Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Bench Fix Styling Gum: Review

The truth is, starting tomorrow, I will be busy. I may not be able to blog as much but I will try to schedule a lot of posts in advance just to keep up with my 'every other day' postings. The thing is, I recently decided to explore other opportunities in my profession (nursing) through Australia. Yes, I've been thinking of practicing in another country. Nothing's carved in stone yet. So I'm not sure if I would really push through with this. There are a lot of things to consider and the first hurdle I have to overcome is IELTS. I have to acquire an IELTS score of NOT lower than 7 in any section of the IELTS exam so I decided to enroll in a review center. So finally, after more than 5 months, I will have something worthwhile to do. I've been a bum for so long. I'm quite excited but the downside would have to be me, missing out on opportunities to blog (since I have to attend classes). I've been pretty happy with my blogging progress the past two months because I have been able to stick to my schedule of writing a post every other day. I only hope that this review phase doesn't take its toll on my blogging.

Anyway, enough about my personal life, I know you are much more interested in my product review so I won't prolong the intro. This isn't going to be a long post because I still actually have a lot to read so I'm just throwing in a simple post for today.

As I've said, I used to work as a nurse. And the big deal about working (before) is keeping my hair in place. In the previous company I worked for, we were required to tie our hair into a bun to keep our hair from our faces. One struggle that I face everyday is keeping it nice and tidy. My hair was previously cut just below the shoulders which is a length that's pretty hard to work with. One, because it's not long enough to be tied up with ease. Two, because it's not short enough for me to be allowed  to not to tie it up. Admin usually doesn't mind us not tying up our hair as long as it is cut above the shoulders. Anyway, since I'm working with a tricky hair length, I need the aid of hair products to keep it in place. Also, I have a lot of 'baby hair' that I need to tame. To do all that, I use Bench Fix Styling Gum.

I used to not know anything about Bench Fix products because most people I know use the clay and I didn't particularly like the texture of their hair clay. Good thing my good friend Jade told me about this product. At first, I was just drawn to the name because I've never heard of styling gums before. But now I love it for its performance. I actually have a new one in a bigger container but I'm such a lazy person, I didn't bother to take a photo.

Anyway, each Bench Fix product has a grade for "Hold" and "Shine". I like this styling gum because it gives a good amount of hold (4) for a good amount of shine (4). Also, I love the smell! So much better than the previous hair gel I used.

If you have similar problems as me, I suggest you try this one out.
with love, Anna Luisa

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Fun Orange Pop of Blue Summer/ Spring 2014 Make-up

Recently, I decided to do a makeup look fit for this season. We're right in the middle of summer in the Philippines and personally, I like sporting orange shades during this time of the year. I feel that this is the best (if not the only) moment to take my orange makeup out. In the middle of the year, rainy season starts and I go for a more neutral makeup. During this time, I stay away from bright shades to match the weather's mood. As the year comes to an end, however, I try to go for a bolder lip color like red and wine. Yet as the year starts anew, I like going for berries and pinks. So to cut the story short, summer season is the only season where I get to make use of my orange makeup often.

Usually, I just pick a focal point for my makeup (either my cheeks, lips or eyes) but for this tutorial, I did an all over orange look. And just to give it a twist, I added a bit of blue eyeliner as accent. Have fun watching through this tutorial!

For the complete list of products used, please read the video description here. Also, if you have time, don't forget to subscribe to my channel. Thanks!
with love, Anna Luisa

Friday, April 25, 2014

I Want To Be Part of Sample Room's Bloggers Circle

Try before you buy. How great would it be if you were given the chance to try out items for free before actually buying the product? Not just for beauty bloggers like me, but also for other people out there who doesn't want to waste hard earned money. Well, wish no more! Sample Room makes it possible for us! You might wanna ask, "Sample Room? What is that?". Read on and find out!

Sample Room is a website that allows registered members to try out specific products of different brands for a limited number of samples. I've been a member for a year now and my experience with Sample Room has always been great! There are a few steps to follow and this is basically how it works:
  1. Register.
  2. Get free points upon registration.
  3. Choose your sample.
  4. Checkout.
  5. Receive your samples.
  6. Post a review at SampleRoom.ph
  7. Get points by reviewing, get a new sample to try.
  8. Buying of points.

