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Day Out At VivoCity: Singapore's Mega Mall Just Got Bigger & Better!

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Some malls open with a bang and then remain the same for the rest of their existence. Not VivoCity!

VivoCity opened in 2006 with fireworks display, concerts by String Theory and Stefanie Sun, and CISCO police had to be deployed to maintain order. Year after year, VicoCity has been known to be THE venue for countdowns and big events. I was there at the 2012 countdown! Dance Delight Volume 5 – 2014 was held at the amphitheatre too. Oh! I was also part of a flash mob and we performed at the wading pool on a rainy day. LOL. So many memories! 😀

It’s this continued effort put into organizing events and generating new ideas that sets the mall apart from the rest. No matter how many times I’ve been to VivoCity over the years – from when I was studing at NUS until years later now – the mall is constantly keeping itself in trend and relevant to shoppers. If you take the MRT up to the mall like I do, you might have spotted some new shops at Basement 1.

I was given a little tour around the new retail space at Basement 1, which houses nine retailers – AMERICAN EAGLE OUTFITTERS (coming soon), AÉROPOSTALE (coming soon), RABEANCO, STEVE MADDEN and THOMAS SABO; beauty brands ETUDE HOUSE, INNISFREE and LAB SERIES; and multi-brand lifestyle retailer WEEKENDS.

RABEANCO

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RABEANCO is an international (with stores in Belgium, China, Malaysia, Netherlands, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Taiwan) luxury bag line established in 2004 out of its founders’ passion for leather craftsmanship. The bags are all made of leather, using the finest quality hides and skins. They were all so supple and soft to the touch!

I was amazed by the assortment of bags with cutting-edge style and functional designs. What I really like about the bags is that you can get these trendy, urban designs made with great quality leather, minus the designer price tag. Here are some of my personal favorites!

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The exterior is made from soft, velvety pony and cow leather … and inside is an explosion of beautiful watercolor flowers. SO PRETTY! *drools*

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This is my favorite bag! Love the unique periwinkle shade and size. It looks a little small but it’s actually quite roomy inside!

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RABEANCO promotion when you present a screenshot of my blog post:

  • 20% discount on all regular-priced items
  • Offer if valid till 30 June 2015

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Why I Never Liked Applying Sunscreen Before Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel

Brought to you by Biore Biore-UV-Aqua-Rich-Watery-Gel-Sunscreen-Review_11.1

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Hello, I’m a beauty blogger, and I have plenty of bad beauty habits. HAHAHA.

I never used to apply sunscreen AT ALL, but having started blogging and being exposed to the detrimental effects of not protecting my skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays, I always make sure that my beauty products contain some UV blocking functions. Sunscreen has become a necessity.

However, I still have a lot more bad habits to kick, and here they are. Share with me some of your bad beauty habits too! Heehee!

Bad Habit #1

Because everyone says applying sunscreen is important, and the face gets the hit the most with pigmentation and wrinkles, I apply sunscreen only on the face. That’s a very bad habit because the sun doesn’t choose to shine only on my face! But I always forget. =P

Bad Habit #2

If I’m going to the beach or planning to hang out all day in the sun, I put sunscreen on my body. I am aware that I should be slathering it at frequent intervals, but I don’t like the feeling of having sunscreen on my body because of the oily and sticky and chalky feel! I put my sunscreen on at the beginning of the day… and (purposely) forget about it after that.

Bad Habit #3

When I do remember to apply sunscreen on my body, I apply too little. Wearing sunscreen means spending the day smelling weird and feeling gross! I hope to smell less like an oil spill by applying less, which defeats the whole objective of having constant sun protection.

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Prior to this photoshoot, I had already tried the Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel for a week. Lemme tell ya, I am such a BIG FAN of its light and watery texture! 😀

One of the biggest reasons I never liked to apply sunscreen on my body was because those I had tried before always left an uncomfortably chalky finish on my body. When I scratched my skin, the sunscreen would go into my nails and make them chalky too. Eeeeeeee!!!!

Due to its watery texture, the Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel applies well and gets absorbed very quickly into my skin. No need to massage round and round in circles to make my skin look less ghostly either.

The higher the SPF value, the thicker in texture a sunscreen usually is. However the Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Gel with SPF50+ PA++++ retains its lightweight feel while providing maximum sun protection. It uses the same Aqua Rich technology found in the popular Biore Aqua Rich Watery Essence which is loved by many for its cool and refreshing feel.

