TAG: The Beauty Blogger

Hey guys! Hope your day is going well 🙂

I was tagged by some bloggers (didn’t keep track of the names but thank you, whoever you are!) to do a variation of tags a few months ago. Tags are a series of questionnaires about your personal life and you’re supposed to repost the questions on your social media account with your answers if you’re tagged to do it. It’s like responding to survey quizzes with Facebook Notes which apparently was the craze a few years back. Now, it’s back to haunt me on WordPress. Hahaha, kidding.

Well, throughout my 5 years on WordPress, I have been documenting my life in the form of product and service reviews. Very seldom would you see me writing extensively about myself here because I’m usually quite uncomfortable with the idea of baring my soul to the world and documenting my every move online (the internet is such a scary place).

But I actually thought that tags would be a fantastic way to unveil bits and pieces of my life without sounding too.. self-obsessed? And it’s about time I take a break from reviews and inject some personal touches to this space of mine. 😉

For this post, I have picked a beauty tag which I’m always very excited to talk about (and ‘coz beauty inevitably forms part of the backbone of this blog). So here goes!

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Lipsticks are my obsession

1. Is your hair naturally curly or straight?

Naturally straight. It used to be very straight before I chopped off my hair when I was 15 and people would think that I rebonded it when I didn’t 🙂 Now it’s more wavy than straight because I bun up my hair a lot.

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Shampoo and conditioner I use!

2. Do you dye it yourself or go to a salon?

I get it done at a salon because I can’t dye for nuts.. and my hands won’t be able to reach some parts of my hair.

3. Do you wear the same style everyday, or do you change it?

I’m all about convenience when it comes to dressing up and it has always been the case since I started buying my own clothes. Is that considered as a style? But I love anything pink, floral and girly.

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Floral dresses, my ultimate luv

4. Do you do your own mani/pedi or go to a salon?

I… don’t do any mani or pedi.

*gasps*

Yes. I think it’s a complete waste of money and they won’t last more than a day on me anyway!

5. How often do you change your nail polish?

As above, no nail polish unless I’m in a destructive mood to scratch off paint from my nails.

6. Do you polish your toes in the winter or just the summer?

Never!

7. How long does it take for you to put on makeup?

It depends on how much time I have for makeup. Typically 10-15 minutes during morning rush hour (lighter makeup and sans highlighter and mascara) and 20-30 minutes on days I can afford to waste 😉

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What I use on a daily basis!

8. What do you do first? Face or eyes?

Used to be my face until I realised that it’s way faster to do my eyes first! Plus, the foundation that comes after helps to cover up all the annoying fallout!

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Collectibles 🙂

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Highlighters

9. Do you collect makeup or just buy what you need when you need it?

I unabashedly admit that I collect makeup so I have tons of unused products at home. Eye palettes and lipsticks are just too irresistible.

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My almost-complete collection of Urban Decay Revolution lipstick

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Some of my unused collection

10. How often do you wear false eyelashes?

I don’t wear them because eyelashes make a huge difference to one’s look (and I dislike the feeling of them weighing down my lids). I like my makeup to stay as natural as possible and I don’t wish to appear unrecognisable without my lashes 😉

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I rely on mascaras to enhance the look of my natural lashes. I alternate between Benefit and Urban Decay, sometimes using both (waterproof on upper lashes and non-waterproof on lower to prevent clumping). Also not forgetting my trusty Shiseido eyelash curler. I also own a Shu Uemura curler which works as great!

11. Do you do a full face of makeup everyday?

Yes, as long as I have the time for it. And especially if I am experiencing breakouts.

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Full makeup

12. Do you wear makeup when you’re home alone or with family?

Nope, I’m perfectly fine with my family and boyfriend seeing my no-makeup face. I’m not that self-conscious!

13. Will you leave the house without makeup?

Yes, definitely. I’ve done that a couple of times on days when my skin looks flawless HAHA. And also I don’t mind leaving the house without makeup if I’m commuting by car. But it’s a huge no-no if I’m heading to farther places from home like town by public transport.

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Face products I use to pamper my skin!

14. How many high-end products do you have?

I’m not a high maintenance person so I don’t seek brands like Gucci, Prada or LV. I think my most expensive accessories to date are my Coach wristlets (gifted to me by my cousin and boyfriend), Kate Spade bag and wallet (bought by my boyfriend when he was in US a few years back). My other high-end products are perhaps my more expensive cosmetics from Chanel, Dior and Guerlain.

15. Do you plan your OOTD every night or decide when you’re getting dressed?

I have to plan my OOTD the night before. Otherwise, I would be late for whatever I’m rushing off to.

16. How often do you change your handbag?

Rarely. I own tons of handbags but there’s only a handful (no pun intended) that I use regularly because of the size. I need a medium to large handbag to store my barang-barang hahaha.

17. What time do you wake up and go to sleep?

I’m nocturnal and I know it’s bad for health 😩 I typically sleep after 4am (latest was 7am) and wake up before 11am. That’s less than 5 hours of sleep each day and I’ve grown accustomed to this sleeping pattern. But what to do, I’m just so busy! 24 hours a day is not enough for me.

18. How often or when do you workout?

I try to do short exercises (sit ups, crunches, stretches, planking) every night before I sleep. I run at least 3 times a week if my schedule allows.

19. Left handed or right handed?

Right handed.

20. How tall are you?

165cm the last time I measured. I hope I’ve grown taller after all the stretching exercises 😀

21. Do you speak any foreign languages?

Is Cantonese foreign? I have studied basic French, Spanish and Malay but I doubt I can carry a conversation in those languages. I can understand a little though.

22. How many pets do you have?

One, for now. Planning on getting another dog soon (if the co-owner agrees to be more responsible)

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My lovely Chubs the Pomeranian 🙂

23. How often are you on WordPress?

Daily. WordPress is one of my pinned tabs and it’s also my homepage on my mobile Chrome.

24. Do you read comments posted on blogs?

I don’t really bloghop (too busy for that these days) but I do head straight to the comments after reading a post/news article because I enjoy reading alternative views 🙂

25. Do you keep a list of products to try as you see on other posts?

Not really, I pick up whatever that catches my attention when I go shopping.

Great Singapore Sale is happening right now at ZALORA! Head on to ZALORA now for the best deals and offers 🙂

26. How did you come up with your blog name?

It’s my name, duh! I wanted a name that truly represents me and eventually concluded that it should be my name. So unoriginal but yeah. Hahaha.