Last year, for the first time, Sample Room opened their Bloggers Circle to partner with certain beautiful, passionate and inspirational bloggers out there. I was aware of the requirements and even though my blog was already more than one year old during that time, I didn't submit an entry because I didn't feel like I'm good enough to be a partner. I know! Low self esteem really doesn't help anything at all! This time around, Sample Room is in search for more members for that circle and I don't plan to let the opportunity go for the second time! I really want to be a part of that circle and I hope I get chosen to be a partner blogger this time.

Wish me luck! :)

with love, Anna Luisa

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Celeteque Dermoscience Acne Solutions Oil Control Toner: Review

I may have mentioned this a couple of times before. Sometimes, being a beauty blogger is hard because you always want to try out new things to share with your readers. I also experience that from time to time but there are also times whenI try out one product and I don't find anything new or bad with it that I don't even know what to write. That very thing happened to me when I used the Celeteque Dermoscience Acne Solutions Oil Control Toner with Aloe Vera and Chamomile Extracts.

 Bought at Watson's.
 Budget friendly at PHP75 for 65 ml and PHP117 for 125 ml.
 Simple directions.

Celeteque is a good local brand. I've read countless of reviews online about how good their products are that I want to try them out for myself too. I've always had mixed feelings regarding this brand because it's always been a hit or miss for me. Back then, I saw a review from Janet's blog and I was convinced to try this one out.

This product is a well known product to control acne. As you all probably already know, I have oily sensitive acne prone skin. I think I have the best skin type to try out products like these so I went out and bought one.

During the course of my use (of the product), however, I didn't really feel like anything new happened. My skin did not dramatically improve but it did not worsen from its current state either. Basically, I feelt like the product was just so-so.

I really want to write more on this just so you have more idea but I honestly don't remember anything that stood out to me during the time I spent using the product so I really can't lengthen this post anymore. Let me just leave you with what their website says about the product.
CELETEQUE DermoScience™ Acne Solutions Oil Control Toner has Aloe Vera and Chamomile Extracts that help soothe the skin while removing the last traces of stubborn dirt.
Oh, and some of you may be waiting for my introduction post on the Korean organic skin care set (CELLBN) that I recently received but I still haven't transferred all the stills so please wait patiently. Hehehe. Sorry for the delays.
with love, Anna Luisa

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Colour Collection Ultimate Wear Lipstick (Headturner): Review

Colour Collection is a brand that I got to know through Sample Room. I had my first try of Colour Collection products when they sampled their Whitening BB Cream. At first, I didn't expect anything from it because I knew it was a local product and I never really found a local makeup base that I liked. My views changed once I had the chance to actually use it. Even though it is a local product, I feel that the quality is pretty good. That was when I developed this thought that Colour Collection is a promising local brand.

 The sample came with a free mini cleansing oil from Celeteque
 I've always liked their logo. I always carefully open their packaging because I don't want to accidentally rip the sticker and their logo.

I also got to try their Vitamin E Lipstick in Pinkish Nude (Sheer). Though I wasn't able to post a formal review (I forgot to take photos of the product.) of the said lipstick, I had a very nice experience while using the product. I used it as an everyday lip color and even though the color is natural and sheer, I got a lot of compliments while wearing that specific lip color. What's even better is that the lipstick was super moisturizing. However, it had a very lipstick-like taste and smell (I'm sure you know what I mean.) but the overall performance compensated for it. This was when I developed this trust with Colour Collection in general. It felt like a local brand that I can actually be confident in recommending other people with.

It did not stop there, though. Recently, I got myself the Colour Collection Ultimate Wear Lipstick in the shade Headturner. If you've been following my blog for a while now or if you're subscribed to my youtube channel, you might have already seen this particular product as I have included this in my Top 5 Summer/ Spring 2014 Lip Colors. Out of the five, this one is my favorite.

 I always feel like a Headturner when I'm wearing this.

I've been on the search for that perfect hot pink lip color. I've always thought that a bright bold lip is always perfect for when you want to go easy on eye makeup. And since summer is already here, I wanted a color that has pink tones instead of my usual red lip color (Milani Color Statelemt Lipstick in Ruby Valentine) that I loved to wear last November- January. So last January, I picked up a hot lipstick from another brand called Nichido (Do you want me to review this too?) and was pretty happy with it but I still wanted another hot pink lip color with more blue tones in it. It was particularly hard to find one in the local market so imagine my delight when I saw this being sampled in Sample Room. Good thing I had GCASH 'cashed in' in my account so I immediately ordered the product on the same day. In two days, I received the product. I was so excited!