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With this sunscreen being so light and refreshing, I no longer hesitate to reapply! Reapplication of sunscreen is just as important as putting it on in the first place, so reapply the same amount every two hours. Also, remember that sunscreens should be applied 30 minutes before sun exposure to allow the ingredients to fully bind to the skin.

♡  Watery texture

♡  Lightweight

♡  Non-greasy / chalky / sticky (I have an experiment at the end of this post!) 

YAY! I think Bad Habit #2 can be easily eradicated!

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RARRRR!!! SO MANY MOSQUITOES!

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15 Liquid Eyeliners Tried & Tested

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This post has been sitting in dust for MONTHS. Lol. I photographed them in a day, but took forever to edit the photos, another forever to finally place this on my priority list, and another 5 minutes to decide, okie this should be #1 on that priority list.

There are thousands of articles out there that do comparisons on the different forms of eyeliners – pencil, gel, liquid. I’m going to do one solely focused on liquid eyeliners and the different types of tips found on them.

My first eyeliner was a pencil. Everyone started with a pencil, right? :) It’s the most accessible form, sold in all cosmetics stores because they can be stored for a long time; most people think it’s the easiest to apply; and liquid/gel/cake liners sound too advanced for newbies. At least to me they did.

I went from pencil >> liquid >> gel >> liquid. I think I will stay a fan of liquid eyeliners for a long time. In this post, I’m going to do a comparison of 15 liquid eyeliners from various brands, categorized into 3 different types of tips.

What I look for in an eyeliner:

  1. Ease of use
  2. Lasting power
  3. Opacity

1. Liquid Eyeliner – Felt Tip (Dip)

My first liquid eyeliner was the felt tip kind, those you have to dip in and out of the little bottle to reload the tip.

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Lancome Artliner 24H | Black — A long time ago, I reviewed my first Lancome Artliner, which I didn’t like. This improved version’s felt tip is sharper and therefore more precise, but still, it’s not quite what I want in an eyeliner. It makes my lashes stick together and harden them and makes mascara application a nightmare. I do like its opacity and elegant glossy look, but the mascara application hurdle is a turn-off.

1028 Visual Therapy Infinity Aqua Eyeliner — One of the not-quite-good-but-not-horrid kind of products. It’s just… so-so. It has a softer felt tip as compared to the Lancome Artliner, is less glossy and less opaque.

Make Up For Ever Aqua Liner | 14   MUFE has a black version but I bought this one with a sprinkling of glitter for fun, so I guess it’s not a true comparison. It doesn’t make my lashes stick together, but the pigmentation is a letdown, way too diluted – not enough black, not enough glitter.

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2. Liquid Eyeliner – Felt Tip (Marker)

Another kind of tip typical of liquid eyeliners is the marker-like, foam tip applicator. It is used like a marker and can be dual-sided but is more commonly single-sided. This is the type of liquid eyeliner I would recommend to beginners because the rigid tip provides great control and is more forgiving towards mistakes.

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The common problem of felt tip eyeliners is that when they start to dry out, the tip will become less sharp, distort, and even fray out. That usually happens way sooner than should be legally allowed. HAHA.

Eyeko Eye Do Liquid Eyeliner | Carbon Black — Highly raved by countless makeup artists and beauty bloggers. At one time, it was so sought after that I could not find any to purhase; it was OOS at all the Sephoras in Singapore! I was ecstatic when Sephora sent me this. Finally I was able to put to test its claims of being waterproof, smudgeproof, lash-enhancing, and super easy to apply. I’ve even seen Lisa Eldridge use it as mascara in her one of her videos. Well, my verdict is that it is pretty good, but not that fantastic. Perhaps overly high expectations killed it. Opacity is fine, but not up to mark in terms of smudgeproof and waterproof abilities.

Elianto Eyeliner Pen | Twilight Black — This was one of my favorites for quite a while! Reached for it everyday because it was long-lasting and quick-drying, and provided precision in drawing lines. I bought this in City Square, Johor Bahru. Elianto is not available in Singapore.

Maxigrade Eyeliner | SP: Another one of my go-to for a while. It seamlessly glides on and fills in spaces, without smudging or pulling. It also deposits just the right amount of color on the lids, guaranteeing an even line in just one stroke. I would have preferred it to be blacker though.

NYX Two Timer | Jet Black — This is a dual-sided eyeliner with a soft kajal eyeliner on one end and a liquid liner on the other. The kajal aids the transition from a day to night look with a smokier black eyeline. The kohl liner makes tightlining easy, as do all pencils, but it smudged on me, as do most pencils. The liquid liner is… ok, I guess. The pen is a little too long, hindering ease of use.