27. What kind of camera do you use for your photographs?

NX-2000 for product shoots and NX-mini for outdoors.

28. How often do you clean your house?

I sweep the floor everyday because my dog sheds a lot! I clean and scrub my bathroom perhaps once every two months.

29. What’s your favorite color?

Pink, definitely!

30. Do you swear?

Nope, because I feel that uttering vulgarities depreciates my self-worth. I’m not as liberal as the youth these days. I just can’t bring myself to swear. But admittedly I do swear when I’m extremely pissed off. Hahaha.

31. What are you doing with the rest of your day?

I’m just going to have cupcakes from Five One Degrees and torture myself with a bowl of spicy Korean instant noodles for dinner. 😀

… and that’s all I have for this tag!

I’m supposed to tag a few people to do this questionnaire but I really have nobody in mind. So I’m tagging all of you to do this! Let me know in the comments below if you’ve done it and I’ll hop over to your blog and take a look at your response! Whee, it’s gonna be so much fun!

Thanks for reading lovelies! 🙂

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PAUL @ Westgate

Hey everyone!

It was pouring heavily everywhere in Singapore last Tuesday, leaving boyfriend and I stranded at Jurong East MRT station. We had planned to have dinner at Jcube (since we were going to catch a movie there later) but the rain had obviously thwarted our plan. Fortunately, the station is directly connected to two other malls so we had the option of dining at either of them. But we eventually chose Westgate because it was the nearest to where we stood and most importantly, it’s a CapitaLand mall where we can earn points for vouchers as we shop! 😀

We walked around the first level in search of an inexpensive place to eat and we stumbled upon a bright-lit and snazzy-looking restaurant complete with Parisian-style interior visible through its full glass window panels. The French restaurant has its capitalised name “PAUL” incorporated in the entrance door.

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PAUL Singapore

At first glance, the restaurant looks like some upscale restaurant strangely emplaced in a neighbourhood mall. Right next to it is a bakery of the same name. The entire establishment just looks so posh and Parisian, it totally tickled the Francophile in me ^_^ Curiosity prompted boyfriend to take a closer look at its digital menu boards but all he saw was a poster about their rather affordable lunch special (nothing much, just pastries and bread). There was no menu whatsoever at the entrance. But really, how expensive can a restaurant in the heartlands be, right?

Cashier

Cashier

Paul Singapore

Paul Singapore

In the restaurant, we noticed that less than half of the tables were occupied even though it was dinnertime. We were then given the regular menu and another for their dinner special. We were pleasantly surprised to see the price of the latter:

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WOAH! Exclusive to Westgate outlet only! (They have many other outlets in Singapore as well)

A regular main course alone ranges between S$20-$30++ (perhaps this explains the lack of natural dinner crowd) but you only need to pay a fraction of the price for this Dinner Special! Plus, it comes with brewed coffee or iced green tea. This is such a steal if you ask me! And these are not on the regular menu 🙂

Flipping through the regular menu made us crave for desserts, so on top of the set dinner we also ordered a macaron (wanted Tartelette Citron Meringuee but was told that they didn’t have any Meringuee that day) and Napoleon. We had them before our mains because our growling stomach couldn’t wait any longer.

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Raspberry Macaron and Millefeuille Nature (Napoleon)

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Raspberry Macaron (S$6.90++)

I was initially quite reluctant to order this because I didn’t want to spend S$6.90 on a small dessert like a piece of macaron. But when the macaron came, I instantly understood why it was priced that way. It was huge, probably 3 times the size of a regular macaron. I had strategically place my cup of iced green tea in the background of the first picture to show how big the macaron really is.

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Raspberry Macaron

Ever since CanelĂ© pulled down its shutters permanently last year, I had been going to Antoinette (opened by Chef Pang who spearheaded the creation of desserts at CanelĂ©) to get my macaron fix. But to do that I’d have to travel to the nearest outlet at Orchard. Well, not that it’s very far away from where I live but it’d be even better if I can buy equally good macarons in the west because that’s ultimately where I live, work and study. With PAUL’s macarons, I can safely say that it’s possible now! The macaron I had was just.. divine. It is sweet (some may find it too sweet but I like it the way it is!) and has a really chewy and fluffy centre. It’s not too dry and can be nicely cut in half with minimal crumbling.

Millefeuille Nature

Millefeuille Nature (S$6.80++)

Millefeuille Nature

Millefeuille Nature

The Napoleon is one of PAUL’s signature desserts and it got me hooked at first bite. It’s a crispy golden puff pastry filled with vanilla-flavored pastry cream and topped with a light apricot glaze. It’s simply phenomenal and I really enjoyed the flaky and crusty texture. The pastry is sweet too and very, very addictive. A must-try when you’re at PAUL!

After a rather long wait (would probably feel like eons if not for the desserts to keep our mouth busy), our mains were finally served.

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Poisson GrillĂ© Sauce rose Ă©picĂ©e – grilled white fish wish roasted season veggie, spicy pink sauce and topped with mix salad

Poisson Grillé Sauce rose épicée

Poisson Grillé Sauce rose épicée

Pardon my poor photography – these pictures really don’t do the dish justice. It may seem like a small portion here but in reality it’s many thick slices of cod fish (?) stacked on top of one another. Really value-for-money. I almost couldn’t finish it and had to share some with boyfriend who wished he had ordered this instead of the braised beef. The fish was very tender and fresh, but a tad salty which can be salvaged with the spicy sauce (no, not spicy at all!).

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Boeuf BraisĂ© servi avec une paniĂšre boulangĂšre et une salade – braised beef, potato, carrot, onion, leeks, country bread and mix salad

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Country bread and mix salad

The beef was cut in thick chunks and were relatively soft but in terms of flavour, this pales in comparison with the grilled fish dish. I felt that it was a little bland and the portion was also noticeably smaller so it wasn’t enough to satisfy boyfriend’s hunger. Hahaha. The bread was top-notch though!

Our total damage was $50.96 including all prevailing charges. It would be waaaay cheaper if we just ordered the set meal alone (less than S$35) but even so I thought I was paying less for high quality food 🙂 It’s an offer not to be missed! Unfortunately this deal is only good until 31 May. Hopefully the restaurant comes up with a new Dinner Special menu next month!