I like that the packaging is black, it looks classy and the fact that it is a bit slimmer than the usual lipstick packaging also draws my attention to this product. I also like that it's small. It makes it easier to bring around when I go out.

 Swatch. :)
 Trying it out. :)

When I swatched the product, I was overjoyed. I finally found the perfect hot lipstick I was looking for! It has that nice bluish undertone. Now I have the two hot pink lip colors I've been looking for inside my makeup drawer and I can't be any happier.

What's even great about this product is that it lasts a long time. It stains the lips a bit so even though you eat and drink, you are still left with a little bit of color. The good news about this is that even though it works like stain, it doesn't feel like one as it does well in moisturizing. (Most stains I've previously used dry up my lips.)

 More lip swatches just because I feel like taking more than one shot.
I'm sorry for some dry patches on the sides of my nose. :p

I am extremely satisfied with this product, I even told my good friend Jade (Hi Jade!) to get one and she did! I would also love to recommend this product to you guys! I swear by it!
with love, Anna Luisa

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Korean Organic Skin Care Giveaway Prize from WISHTrend!!!

Hi everyone! I'm not sure if you are following me in my twitter or my youtube channel but just recently, I shared that I was chosen as the winner for a Korean Organic Skin Care Set (CELLBN) from Wishtrend.

One month ago, I joined a giveaway hosted by WISHTrendTV. The giveaway was looking for one winner to try out Organic Skin Care products that they talked about in this video. I was actually not expecting to win. After all, there were already so many entries that I just tried out my luck. All I had to do was be subscribed to their channel (I already was), share the video (I shared it in twitter), add the hashtag WishtrendGiveaway and comment down why I wanted to try their awesome products. Check out the original giveaway video here:

I responded like this:
I have really sensitive acne prone skin. My struggle with acne has started ever since I started my teenage years. For more than ten years, acne has been a problem that I had to face. Sure, OTC acne medications helped keep them at bay and it is true that my acne problem has been reduced over time but it still did not completely go away. Right now, I am using dermatologist prescribed products but this causes redness and extreme peeling, if used for a long time. I wanna try out organic products that are gentler on the skin but would yield good results.
Two weeks ago, I was notified that I won! I was so psyched! I even sent a message to my family and friends. It was like I won the lottery or something! I was extremely happy! I sent an e-mail to WISHtrend and got the confirmation. Finally, last week, they sent the parcel.

(Sings) Bubble bubble pop, bubble bubble pop pop! Haha. Yes, it's bubble wrapped! Weee!
CELLBN Organic Skin Care Set

The other day, I got a notice saying I have a parcel to pick up at the post office and I immediately thought of Wishtrend's package that I have been waiting for. It took about a week for it to arrive here, which is actually faster than I expected since generally local post offices hold packages for a longer period of time before releasing it. I was so excited and as soon as I got ready, I immediately went out to claim the package. It was Wednesday, then. Holy Week. And when I arrived, the post office was closed! I was so confused since the notice said I could pick the item up from 1:00PM- 5:00PM and it was just half past 4 back then, so I really had no idea why the office was closed. Luckily, a guy was inside the office grounds and helped me. Apparently, since it was Holy Wednesday, the office was only open for half a day! Good thing lady luck was on my side and the staff hasn't gone home yet. The guy gave my notice to the remaining staff and they were kind enough to accommodate me, even though all the doors were already locked.

To cut the story short, I got ahold of my package! Yay! But it was getting dark then so I couldn't really open the package. I mean, I could. But I wouldn't be able to film an unboxing video, which I had already planned. So I decided to just leave my package alone for the night and restrain myself from opening the said parcel until the sun comes out the next day and gives me an opportunity to film an unboxing the video.

Yesterday, the sun was cooperating well, shining brightly, that I immediately filmed an unboxing video just minutes after I woke up. Of course, I washed my face first, brushed my teeth and drank my thyroid medicine (I got my thyroid removed before). But after all that, I immediately filmed the unboxing of the video. I got the CELLBN Organic Skin Care Set from Wishtrend, a set that costs about $250. Never did I imagine that I would come to a point that I would be given the chance to try a high end (expensive) product like this one. I was ecstatic! Here's the video of me unboxing the Wishtrend package!

I was so happy, I even placed closed captions in this video. Whew! ;)

I also did a small photo session of each of the items, filmed a nice video showcasing each of the items for my overview/ first impression video/ blog post so basically, expect that there will be a couple of videos and blog posts regarding this skin care set. The photos above were not really taken very well but I assure you that the next posts will have better photos.

