March 29, 2011

A splendid haul from Paul & Joe Beaute

Posting some belated hauls... first one up, Paul & Joe:

Last week, I took the opportunity to haul the splendid deal from Paul & Joe. It consists of four products plus one makeup bag, valued at S$98. It's a deal worth noting because the cumulative regular prices would easily exceed S$200!

And I had a $50 Isetan voucher that I had to use up, so even better.

You get the following products in this value set:

+ Pressed Powder N with Powder Case - choice of your preferred shade
I chose Shade 04, a light lilac shade to illuminate and brighten my complexion.

+ Moisturising Compact Foundation (refill) - choice of your preferred shade
I have the shade in 10. It's a product that has been sold at expos and the Prestige Warehouse Sales, but it seems ok upon touch. It might be a little too moisturising for humid climates but lets see how it performs in colder climates.

+ Protective Foundation Primer UV 02
I did a short review of this primer in 01. You may read my thoughts on the formulation here.

+ Portable Face Color Brush
A retractable brush for anyone on the go. The hairs are quite soft but not as dense as I thought it would be.

+ Makeup bag
A gorgeous makeup bag which can store heaps of products! I don't think this was part of the value set, but the lovely SA switched the other slim pencil case with this one. :-)

There are limited stocks from what I can recall. So if you're keen on some P&J base makeup, don't be slow to pick one up!

Missing home already on my first day in Denmark

Random photo of the day. I'm linking all other pictures in my entry here to avoid duplication.

Don't think I will ever have Chinese food in Denmark. Maybe if I'm desperate.

Why you may ask? Because the most popular dish would probably be sweet and sour pork.

Incredibly busy next few days with meetings and more meetings. Taking over the apartment keys this Friday and I'm crossing my fingers that my apartment is decent and liveable. I didn't even have an opportunity to view the apartment or see any pictures!

Hello from Copenhagen! First day and initial thoughts

12 hours later, I arrived in Copenhagen airport with a total checked in baggage of 45 kg and cabin baggage of 25kg. Don't ask me how I managed to get away with it, but I am certainly grateful to have all my bags of makeup with me. With an exception of a few things that I had to dispose or give away due to airline weight restrictions. This is a reason to celebrate!

Upon arrival, I decided to explore the city with my trusty DSLR. I wanted to play around with my camera aperture but in the end, just programmed it to auto because it was super chilly at 2 degrees celsius. Fingers just do not operate very well in near zero degree temperatures.

The view right outside my hotel - Marriot Copenhagen.

S-Tog, trains that take you arounnd Copenhagen. Here I am situated at Kopenhagen H station.

The view is really peaceful, but I wish pictures could show you how incredibly windy Copenhagen is.

Venturing into the main shopping district of Copenhagen, Ostergade and Kobmagergade. Pebbled streets wave around the city with pedestrians in casual-chic fashion.

They have the usual shops in the precinct, but with 25% VAT as 'ice cream topping'. lol.

I wish I knew the name of this fountain. This was my landmark when I got lost in the city today.

Danish pastries for the sweet tooth.

Immediately I had to check out the drugstore range in Copenhagen. Matas, the equivalent of Guardian and Watsons in Singapore, is the only source of toiletries. Surprisingly, it stocks high end cosmetics and skincare like Chanel, Biotherm, Clarins etc, as well as the usual Loreal, Maybelline, Maxfactor, Gosh cosmetics, and more. The difference is that the floor space is not as crowded as Watsons (and there is much less selection as well).

I ended up getting the Aussie shampoo and conditioner, because they were the only products I could understand from a shelf of Danish. It's pretty funny in retrospect. The shop assistants were all approaching me with Danish, and I was wondering what I was wearing today that made me look like such a local. 

Well, today is not a time for venturing into Danish cosmetic brands. Today is a time to reminisce and feel homesick. Already? Yes, very much so. How I wish I could dig into $5 chicken rice.

Some of you would already know that I have a separate blog called Living Denmark. If I keep up with 2 blogs, I feel that it might be quite alot of effort to maintain. Now, I have a question to ask you... Would you prefer to have my posts on travels & Denmark in a separate blog and keep this one here focused primarily on beauty? Please let me know by writing your comments below!


March 28, 2011

Sakura Collection by Shu Uemura with Mika Ninagawa

Mika Ninagawa is a Japanese photographer and film-maker and is known for her vibrant and colorful photography, where she yet again collaborated with Shu Uemura to launch their new limited edition Sakura Collection. 

The Sakura Collection celebrates their one-year anniversary of their UV Under Base Mousse, a revamp of their bestseller item. The improved formulation is 20 times lighter than the original release, which I own so many bottles of.

Two of their UV Under Base Mousses, Pink and Beige are part of their regular line. In addition, BB Beige, which has a somewhat creamier BB texture and shade, is LIMITED EDITION. Mika Ninagawa's work is beautifully captured on the packaging of each bottle, emphasising the sakura - Japanese cherry blossums.

"My favorite flower is the sakura. Japanese sakura is truly beautiful. During the sakura season, my heart beats faster with excitement and I can't stop myself from going out. I adore sakura. I think the most beautiful thing about sakura is the moment it falls. Japanese people, including myself, are deeply moved by how the blossum fleetingly, then their beautiful petals scatter gracefully"
-Mika Ninagawa

It is with much excitement myself to test out these products. Personally, I started venturing into makeup using Shu Uemura products, and one of them being the UV under base mousse. I still own multiple bottles of the old formulation when I heard that they were discontinuing it, and in self-inflicted fear, bought backups (just in case).