And that’s about it for PAUL. Do stay tuned for more food updates 🙂

Thanks for reading!

PAUL Singapore (Westgate)
3 Gateway Drive
#01-05
Singapore 608532
Tel (Bakery Shop): +65 6369 9082
Tel (Restaurant): +65 6369 9080
Operating hours: Mon – Sun: 10am – 9:30pm
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Achieve Your Ideal Body Shape with EnzSerum

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Hey everyone!

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I am now about 5 months into my low-carb diet and so far I’ve managed to maintain my physique despite gorging on food lately (no thanks to all the SG50 dining deals around). Of course, that’s only possible with the help of fat burning/weight-loss products because I’m just too busy for intensive workout as for now.

If you recall, it all started with a strict low-carb diet whereby I would totally abstain from refined carbohydrates like white rice, noodles and bread. Foreseeing that I wouldn’t have time for any workout due to my internship, I initially planned to stick to this diet until the end of my stint in June but sadly, it only lasted for two months because the radical changes I made to my eating habits visibly affected my immune system negatively. I found myself more susceptible to illnesses, falling sick really easily and my period also became really irregular. So I started ingesting little amount of carbs – usually bread – mainly to get my menstrual cycle back on track. But I gradually became more and more liberal in my diet (doesn’t help that lunches with colleagues are always at amazing cafĂ©s) and had put some weight back on. It may seem like a measly 2kg increase on the weighing scale but the fats around my waist had in fact thickened twofold (like literally 2 foldable layers of flab, haiz).

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Belly pre-EnzSerum: flabz not fabz, can’t even see the vertical line on my stomach anymore đŸ˜„

My body insecurities

Well, granted, I’m not exactly fat (the last time I measured I was a UK10 which is considered a “small” in some countries *chuckles*) but I’m definitely borderline chubby by Singaporean standards (or Asian in general) with lots of stubborn excess fats on various parts of my body – more specifically my arms and tummy. Despite being a rather active jogger since 3 years ago, I had only managed to squeeze into a UK8 dress at the minimum at one point (also caused by poor appetite during my busy days which made me lose a few inches of belly fats). Still, unsightly flabs would still be hanging from my underarms no matter how much exercise I do. I used to shy away from sleeveless tops because of this reason. I would feel so self-conscious in them and too ashamed to wave goodbye or hold on to the handgrips on the train. Although I’ve outgrown this insecurity a little, I still wish for toned arms to look good in pictures.

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Arms Pre-EnzSerum: fatfatfatfatfatfatfat

While running does play a great part in weight management, it is after all a whole body activity and it doesn’t really tone up or burn fats at targeted areas apart from my thighs and calves. Moreover, my ongoing internship makes it impossible for me engage in long vigorous exercise because I’d be too burnt out for anything else by the time I get home. I could only spare about 20 minutes each day for a quick workout (consists of 60 sit ups, 4 sets of 50 crunches, abdominal exercises like plank and etc.) which to be honest hadn’t shown much noticeable results on my concerned areas if not for a fat burning product.

Introducing EnzSerum

So what is this fat burning product that I mentioned? Thanks to JBeauty, I was given the opportunity to try out EnzSerum, a fat blasting serum essence, which can be used in conjunction with my workouts to help slim and tone the body by reducing unwanted fat. What’s amazing about this product is that it allows localised fat loss (burning the fats of a targeted area) which is exactly what I was hoping for.

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Formulated in France, the main ingredient of the product is Hydrogenated Phosphatidylcholine and it is derived from soy lecithin, a natural ingredient which is absolutely safe to use since it is obtained during the process of soy beans. It is capable of destroying the fat cell membrane and removing the triglyceride to kill fat cells. For those who don’t know what triglyceride is, it’s the end product of digesting and breaking down fats in meals (e.g. carbs) and essentially the main form of fat in the body. It’s not entirely a bad thing because everyone needs some fats to stay alive. But it’s definitely not good if your triglyceride level is sky-high because that may lead to heart disease and could multiply the bad effects of high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes. [source] It’s like having high cholesterol level, y’know?

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But having said that, this product is not a health or dietary supplement of some sort for lowering triglyceride levels. It’s used purely to combat stubborn fats in your body and can also be a weight-loss supplement for your diet and fitness goals.

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Thighs pre-EnzSerum: not too bad but can be leaner hehehe

What’s more, this product is strictly for external use only so nothing of it is to be taken orally (yay for the sceptics). All you need to do is to apply the product evenly on the surface of your targeted flabby areas and massage until the serum is fully absorbed by the skin. The product utilises the latest Nanotechnology to break down its active ingredients so that it could penetrate the skin cells easily. For better results (I think so la, haven’t tried it yet though!), it can also be used with body wrap for approximately 45 to 60 minutes.

My results

I have personally trialed EnzSerum for 2 weeks and already I can feel the effects of the product. My skin (especially tummy) now feels tightened and less flabby. I use this prior to my workout at night (daily before bedtime) and after my morning shower on my underarms, tummy and thighs.

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Arms

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Tummy

No change in thighs.

But to be honest, 2 weeks is too short a duration for me to realise its full advantages. I believe I would be able to see better results with prolonged use (especially with body wrap). Personally I think it will work way better with exercise (as always!)

Every application leaves a tingling sensation on the skin (something like that of Prickly Heat Snake Powder hahaha) that can last for up to 3 hours so as much as I’m tempted to apply lots of it at one time (not like it’s going to speed up the fat loss process but yeah kiasu is like that), I try not to because I don’t want to feel like I’m being burnt alive. But it provides extra cooling (on exposed areas) on windy days! 😀

Each bottle of EnzSerum should be able to last you for three months (or more if used sparingly hehe).

Why you should get EnzSerum

If you’re troubled by regional fat bulges (belly, waist, shoulder, armpit, hip, upper thighs, back and and unable to reduce fat despite restricted diet and regular exercises like me before, this is the one product you ought to try for a quick, easy and non-invasive way to eliminate unwanted fat.

Besides hastening the breakdown of fats (the primary use of EnzSerum), it also helps to increase your body’s metabolism rate and skin’s elasticity and tighten your body into the highly desirable ‘S’ shape. When used long-term, it reduces cellulite and moisturises your skin. Other benefits include water retention reduction, orange peel skin elimination and skin nourishment.