MAC Penultimate Eye Liner | Rapidblack — Provides smooth and controlled application every time and also dispenses constant color. Very easy to draw, but not up to mark in terms of opacity. The ends of my eyeline usually fades by late afternoon.

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Silhouette Soft® – Knock Years Off Your Face During Lunchtime At The Sloane Clinic

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The above aged photo foretells how I may look like when I’m 65. I think I might turn out to be quite a a cute little old lady! LOL!

Of course, I must keep in mind that this portraiture is inaccurate and areas besides my skin will age too. I’m sure my hair wouldn’t be as thick and shiny, the hands on my hands more wrinkled, the twinkle in my eye diminished.

Nah, here’s the ang moh version. Lol.

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Do You Look As Young As You Feel?

“You’re as young as you feel” – that’s what people who wholeheartedly embrace aging say to encourage those who are more concerned about whether they appear old.

Once such person would be Julie Andrews, my favorite actor and singer growing up.

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Mary Poppins and Sound of Music were and are still my favorite musicals. ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’, ‘Chim-Chim Cher-ee’, and ‘A Spoonful of Sugar’ from Mary Poppins; and ‘The Hills are Alive’, ‘Do-Re-Mi’, and ‘The Lonely Goat Herd’ are my favorite songs. My friends and I watched the musical version of the Sound of Music at MBS last year and I realized that these songs will never be the same without Julie Andrew’s pure and crystal clear voice.

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The signs of aging are apparent but she takes it all in her stride and I think that’s beautiful too. :)

For us mere mortals though, personally I think it’s hard to feel young and upbeat when the reflection staring back at you shows wrinkles, jowls, saggy skin that wobbles when you nod or shake your head… all these, visible markers of being old rendered by time and gravity.

‘青春就是美’ – Youth and beauty are synonymous. That’s why seeing an aesthetician is as common as seeing a GP nowadays.

We all age, yes. Intellectually we appreciate the wisdom amassed over decades, but how about looking as BEST as possible at that age at the same time?

Question: Which Compliment Do You Prefer?

A: ‘You look fantastic for your age! I couldn’t tell!’

B: ‘You look wise, the wrinkles on your face tell stories’

If you chose A, read on.

If you chose B, read on too coz you will choose A at the end of this post. BAHAHA.

I’d be happy if I really looked like that in 2049, but for now, let’s retard the aging the process a little bit, shall we?

Traditional Facelift

Since the beginning of time, women have always been concerned about their appearance. To put it flatly, our sense of appearance is associated with our functional status.

Unless you belong to the small breed of people who bask in perfect isolation (in which you not be reading my blog anyway), we all want to feel wanted, validated, invited, welcomed, and looked upon.

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Therefore, despite the surgical risks involved, women opted for facelifts that required making a cut in the hairline, down past the front of the ears and then up into the hairline again behind the ears.

The skin is carefully separated from the underlying tissues, followed by removal of the excess fat, or tightening the muscles or surrounding tissues in your face. The final step is to lift your skin, pull it back and trim off any excess skin, which is then stitched back to the line where the cut was made.

Afterwards, the face is wrapped in bandages.

I don’t know about you, but all that sounds extremely PAINFUL and DANGEROUS and TROUBLESOME! All for a little lift of the face. I would NOT risk my life like that.

We should feel fortunate that while aging is inevitable, technology is always advancing and there are more procedures now than ever which are less invasive, takes less time, with less downtime, and provides better results!

What Is Silhouette Soft®?

At the workshop conducted by The Sloane Clinic at Grand Hyatt, Dr Chua Han Boon shared with us about Silhouette Soft®, a thread facelift that is a safer and more convenient alternative to the traditional facelift surgery.

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Meiting, Evonne and I probably don’t need it this year, but probably a few more years down the road…. YES, PLEASE! Haha.

Silhouette Soft® was designed to be minimally invasive to achieve effective results like reduction of sagging around the cheeks, jawline, eyebrows, cheekbones, and neck more quickly and with less risk than the conventional approach.

No tearing or sewing or cutting of skin. No need for general anesthesia.

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My Acne Treatment Journey With The Clifford Clinic – Part 1

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I have skin issues.

You probably scoffed at that sentence.