Oh, and I'm typing this post in advance so this will probably be up tomorrow, two days after the actual unboxing day. :)
with love, Anna Luisa

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Etude House Apricot Stick #1: Review

I don't know if you've noticed but I've been reviewing Korean products nonstop for the past month or so. These past few years, my collection of Korean cosmetics has grown so much that I'm not even sure when I might be able to review them all for you. But then again, this helps me in maintaining this blog because through different experiences with make-up and skin care, I can share my thoughts here. For those who are already into Korean cosmetics, I'm pretty sure some of my posts have helped you in one way or another and for those who haven't tried them yet, maybe my posts are signs for you to try them out! Personally, I like using Korean cosmetics as I feel they match my skin type (and tone) very well and they are very much ahead in beauty trends.

The product I'm about to show you, however, is not a new line from Etude House. It's been in their stores for quite some time now and it's the Etude House Apricot Stick in the shade #1 Dalkom Podo. I'm not actually sure what it means but I read it in hangul and that's what it says. I've put a little bit of research and I'm guessing it means sweet grapes since according to google dalkom means sweet and podo means grapes. It does smell a bit like grape flavored candy, now that I think about it. Do correct me if I'm wrong, though.

 Unlike most Etude House packaging, this one is pretty plain but I still like it because of the color. It's a bright reddish pink!
 Here's the sticker that says the shade number.
 And the one that says "dalkom podo".

I consider this product as a tinted lip balm. I'm not exactly sure how it is marketed but in my honest opinion, it looks and functions like a tinted lip balm. Now I've had my fair share of tinted lip balms before from Nivea and Maybelline, and this products works just like them. I find products like these very suitable as an everyday lip color for when you just want to go out shortly to the nearest grocery store to buy one ingredient you forgot to buy the weekend before for your planned dinner, Crispy Korean Fried Chicken.

I, on the other hand, have been so obsessed with this product that I even use it at work! It doesn't have a very good color pay off but it is very moisturizing so I always keep it in my pocket for a quick touch up to keep me from looking like a zombie through my long hospital duty hours.

This particular product was actually a gift from my good friend, Jade. Hi Jade! I'm not sure how much this costs but I've always found Etude House products to be reasonably priced so I'm sure this is a pocket friendly product.

 Just like its name, the product comes out as a stick.
 One swatch.

As you can see and as I've mentioned before, this particular product provides sheer moisturizing color, similar to other tinted lip balms I've tried. I usually touch up after 3 hours or so and I always keep this in my pocket for a quick lip treatment/color. In my opinion, this product is perfect for those who want to go for a natural look. It glides on very smoothly on your lips and it moisturizes chapped lips very well. I only stopped using this when I completely ran out of it. Otherwise, I wouldn't stop using it.

 Sheer and natural. That's how I used to roll. :) Sorry for all the blemishes you can see around my mouth. I was having a bad case of breakouts then.

Another product that I want to mention is this Red Ginseng face mask that I previously used from Etude House. Since I completely failed in taking a photo of the back side of the face mask, I searched its use and apparently, ginseng is for skin restoration- perfect for those who have damaged skin due to stress, pollution, debris and weather. It helps skin in keeping it firm and smooth. It has an herby scent- oddly, I like it. It makes me feel like I'm actually putting the real good stuff on my face. For its effects, it's very much the same as I previously discussed in my face mask/face pack post. I highly suggest that you give it a try!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Nichido Mineral Kohl Pencil in Onyx: Review

Hi guys! Here's another product review that I came to know about through Say Artillero. She mentioned this particular product a couple of times in her videos and I got really curious as to how good the product really is. When my sister asked me to buy her an eyeliner (a year ago), I bought this for her. I sometimes use this when she brings my own eyeliner to school. I haven't tried Nichido eyeliners before so I'm not really sure what to expect. There were actually testers on the Nichido counters but I was so short in time back then that I just grabbed this without trying it out. To make the story short, I just trusted whatever Say had to say about the product and bought the thing. Other people call it faith, I call it being a fan. Hahaha!