Here is the list of the ingredients and their functions:

Hydrogenated Phosphatidylcholine – destroy fat cell membrane and remove excess triglyceride (unwanted fat)

Coenzyme A and Vitamin BT (Carntine) – gently eliminate fatty acid and excess fat and reshapes the body

Carnosine – counters the effects of free radicals, provides oxidation, glycation and anti-aging properties

Borage Seed Oil – used to treat eczema and nearly any kind of dermatitis or rash

Gotu Kola Extract – decreases inflammation and blood pressure in veins, increases collagen production

And yup, that’s about it! 🙂

Give EnzSerum a shot if you want a trim body fast and (almost) effortlessly!

 

EnzSerum

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Buckwheat for Better General Health + GIVEAWAY

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Buckwheat Health Products

Two months ago, my mother received a phone call from a close family friend. Thinking that it was just a casual phone call to catch up with a long-time friend, my Mom answered it with one of her chirpiest tones. But soon, the mood grew sombre as Auntie Renee’s* voice turned brittle. Carefully, she relayed the news of her cancer diagnosis and added that she was given a terminal prognosis. As the cancer has spread to various parts of her body, recovery was not likely. The unfortunate news shattered the tiniest hope she had completely at the hospital, and her accompanying husband who had always assumed a hostile and fierce look broke down and wept at the thought of losing his wife.

Auntie Renee, once a smoker, is over 60 years of age.

But she is not the only person I know who has fallen prey to cancer or other deadly health problems.

The past few years have witnessed how my paternal aunt, grandmothers (from both sides), grandpa, other family friends and celebrities I looked up to succumb to cancer, stroke and heart failure (also the top causes of death in Singapore). It’s devastating to see a person once so full of life and happiness suddenly be reduced to skin and bones and lying helplessly on the hospital bed the next moment, awaiting death. Only those who are diligent enough to go for regular check-ups are granted (mostly) a few more years to live. My paternal aunt and maternal grandma lived for another 10 years or so before passing away. Nonetheless, those were 10 torturous years for them as they had to be on medication for the rest of their lives. Also not mentioning the pain and suffering they had to (silently) endure. Both were non-smokers and non-alcoholic drinkers (and perhaps eating healthily) even before the misfortune was meted out to them.

And that’s life.

Very often as we age, we experience health issues with greater frequency as our body become weaker and more prone to illnesses and diseases. It’s very common for people over the age of 40 to be diagnosed as having diabetes [source] which often leads to hypertension (for type 1 diabetes), stroke and a myriad of other heart diseases. As for cancer, it may affect all ages, even foetuses, but the risk for the more common varieties tends to increase with age. [source] are the top causes of death in Singapore. While diabetes and cancer may be attributed to poor lifestyle choices and genetic susceptibility, the cause of the latter is also largely associated to environmental factors (air pollution, UV radiation etc.). Some may even argue that cancer is mostly “bad luck”.

*Names have been changed to protect the family’s privacy (as some people I know are readers of my blog).

Prevention is the best medicine

Instead of leaving your health to fate or your doctors (chronic diseases can chalk up a huge bill), I feel that many people overlook the fact that problems like diabetes, heart attack and cancer can be prevented, or at the very least, forced to slow down in their progression [source]. And this definitely doesn’t cost as much as your medical bill.

My penny-pinching parents for one generally are not willing to spend money on health. My Mom in particular is a worrywart. Yet, she avoids doctor visits like the plague even when she has severe migraine because she’s afraid to hear unpleasant stuff about her health from the doctor (like brain cancer or something), or that other health problems would surface during the check-up. I’ve tried persuading her many times but failed. She prefers to live in ignorance. *sigh*

My Dad fell ill once and was tested positive for high blood pressure (caused by smoking, his love for rice dishes in large portions, and sitting in his taxi for hours). Since then, he has to attend scheduled appointments to see his HBP specialist, much to his displeasure. His doctor monitors his condition very closely and had threatened to put him on life-long medication if the problem worsens. He tried cutting down his rice intake (instead of smoking because he finds it very difficult to quit the habit *sigh*) but the result was short-lived as my Dad would revert to his rice-based diet after the appointment.

But one thing I know for sure about my parents is that they are not choosy eaters. Unlike me, they don’t mind downing a huge pot of the bitterest herbal tea in the name of health (and to avoid seeing the doctor for my Mom), or drinking a cup of prune juice religiously to aid digestion. I can’t do that *oops*.

However, these health foods don’t combat against more serious illnesses per se, and can be quite expensive in the long run.

Introduction to Buckwheat

Upon hearing about my Dad’s health condition, his diabetic friend who also suffers from hypertension recommended him to drink a certain kind of green tea. It’s a well-known universal fact that green tea does reduce the risk of cancer. It even has the ability to prevent cancer cell growth and kill cancer cells with no ill effect on healthy cells [source]. Furthermore, it also helps lower blood pressure naturally [source], hence reducing risk of stroke, heart failure and heart attack. [source] Of course, apart from these facts, green tea has other benefits as well such as it being rich in vitamins A (essential for functioning of the eye), C (enhance absorption of iron from non-meat products) and E (antioxidant).

But what is unfamiliar to many people is buckwheat which is as beneficial to the health as green tea. And despite its name, it is actually a fruit seed and not a cereal grain. The superfood is triangular in shape, usually brown in colour and has more of a soft and subtle flavor. When roasted, it can give an earthy and nutty taste. It can be served as an alternative to rice or made into porridge, making a great substitute for grain for people who are sensitive to wheat or other grains that contain protein glutens. [source]

Buckwheat has been known to lower the risk of developing high cholesterol as well as high blood pressure. It is a good source of magnesium and dietary fibre. Magnesium helps in the absorption and retention of calcium and dietary fibre aids the digestive system. The former also has powerful anti-carcinogenic effects, primarily on the development and metastasis of breast cancer cells in postmenopausal women and colon cancer [source].

Trust me, the above is just an excerpt of what I’ve read about Buckwheat; there are way more benefits than that (you may read it if you’re keen). That’s how powerful Buckwheat is. Now, imagine it combined with green tea. The result is formidable.

