs so I apologise from the bottom of my heart! One day, I'll wake up early enough to do EOTD... (will I?)

So today I will be showing you the Summer 2009 collection that I got from Taiwan back in June. It's quite belated but this is my JS collection to date. Very small... for now. But I was drawn into the sweet & intricate packaging of this JS collection.

So I got myself the jelly eye color in 02 gold light, 01 baby blush (part of the permanent collection) and the 07 layered gem. These 3 things really blew a hole in my pocket so I found it easy to refrain from major damage. Lucky (& not so lucky) that JS can't be found in Singapore.

You can easily do soft smokey eye looks with this palette. I wish I got more of the jelly eye colors after watching Fuz videos!

The texture of the eyshadows are unbelievably soft. Pigmentation is amazing too but it does have a tendency to fall out especially with the chunky glitter. I find that particularly so from the first silver shade so I use this in moderation. All these shades have a subdued glittery effect. Glittery enough to give a three dimensional effect without looking OTT.

The jelly pots are quite fascinating! It's literally bouncy and spongy just like 8 year old boys playing gooey glow-in-the-dark playdough. And the gitter is INTENSE! I mean, it's really OTT so don't overdo it! I chose this color cos it has a gold & silver sparkle.

Now for the blush... isn't the packaging to die for? it comes with a separate brush, which I hardly use. The powder has a soft rose scent, but is not too overpowering. I got the baby blush as I didn't want to look too blushed on. Seriously, Asian ladies do have a tendency to pack on the blush which makes them look quite scary. I must agree it was a safe choice and I should try to explore more daring colors next time.

Individual swatches of the blush is very subtle. I apologise for the terrible ghastly white lighting but I am doing this at 9pm at night! The swatches actually look better in real life, very soft & gentle. Again, not too OTT.

I'll be heading to Penang for 2 days tomorrow, which is quite exciting... I've been asked to do some leadership reading. Alot to read with little spare time, but it's an interesting book with lots of good principles. I should do a couple of book reviews in a separate blog but here's what I'm reading right now.

Leadership has got nothing to do on what position or title you have. Most importantly, it's how you influence people. Everyone has an ability to lead, and these skills can all be developed.
So far so good...And guess what?! I've depotted all my MAC eyeshadows successfully without creating too much of a mess! I'm so happy :)
I will do a post on what materials I used and it's really easy! You don't even need to have a hair straightener to do this. These are all domestic products that you probably have at home. I'm probably going to get myself a few of the Starflash eyeshadows that have been released 2 weeks back (I think?) I hope you have a wonderful short week & I will update again when I come back Malaysia. Cheerios!

August 1, 2009

Mailbox surprrrissseee!!

Today is seriously my day for makeup! I had a nice surprise from my postman this morning with my delivery from borderlinx! For anyone who wants to buy from the U.S., Borderlinx is incredibly efficient! I think I've said that many times before, but they've never failed to impress me!
This is my belated MAC Sumo 25% off & the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. I've been a bit late on getting my goodies simply because I rather consolidate my orders and save on shipping costs.

This is what I hauled from MAC:
  • MAC 209 Brush
  • MAC Stars & Rockets
  • MAC Texture
  • MAC Expensive Pink
  • MAC Pro palette (never depotted my eyeshadows before...)
  • MAC Just a Pinch Gel Blush (Rose Romance Collection)
  • MAC Vanilla pigment (because everyone talks about it!)
  • MAC Loverock (am very late on this simply coz I wasn't too sure and then it sold out!)

I'm really looking forward to depotting all my MAC eyeshadows so I can give more room for my other makeup. LOL!

From Nordstrom, I got myself a re-supply of the Clarisonic sensitive brush head (pretty expensive at $25) and the Bobbi Brown nude palette that I was eyeing from the Isetan 10% sales. Couldn't help myself! :)

I need to book myself an eyebrow appointment... Can't possibly use eyeshadow with grizzy bear looking eyebrows! haha!

I'm wondering where I should get magnets & candle wax paper to depot all my current MAC eye shadows. Should I start with Daiso?

I always save the best for last... I'm more excited about this than all my makeup combined. Kate spade from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

Yes! A new wallet! I love leather & the colour is real nice and bright! woohoo!

I have a problem with collecting cards. I must get rid of some coz it'll eventually ruin any wallet. But isn't the inside really pretty? I love it! It's time to say goodbye to my freebie P&J wallet. Haha! Nice at first but eventually it just looks cheap (or maybe I'm sick of it).

Duty Free Haul # 2

Hi girls, I'm so sorry for the lack of posts in the last 2 weeks. Blogger still has some issues with MAC computers so I'm temporarily using my work laptop to write posts. I've also been working & travelling quite heavily, having just arrived back from Delhi this very morning. Everytime I go to India, I'm always amazed by the people and the culture. Although, I must admit that Indians have the greatest knack in surviving the worst conditions period. They have the worst pollution, too much red tape, terrible infrastructure, poverty striken, and the most unhealthiest diets. But here we're talking about the fastest growing economy and you can see it in the people. They are so hungry and passionate to make their society a better one. God, I love my job!
But before I ramble too much, I want to show you what makeup I packed for 5 days. Very minimal as you can see. I keep my makeup really nude when I'm having client meetings.

I did some duty free hauls @ Changi airport. I was so tempted to buy the new YSL fall 09 collection, which comes with 2 eyeshadow quads, a few new rouge voluptes, 3 cream blushes and I believe 1 beauty powder. This collection should already be at department stores.

I wasn't quite sure if I wanted this cream blush until I swatched it. It has a soft velvety touch! And the packaging (as with all YSL) is superb. I bought this colour in #2 and it's slightly cheaper in the airport (I believe at $55).

Here's the swatch after 1 swipe. It's the pinkiest of the 3 other cream blushes.

it spreads like a dream. It makes your cheeks have a natural flush, as opposed to Bobbi Brown's "look at my cheeks" pot rouges. BB pot rouges make me look like a tranny. Sorry for those who love it, but for me it just didn't work.

And I grabbed the eyeshadow quad instantly... guess which colour I bought...?

Yup, this one. Although, I realised that the top left colour isn't meant to be purple. Maybe this is the airport version? I don't know... But the actual color should be a grey, which you'll see in department stores. But anyway, I was drawn to the pink (left bottom color) and I was thinking "I must get this". lol! I'm such a maniac!

Yes, oh my god... when I saw this I got really excited. Luckily, my colleague has a transfer flight to HK and she bought this for me today to avoid taxes. It's the Guerlain Fall 09 collection out @ DFS! My heart was doing little sommersaults when I saw it from afar.

This is what I call love at first sight. I don't even want to use it cos it looks so pretty!

And the packaging is absolutely exquisite.

Here's a close up. I will do swatches later. I'm going to oogle at it some more before I mess up the imprints. lol! Yes, a sign of a beauty junkie... I know, I've heard it before!

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