You wouldn’t think I do from the picture above, would you? A combination of a good angle, lighting, a good camera, and of course, makeup went into the production of the photo. Not theatre-thick makeup, but thick enough to cover up certain blemishes I am uncomfortable to go about my daily life unconcealed.

No Photoshop magic was cast on the picture; I uploaded it ‘as is’, with the exception of text inputs.

If I could choose, I’d rather not pile it on. I’d like to one of the countless irritating (because I’m jealous) people in the world who can leave the house without makeup, or get ready in 5 minutes because their skin is flawless or at least less flawed than mine. In short, the lucky people who are blessed with good skin, or manageable skin, at least.

We all react to different insults differently. I feel absolutely fine when people call me a shortie, tell me I suck at Math, or laugh at my flabby arms. What hits my raw nerve is questions or comments of any kind related to my blemished skin and acne condition.

The stupidest question I’ve ever been asked was “Why do you have so many pimples?”. It’s like asking why a dog barks, why the sky is blue, why a woman has ovaries. -.-“ I shared on my Dayre some insensitive comments about my acne a guy at work said to me which made me really sad, and I’m thankful I had the support of you all.

And then I had another person ask “Why are you so anal about your pimples?” Well, how about ‘because I’ve struggled with them the WHOLE of my adult life and I HATE them’??

These questions might seem harmless to a person who does not experience the kind of mental and emotional pain associated with adult acne, but to the sufferer, every acne-related question takes the form of a dagger being pierced through the ribcage and extracting an internal organ.

I never wished for acne. :'( 

I know there are ways to deflect insults, like ignoring or using insults to build a kind of immunity against criticism, blah blah whatever. I could if I wanted to, but how about dealing with the REAL issue first?

Instead of wishing people would stop mentioning my acne, and before giving up hope and trying to attain nirvana, I want to tackle the problem.

I want to get rid of my acne!

My Skin Diary

I have always had acne-prone skin, but nothing too serious. It became worse after the life-changing facial. The severity of my acne fluctuates, I’ve never had flawless skin, not even near flawless. There will always be countless pimples, bumps, and old scars.

Then Clifford Clinic came along and you will see from my journey how my acne is now under better control! ^_^

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In this post I share my story on my many skin problems – new acne, old acne scars, clogged pores, dull skin, uneven skin tone, and how Clifford Clinic has helped alleviate these.

I will write this post like a diary, a daily journal documenting what I truly felt on that day. I made sure to write little notes in my phone for every day I took a picture, which was almost every day. Here are some I selected to tell my story.

Day 6  /  25 Jan

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Argh! Look at those ugly spots and bumps! :( I’ve also been having neck acne for a few months now and they itch! How weird, coz I’ve never had neck acne in my life.

Had my first session of Q Switch at Clifford Clinic 6 days ago. Q-switching is a technique by which a laser can be made to produce a pulsed output beam.

According to Dr Gerard, Q Switch is a laser treatment using laser light to kill bacteria and destroys sebaceous glands. The superficial carbon peeling controls acne inflammation, reduces sebum production, unplugs pores and minimizes pore size. It can also improve some acne scars, uneven pigmentation, reduce red spots after inflammatory acne and poor skin texture.

Sounds promising!

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I hate how all these bumps show up even under makeup. Foundation and color correctors do just that – correct colors – but bumps are 3D and are impossible to conceal.

Day 10  /  29 Jan

Had my second Q-switch session yesterday and I must comment that the angry red bumps have lessened. Still very spotty, but they’re not so dimensional now.

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According to my doctor, this drying up and peeling of the skin is a good sign of skin renewal.

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There are much less pimples on the right now, blemishes like brown spots and freckles are what we have to tackle.

 

Day 12  /  31 Jan

Oooooh, look! Many more areas are drying up as a result of oral medication and acne-appropriate skincare from Clifford Clinic.

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No one except myself knows that underneath the layer of foundation, my skin actually feels like dried cement. LOL. However, apart from the texture, the skin looks much smoother under makeup now. While we’re on the topic of foundation, because excess sebum secretion is under better control, I can actually wear foundation that does not have that much oil control. Chanel Perfection Lumiere which I previously didn’t like because it made me look like an oil sleek is now one of my favorite foundations.

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Check out my before and after makeup pictures.

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All pictures taken for this post were posted ‘as is’, zero editing except for adding of dates and watermark. Of course, good lighting and a good camera help.

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Makeup is awesome, but it can only do so much. Beauty starts with beautiful skin and I’m on my way to achieving that! :)

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