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Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea and canned Green Tea

My Dad was introduced to Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea by BHP and within a month, he could see a remarkable improvement to his blood pressure and overall health. From a blood pressure reading of 155/87 (high Systolic BP & normal Diastolic BP a.k.a Isolated Systolic Hypertension) in December 2014, it dipped to a healthier reading of 130+/80+* (both in the normal range but still on the high side – no thanks to his smoking habit and more-than-occasional Roti Prata breakfast -_-) by his following medical appointment in end January 2015. The reading remains in the normal range even today.

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Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea

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Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea

It has impact my Dad’s life so positively that he started getting the rest of the family to drink it (Mom’s happily drinking it everyday *phew* at least I know her health is partially taken care of!). One isn’t enough for a tea lover like me so I tend to help myself to more than one sachet a day. It kinda reminds me of my favourite free-flow hot green tea at Itacho Sushi Restaurant which I had been searching high and low for and this taste is perhaps the closest I’ve found so far! But in comparison, this is definitely more fragrant and flavourful (because of the buckwheat).

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*slurps*

*Estimate reading recalled from memory.
For categories of Blood Pressure, click here.

Not a tea drinker? No problem!

On top of the Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea that I have been raving about, there is also Buckwheat Black Coffee for those who absolutely abhor the bitterness of tea (I personally find it acceptable but that’s probably because I’m a tea lover to begin with). and those who cannot live without coffee. It is a blend of Arabica & Robusta coffee mixture and it is so aromatic, you wouldn’t know it’s combined with buckwheat until you’ve tried it.

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Buckwheat Black Coffee

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Zero-sugar coffee for the health nut. Also a great start to a healthier lifestyle!

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Have no qualms about the taste because it tastes exactly like coffee! A healthier version of coffee to be exact 😉

Enjoy a good cup of hot coffee every morning while benefiting from its health advantages! Isn’t it awesome? 🙂

At BHP, there’s something for everyone – even kids! If you’re worried that your little ones may not like the taste of the hot Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea, it also comes in canned form with a sprinkle of sweetness. You may also refrigerate it for an extra burst of freshness and drink it on the go if you’ve no time for boiling water! 🙂

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Canned Buckwheat Green Tea

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Canned Buckwheat Green Tea

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Awarded HPB’s Healthier Choice symbol!

Why you should drink buckwheat?

I’ve pretty much explained myself above but to sum things up…

Main health benefits (tl;dr version)

1. Reduces the 3 ‘high’s – reduces blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol. It is ideal for people with high blood sugar.

2. High in antioxidants – the amount in buckwheat is equal or even higher than that of fruits and vegetables

3. Reduces the risk of cancer – especially breast and colon

And also helps in…

4. Slimming and skin whitening – reduce body fat and inhibits the growth of melanin (dark pigments)

5. Improving gastrointestinal conditions – helps in detoxification and eases constipation

This would make a great Father’s Day present as well, don’t you think? 🙂

UPDATE: 

The Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea has won the Healthier Choice Merit award at the Food Product Awards organised by the Singapore Institute of Food Science and Technology! To celebrate this huge milestone, BHP has kindly sponsored some full-sized boxes of Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea to be given away to 12 lucky readers. Scroll all the way down for more details!

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Where to buy?

The Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea (25 sachets at S$20, 60 sachets at S$36), Buckwheat Black Coffee (30 sachets at S$22) and canned Buckwheat Green Tea (24 cans at S$22) can be bought directly off buckwheat.com.sg, from authorised Qoo10 users and authorised distributors. The official website provides worldwide shipping, free local delivery with no minimal order.

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Sachets

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Get FREE samples!

Want to try out the Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea and Buckwheat Black Coffee before purchasing? Simply e-mail me (askme@fionaseah.com) or comment here with your e-mail address* and you will be given a set of Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea and Roasted Black Coffee samples (no canned drink, sorry!) by normal post.  Hurry, limited stocks available and first come, first served only 🙂

UPDATE (5 July 2015)

All samples have been given out!

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Giveaway (while stocks last) is open to all residents of Singapore.

*limited to one entry per e-mail address

*WIN* a box of Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea

If you’ve tried the samples and are itching to get the full-size product, you would be glad to know that BHP has kindly sponsored me some boxes to be given away to 12 lucky readers! This giveaway is held in celebration of the company’s achievement in the recent Food Products Awards organised by the Singapore Institute of Food Science and Technology. Big congratulations to BHP for clinching the Healthier Choice Merit award for the Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea! 🙂

To win, simply comment “I want Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea!” with your e-mail address below or e-mail me at askme@fionaseah.com with “I want Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea!” as your subject. I will pick 12 winners by 12 July 2015 (may end earlier if response is overwhelming!)

As product is bulky, self-collection is advised at the following MRT stations: Choa Chu Kang, Bukit Gombak, Bukit Batok, Jurong East, Serangoon, Orchard and Dhoby Ghaut. All are welcome to participate in this giveaway as long as you’re able to meet me at any of the above-mentioned locations! 🙂

UPDATE: First round of giveaway has ended! All winners have been notified 🙂 Thanks for your participation!

Second round of giveaway (even bigger and better!) is open now! Click here to find out more!

Many people have tried the product and witnessed favourable results. What about you? 🙂

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I love my Roasted Buckwheat Green Tea! 🙂

Thanks for reading! 🙂

Buckwheat Healthcare Products P/L

FREE LOCAL DELIVERY
www.buckwheat.com.sg

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Follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for more bite-sized updates! 🙂

REVIEW: MAC Huggable Lipcolour – Soft Talkin’, Play It Soft, I’m Game, Dramatical, Flaming Lips & Bare Hug

“What time is it? Summertime! It’s our vacation!”

Are you guys old enough to know where I got the above quote from? *nostalgia mode* The last movie aired more than 6 years ago! Isn’t it amazing how time flies by? Just like how it was only a few weeks ago that I reviewed on the last MAC collection for Spring. In the blink of an eye, summer is upon us! And so are some of the new MAC releases for this season 🙂 Let’s talk about the first one!

First unveiled in Winter 2013, the MAC Huggable Lipcolour collection featured a range of limited-edition creamy lipsticks formulated to provide a lasting, glossy finish that would leave lips smooth and sculpted. This amazing formula was inspired by Asian trends and could last for up to 6 hours.

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MAC Huggable Lipcolour 2015

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The Huggable Bear!