What is so special about the new UV Under Base Mousse, is that it doubles up as a sunscreen and a lightweight primer giving your complexion an unparalleled flawlessness in evenness and glow. It works like a second skin, and combines fabulously with powder foundation to achieve great-looking skin.

These retail for S$78.

Takashimaya has released this collection exclusively on the 25th of March, and other counters from the 1st April. From what I already see, all shades of the UV Under Base Mousse is flying off the shelves. This is a collection worth getting excited about, and I can honestly testify to that.

Lets talk abit about the formulation, shall we?

+ Silcoat - a technology which diffused into a patent pending liquid foaming stabilizer to maintain ideal balance between water and gas phase. 

In other words...

You will get an even amount of powder product, UV filter, hyaluronic acid, betaine, aquatoril ingredients in each dispensed amount due to Silcoat. It prevents the 'gas' bubble from coalescing, which then translates to the innovative mousse formulation. Of course, its all the ingredients combined in the product that give you the final effects but the formulation delivery is very innovative in my opinion.

You already know that there are 3 shades... but how different does it appear on the skin?

It almost looks like a light sorbet. From left to right, beige, pink and BB beige.

And if I flip my hand horizontally, you can see that the formulation has tact on skin and is not watery at all. Because of its mousse-like texture, it is better to smooth this on your cleansed and moisturised face, with the pentagon sponges. They sell these in packs of 6 at Shu Uemura and they are of great quality.

Ok, one more time... I dispensed way too much earlier.

+ Beige - Gives a natural healthy looking complexion
+ Pink - Tints the complexion with radiance
+ BB Beige - like a BB cream in shade, but lighter in texture. Great for girls on the go, who don't want to apply a thick cream to achieve an even complexion.

Pink and Beige are definitely lighter in texture. BB Beige is more creamier and has more coverage.

After it settles down, you can only tell a marginal difference in color. Only upon closer observation will you notice that pink does illuminate the skin slightly. BB Beige still retains its coverage.

(sorry, I wish I had photoshop to put some separators but I'm working from a remote computer in an empty apartment!).

Also in this collection features a limited edition powder foundation case, which you can pop in the refills.  easily. This retails for S$25.

And that's not all ladies, there are also six sakura inspired colours, of which the packaging also reflects a nice pink hue. All shades are of pink tones, and everyone being a big fan of pink, will easily find a shade that they will cherish.

Above, I have here PK 356 (the brightest pink! A beautiful eye capturing shade) and BG 932 (a classic nude). Each retails for S$39.

And yummy candies that Shu Uemura gifted me. Of course, being a greedy sweet tooth that I am, I immediately opened it up like a fat kid on a smartie.

And now I leave you with some dazzling works of Mika Ninagawa on Yu Yamada.

Please visit for more details and pictures on the Sakura Collection.

*Disclaimer: all products and some photographs were given to me for PR consideration. All stated opinions are mine. 

March 25, 2011

Testing out new base makeup products from P&J, Armani, Anna Sui

I am seriously addicted to base makeup products. I just keep on hauling and hauling base makeup, like my face is as big as a stadium.

So today's short post will be on a few new things that I've started to break into.

Paul & Joe Protective Foundation Primer UV
Anna Sui Pressed Powder (not sure if this is the exact name)
Giorgio Armani Lasting Silk UV Foundation #5

I would say that I probably own more Paul & Joe makeup over any other brand. I love their girly packaging and floral scent in their products (nailpolishes included!). The first time I used Paul & Joe, it was love at first swipe.

What I did notice at first is that the texture of the Paul & Joe Protective Foundation Primer UV is fairly emollient over the Moisturising Primer. I thought that it might actually make me more oilier during the day. But I say it's decent. My t-zone produces oil like a factory trying to supply global demand for ipad2! 

When the primer does settles into my skin and almost disappears to leave a thin veil, I noticed a slight sheen. Almost dewy, but not illuminescent. I am guessing that the high SPF factor of 40 plays a part to this slight dewiness, although I can't be sure. It doesn't change your skin tone or add any radiance, which admittedly I have grown to appreciate with my over-fatigued complexion.

Here I am using Giorgio Armani Lasting Silk UV Foundation. This foundation is fast becoming a favourite of mine, with it's light to medium and long-lasting properties. It's truly a beautiful foundation and I have already received compliments. It feels like second skin and looks almost like I have perfect skin.

I finished off with a sweep of Anna Sui's Pressed Powder, which I'm afraid I can't remember the name or shade because I threw all my boxes away! It has no shimmer particles in this pressed powder, and is a joy to use because of its usual Anna Sui's rose-like scent.

And I do notice that Anna Sui and Paul & Joe are both manufactured by Albion Co., which probably explains why I can easily confess my obsessions on the product formulation from both companies. Fair statement?

So how did the primer and foundation fare in terms of long-lasting and oil-control? After a good 8 hours in the office, running around doing errands, and gulfing down the best ever hot Sichuan noodles for lunch. I would say my face was slightlier oiler than normal at 5pm. I definitely felt uncomfortable with an oily t-zone by then. However, the combination of the primer and foundation still did fairly good considering that I never blot.

I'm not sure if I'm completely swooned by this primer because it felt thicker than any other primer I have used recently. But if you're looking for a sunscreen (I forgot to mention  that it has an SPF of 40 PA++) and primer in one, this is a great multipurpose purchase.

And oh yes, my foundation stayed moderately strong despite all the oil that was 'sloshing' around during the day.

TGIF! I hope you have a good weekend!

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