This May, more than one year since the collection first flew off the shelf, it’s back by popular demand for a limited time only! With 12 huggable hues to choose from, these lipsticks promise a rich and glossy shine that boosts collagen, and a unique gel base that melts upon contact, allowing each shade to glide on effortlessly with a feather-light moisturizing finish. [source]

The 12 colours available from this collection are Soft Talkin’, I’m In, Bare Hug, Play It Soft, I’m Game, Fashion Force, Dramatical, Flaming Lips, Glamorized and Love Feeling.

There was a preview for this endearing collection at Sephora ION outlet last Friday (slated to be launched on 15 May 2015) and being on the Singapore MAC mailing list entitled me a pass to the event. Technically since it’s not a closed-door event, anyone could enter. But then registered attendees were served glasses of fruit punch and champagne 😀 The event was joined by the huggable bear above (so cute!) which was so popular with the ladies, I didn’t have a chance to take a selfie with it. 😩

Bare Hug wasn’t available for sale and preview at the event which explains why I had to buy it off the US site. Having said that, all 12 shades will definitely be available on its official launch day.

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Overview

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Official swatch

The nude hues on the top row are simply gorgeous! In fact I kinda like all the shades in this collection. But I don’t have the deepest of pockets so I gotta narrow my choices down to 5 or 6 😩

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These are my choices! With another one (Bare Hug) on its way from the States! (UPDATE: Bare Hug review added towards the end of this post!)

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My swatch (Bare Hug is not in this picture because I didn’t have the product at the time of first publication)

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Packaging

At US$20, I expected some differentiation to the box. Perhaps some not-so-conspicuous images of teddy bear (since the theme for this collection revolves around huggable bear) printed on the box would be lovely 😀 Of course, the hike in the price this time ’round is largely due to the sleek metallic packaging of the lipstick tube (which I feel, to be honest, isn’t sufficient to warrant a US$4 increment).

Soft Talkin’

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Soft Talkin’ is a warm peachy nude. (US$20 / S$35)

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Soft Talkin’

Since I was at the physical MAC store, I had every opportunity to swatch the colours before deciding to pay for them. So I really have no idea what actually got into me that led me to purchase the lightest nude from this collection which obviously doesn’t really show on my lips except to give it some shine. Perhaps I bought it because I was fond of the colour of the bullet. It’s such a sweet warm peachy nude and it’s a shame that it doesn’t appear to be like that on my lips 😩

On the other hand, it really felt emollient and the application left behind what looked like a protective sheen that clings comfortably on my lips. Huggable indeed 🙂

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Swatch comparison against other nude colours. You can tell how emollient it is as compared to Satin and Cremesheen shades like Myth and Shanghai Spice.

Play It Soft

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Play It Soft is a bright coral red. (US$20 / SG$35)

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This colour is mega love. It makes me look like I have really healthy and hydrated lips because of the warm-toned pink that’s not too over the top (it’s not really bright despite the description). But I would recommend this shade for its great consistency 🙂 Plus, don’t you think it appears like it has lip glass applied over it?

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Swatch comparison with some shades I own. 5-Alarm is close, but darker and more opaque.

I’m Game

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I’m Game is a creamy raspberry. (US$20 / SG$35)

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I’m Game

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I’m Game

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I’m Game

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I’m Game

I was contemplating between this and Glamorized because both are what I’d consider to be the attention-grabbing kind of brights. I only picked this because I felt this isn’t as scarily bright as Glamorized. (But to be honest I almost wavered when the emcee of the event commented that it would be the first shade to sell out. That’s enough to make a kiasu (grasping) Singaporean like me to buy it. But thankfully I resisted and walked away!). It actually looks pretty alright on me.

The finish is comparable to Play It Soft, perhaps equally commendable. Similarly, it has awesome coverage and consistency and it also gives me lips a very healthy shine.

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Swatch comparison. Strangely it looks sheer on my hand but more opaque on my lips! It’s usually the other way round haha.

Dramatical

Dramatical

Dramatical is a bright cherry red. (US$20 / SG$35)

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Dramatical

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Dramatical

Oh no, yet another classic red! But this has slightly more blue undertones.

I feel that among all my red lipsticks (excluding my Matte ones of course. Those are irreplaceable), this is the best because of the finish and the colour isn’t too glaring or in-your-face. I do see myself wearing this more often than the others. Light-weighted with such smooth application, it just feels like it’s part of my lips. Plus it deserves some bonus marks for not making my lips flake over time!

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Swatch comparison with other reds!

Flaming Lips

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Flaming Lips is a deep creamy red. (US$20 / SG$35)

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Flaming Lips

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Flaming Lips

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Flaming Lips

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Flaming Lips

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Flaming Lips

In contrast to Dramatical, this has yellow undertones and is sheerer. It doesn’t apply as evenly as the others because some of the product tend to settle heavily in the middle and accentuating the lines, making my lips look cracked at that area (you can tell from the pictures above). Still, it wore very comfortably on me because it feels very hydrating over time.

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Comparing with Dramatical and a Lustre shade (Call the Hairdresser!)

Bare Hug

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Bare Hug is a creamy soft peach/orange. (US$20 / SG$35)

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Bare Hug

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Bare Hug

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Bare Hug

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Bare Hug

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Bare Hug

Adding on to my list of favourite MLBB lipsticks is Bare Hug! The semi-opaque finish allows your natural lip colour to show through and on top of that give life to your pale lips without having to overdo your makeup.

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Swatch comparison!

To sum things up.. Well, it’s confirmed: I’m a new fan of the Huggable formula. I thought I was gonna hate it because nothing good comes out of sheer lipsticks. But I’m awfully wrong this time! 🙂

That’s all for this review! Let me know your thoughts through the poll below:

 

Thanks for reading! ❀

MAC Huggable Lipcolour is now available on MACCosmetics.com and will be on sale from 15 May 2015 at local MAC stores.

PREVIEW: Luxola x Alcina Launch in Singapore

MEDIA INVITE

Hey ladies!

Singapore-based online beauty store Luxola is no stranger to many beauty fanatics here. Since it first started in 2011, it has brought countless popular and niche beauty brands from all over the world to the Singapore e-market. Some examples are Sigma Beauty (I was eyeing on their brushes for the longest time), Real Techniques, Sleek MakeUP, Wet n Wild and 3CE which, as far as I know, are not available in any brick and mortar stores. This, no doubt, saves us shoppers a lot of shipping and agent fees because with Luxola, we don’t really need to purchase products by the aforementioned brands overseas anymore! 🙂 (Hmm.. perhaps they should consider bringing Lorac over as well?)

A few days ago, I received an invitation to attend a beauty cafe (or simply put, a pre-launch event with lotsa awesome food) for Luxola’s latest brand partner Alcina. Alcina is a makeup and skincare brand from Bielefeld, Germany. It was established around mid 20th century (If I’m not wrong it was somewhere in the 1970s) aimed to provide skin care for all ages. Prior to its existence here, this brand was pretty much targeted at some parts of Europe, having garnered a huge following in Germany and Russia especially. The launch here marks Alcina’s first step to going global and Singapore is in fact the very first Asian country chosen to stock the brand. *honoured* The products will go live on luxola.com on 11 May 2015.

(Please allow me to interrupt this post with some mouth-watering pictures of the irresistible hors d’oeuvres I had at Club Street Social where the event was held. Sorry, just couldn’t resist!)

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The fruit carving on the right is madness!

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At the event, we had makeup artist Frouka from Germany demonstrate how she did her makeup with Alcina products and I also had the opportunity to test out and swatch some of them.

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Here’s a sneak peek at some Alcina products that will be debuting on Luxola later, beginning with the products from their skincare range. Descriptions are lifted from Alcina.com.

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The premium cleansing foam of the Alcina Cleansing Mousse NÂș1 stands for ultimate indulgence and with its mild tenside system and moisturising complexes it ensures deep-down, thorough facial cleansing which is nevertheless gentle. The foamy, creamy cleansing mousse also nourishes your facial skin as part of your daily cleansing ritual.

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Cleansing Mousse N°1 – Premium foam for gentle yet thorough cleansing

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Hyaluron Gel 2.0 for a firmer complexion. This helps to fill out small wrinkles by giving the skin moisture for combating fine lines, leaving the skin looking significantly more vital and smooth.

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Nourishing Capsules with natural ceramides, vitamins A and E and jojoba oil help the skin to store oil and moisture more effectively. They strengthen the skin’s barrier for silky smooth skin straightaway. The light, oily concentrate of these energy-rich capsules leaves damaged skin feeling wonderfully smooth without a greasy sheen.

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Nourishing Capsules provide facial care for a silky smooth skin sensation. To use this, simply twist or cut off the neck of the capsule and press out the oil and apply on cleansed facial skin.

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Facial Cream N°1 is a moisturising cream which provides intensive care to dry facial skin, relieves any uncomfortable sense of tautness and restores the skin’s elasticity and fresh look. Thanks to the carefully combined ingredients in Facial Cream N°1, including urea and the essential amino acid arginine, the skin is nourished and provided with long-lasting moisture. For beautiful-looking, pampered and relaxed skin – 24 hours a day.

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Eye Cream N°1 provides optimal protection for the skin against harmful environmental factors and ensures beautifully bright eyes. This eye cream increases the skin’s moisture content and reduces fine lines and small wrinkles around the eyes. If used regularly, Alcina Eye Cream N°1 helps to prevent the formation of wrinkles and skin aging caused by light.

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Eye Cream N°1 has a tip for easy application. Use this to increase the skin’s moisture content.

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The Alcina Eye and Lip Cream boasts a dual function: it makes the skin around the eyes smoother and also ensures beautiful lips. The linoleic acid in this cream moisturises the extremely dry eye and lip areas. The rich cream can reduce new wrinkles around the eyes and gently soothe lip wrinkles, both caused by dryness, and make stressed lips soft and smooth again.

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Lip and Eye Cream

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The Alcina Day & Night Facial Fluid with allantoin, liquorice and bisabolol balances out excess sebum production on the face and stabilises moisture levels. If used regularly the Alcina Day & Night Facial Fluid ensures a matt and balanced complexion.

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The Alcina Herbal Mask helps to clear impure skin. The combination of the active ingredients kaolin, sage and lavender oil ensures that excess sebum is absorbed and that the facial pores are visibly reduced.

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Herbal Mask: The colour does look very “herbal” to me!

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SOS Stick has an antibacterial effect which dries out spots and impurities more quickly. It’s so small and portable, great for combating pimples before you go for an event!

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SOS Stick comes with a roller ball. I’m planning to get this when it goes live later!

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AHA Facial Fluid 10% nourishes and smoothes stressed skin and is particularly ideal for mature skin subject to natural or light-induced skin aging.

Let me just say that most of the skincare products above smell REALLY good. But fret not, these products are fragrance-free and non-toxic so it’s perfectly safe to apply on your skin.

Moving on to their makeup products. Alcina specialises in skincare products but they believe that makeup can be used to enhance and develop one’s own style of beauty. Thus, that propelled them to launch a makeup line as well!

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Alcina Perfect Cover Make-up offers long-lasting coverage to give your skin a flawless look and semi-matt finish. The soft texture gives it an ultralight and comfortable feel when applied. It provides full coverage for pigmented spots, redness, impurities or an uneven complexion to achieve a perfect finish.

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Alcina Perfect Cover Make-up Swatch! These are the 3 chosen shades (there’s also a Dark shade but it’s not available on Luxola) for the Singapore consumers.

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Silky Matt Make-up leaves your skin feeling silky-smooth. The skin’s pores appear smaller and a powdery light, matt finish is achieved all day long thanks to the light and equalising coverage. Also comes in Medium shade (not in picture).

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Cover Coat Concealer hides shadows under the eyes to give a wide-awake and fresh appearance. The pleasant texture makes minor skin imperfections, pores and lines less visible thanks to its seamless coverage which can be increased as necessary.

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Cover Coat Concealer only comes in light and medium shades.

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Cover Coat Concealer swatch

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Matt Sensation Powder is an innovative wet & dry powder which gives your skin a matt and naturally beautiful complexion which lasts all day long. The novel powder technology leaves the skin feeling wonderfully soft and also fixes your make-up perfectly in place. Apply using a moist sponge, can also be used as a powder. Perfect for minor make-up corrections. Only available in Light and Medium.

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Matt Sensation Powder swatch (hope it’s visible on your end!)

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Sun Kiss Powder gives your skin a summer glow. Light-reflecting shimmering pigments make your skin look fresher, smoother and altogether flawless. As if kissed by the sun. In layman’s term, this is a bronzer. Hehe.

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Sun Kiss Powder swatch! Three different shades in one 🙂 How value-for-money.

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The standard packaging for most of the make-up (powder) products.

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Brilliant Blush adds gentle contours to your face and gives you a fresher-looking complexion straightaway. The multi-shade powder impresses thanks to optimal shade brilliance and creates vivid highlights, from delicate through to intensive. Advanced micropigments guarantee a radiant finish. Comes in two shades.

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Brilliant Blush in Triple Rose 010

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Brilliant Blush in Triple Peach 020

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Perfect Eyebrow Powder intensifies the colour of your eyebrows and makes them appear thicker. The quick and easy way to the perfect eyebrow shape for a finish ranging from natural to striking. Great hold and can be simply and professionally applied using the oblique brush. Comes in Lightbrown and Greybrown.

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Perfect Eyebrow Powder swatch

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Wanna make a guess what these are?

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Pretty eye shadow! The bronze (foreground) is so captivating *_*

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Miracle Eye Shadow adds fascinating colour brilliance to your eyelids for a sensational colour result. This smooth and luxurious eye shadow with its innovative texture is particularly rich in colour pigments and guarantees a perfect hold. It can be used both wet and dry for an individual look – from subtle to expressive. It combines the very best of baked, powder and cream eye shadows. Comes in 6 amazing shades!

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Miracle Eye Shadow swatch. Missing Mocca 070 here.

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Wonder Volume Mascara gives your eyelashes maximum volume, a thicker eyelash base and stunning length. The exceptional microbrush coats and shapes every single lash. For seductive and voluminous eyelashes.

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(My favourite part of the event) Luxola launches two types of Alcina lipsticksShiny and Intense. This picture does not (obviously) show the full collection.

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There will be 8 Intense Lipsticks and 7 Shiny Lipsticks. Intense lipsticks leaves an intensely rich and perfectly opaque colour while Shiny gives a seductive shine.

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What were available at the talk! Scarlet is the only Shiny lipstick here.

The lipsticks (both types) don’t really provide full, opaque coverage as you can see from the swatch above.

In general, the products felt amazing and high-end. Most importantly, the prices would be relatively affordable.

I didn’t get to really try most of these products so I can’t do a proper review for each of them (that’d be crazy I know but yes, I love pushing boundaries!). But I got to take home some of the products featured above 🙂 Shall do a quick review on those that I’ve used.

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Shiny Lipstick in Scarlet 010

I love the lipstick! It has a very nice sheen (though I don’t really find it seductive haha) and it feels really emollient! It gives off a nice stain effect and glides on really smoothly on my lips. It’s slightly sheer and not really pigmented so you’d need to apply multiple times for the colour to really show.

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I like how the Sun Kiss Powder has three different shades in it! They blend to form a really nice gradual tan.

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Sun Kiss Powder comes with a brush!

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With Sun Kiss Powder and Shiny Lipstick in Scarlet on

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Lips close-up

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Contoured my face with Sun Kiss Powder. Turns out great!

And that’s all from me! How do you find the products? Do you use Alcina if it’s available in your country? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below 🙂

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Thanks for having me Luxola!

And thanks for reading! 🙂 Stay tuned for more posts coming up!

Alcina will be launched on Luxola.com on 11 May 2015.

Mom’s Birthday @ Crab Party

Hey everyone! Hope your week has been great so far 😉

My Mom celebrated her birthday last week and being the eldest child, I had the responsibility of deciding where to take her on her special day. With so many restaurants to choose from, deciding where to eat can be a real headache. After narrowing down my choices, I finally decided on Crab Party which has been my go-to restaurant to satisfy my crab craving (mega love the Butter Cream Crab there!) ever since I was introduced to it six years ago.

It wasn’t my Mom’s first time at Crab Party, having brought my parents to dine there once in 2012 on Father’s Day. They too loved the food and were full of praise for the crab dishes. But prices are pretty steep and the place can be quite inconvenient if you don’t drive.

It is also noteworthy that the crabs sell out very quickly so it’s important that you ask to reserve your preferred number and size of the crab when you call to book a table.

The following is what we ordered!

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Salted Egg Chicken (S$12+)

We were tossing up between ordering Butter Cream Crab and Salted Egg Crab but I was dying to have the taste of the butter cream I missed to much linger on my tongue once again. So we got the best of both worlds! The chicken came in bite-size pieces (like KFC’s Popcorn Chicken) coated with savoury salted egg seasoning. Every bite was sensational!

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Kailan with Beef (S$15+)

We had some greens to balance out the guilt! The beef was glistening in the restaurant ceiling light, making the entire dish look so appetising and enticing. The beef was great and had a consistent chewy texture. But I enjoyed the greens more because they were really fresh and crunchy!

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Black Sauce Big Prawn (S$25+)

This was ordered by my Mom who is a huge prawn lover. I wasn’t particularly pleased with the size of the prawns because they were nowhere near “big”. Worst of all, the flesh was rather mushy – a sign that the prawns were not fresh. Overall, this dish was a disappointment.

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Mantou (S$1+ each)

Boyfriend and I went sans rice that day to allow more stomach space for the hot and crispy Mantou (steamed buns) which we would dip into the chilli gravy and butter cream sauce below.

Crabs were chargeable at S$65/kg which is pretty much on the high side. To have a peace of mind, we usually ask for our crabs to be weighed before we place our orders. We certainly don’t wish to get a rude shock when we receive our bill at end of the meal.

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Favourite Chilli Crab (medium, 1.6kg, S$104+)

Chilli Crab is the restaurant’s signature dish and of course, my folks’ favourite style of cooking crabs. The gravy was sweet and spicy enough for me but definitely not for my parents whose tolerance for spicy food is sky-high.

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Butter Cream Crab (medium, 1.6kg, S$104+)

We ordered another crab because boyfriend and I aren’t really into chilli. And most importantly, we didn’t want to compete with our elders for the crab pincers *chuckles* Our pincers were all very meaty because both crab were medium-sized, which made our meal even more gratifying.

The Butter Cream gravy was divine as usual. Sweet, thick and smooth, the gravy propels you to heaven with a single taste. It’s one of the best Butter Cream Crab I’ve had and I’m so glad standards remain unchanged throughout the years. I feel that it tastes even better with Mantou 🙂

Okay hope you guys like this short update! I have more posts coming up so please bear with me 😉

Thanks for reading!