 PHP138 only. Bought this from Watsons.
 Water resistant.
 I especially like my eyeliners when they're freshly sharpened.  Some weird satisfaction, I guess. :)

So enough about how I got to know about the product and more on the product review. This particular item is a local Philippine product from Nichido and if you're living in the Philippines, you probably are familiar with the brand. But just in case you're not from here and you're planning to buy this particular product for your next trip to the Philippines, you can find Nichido counters in leading department stores and Watsons. I personally only see them in Watsons stores but I think they are also in big department stores nationwide. Don't fret, though, because Watsons is scattered all around the Philippines so I'm pretty sure you're bound to pass by one, especially if you're planning on going to the big malls out here like SM and Robinson's.

It costs about PHP138, which is pretty cheap for an eyeliner. It has a cap to protect the (actual) pencil from getting messed up in your makeup bag/storage. The pencil is just the right size, it has already lasted me more than a year, even though I've already used it a lot of times before.

 Lately, I've been failing my swatch photos. This swatch was poorly drawn. Please refer to my video below for better reference on its performance.
Tried smudging and it did, sadly.

I tried swatching it and the above photo is the only photo I have of it. It's not the best swatch, actually. It looks as though the line is bleeding and it looks too thick than the actual ones that I do when I line my eyes. But anyway, as you can see, with just one stroke, the line is pretty much black. I drew this with a light hand so you can definitely make it more intense with a heavier stroke. The liner itself is creamy that's why it glides on pretty smoothly upon application, which I like. This eyeliner is quite the perfect pencil liner for me, if only it didn't get smudged.

Yes, it is water resistant but it gets affected by my oily lids and tends to transfer from my lash line onto the middle of my eyelid. Also, it gets easily smudged especially when I accidentally rub my eyes unconsciously. I usually just use this for lining my waterline and tightlining. Other than that, I use it as a base for black eye shadow to create smokey looks.

If you guys are interested, I have a make-up tutorial wherein I used this specific liner as a base for my black eyeshadow to create a K-Pop smokey eye make-up. Enjoy!

I would also like to give a shoutout to my good friend Jade, who recently moved to UK. I also mentioned her in my other blog, Yoboseyo-Asia. This is just in case she missed my greeting on that one. Thank you so much for following my blog and my youtube channel. One thing I regret is not teaching you my know-hows in make-up. I just hope my posts here in my blog and my tutorials in youtube help you instead. I have officially included going to UK in my bucket list so wait for me!

with love, Anna Luisa

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Etude House Color Pop Shine Tint in Vita Pop: Review

It's the season to be bright and bold! At least that's how I believe this season is to be. I live in the Philippines and we're in the middle of summer. Temperature is so high, I can't even leave an air conditioned room in the middle of the day. Let's take today for example. Today is April 12 (one day before this post gets published) and the temperature ranges from 25-33 C, at least that's what my trusty iPad Mini says. It gets unbelievably hot around 2-3PM and even after that, the air just seems to sizzle with heat every single time I get out of the room. Make sure to hydrate yourself well, drink a lot of water and as much as possible, don't expose yourself from too much heat. You don't want to experience heat stroke, right?
In some countries, however, it is still partially cold as they just transitioned to the spring season. Oh, how I envy you. I envy those especially who has cherry blossoms to look at. But may it be spring or summer, bright lip colors would still suit the season! I particularly like pink and orange shades for this season. I'm not sure if you've seen my Top 5 Summer/Spring Lip Colors 2014 but this particular product I'm about to talk about is included in that list and it's the only non-local product I included in the lot. It is non other than the Etude House Color Pop Shine Tint in Vita Pop!

I've had this for quite a while, again from my trusty, favorite online shop called Kkochipida. It was not yet available in Etude House stores back then and this was the first local online store that offered the product for a reasonable price. No, this is not sponsored. I bought this with my own money last year. I've been using this since late August (Yes, I did not use it right away.) but I only found time to write down my thoughts today. (Talk about major back log there!)

If I'm not mistaken, Color Pop Shine Tint collection from Etude House came out last year as part of their summer collection. So when they released this, summer was actually already over (or closely getting over) here in the Philippines. Good thing we live in a tropical country so I managed to still rock this even after summer.

I got it in the shade no. 3 (Vita Pop). I think this one looks closest to the tangerine shade I've always coveted ever since Dara became an Etude House endorser. I know it's f(x)'s Krystal and Sulli who endorses the brand nowadays but I just can't forget who actually convinced me of trying out orange shades as part of my makeup routine. If you're not familiar with Dara's Miss Tangerine days, you can check her CF here.

I'm not sure why I took so many shots of the applicator but it's nothing really fancy or extraordinary. Truth be told, I have small issues on the length of the applicator since it is too short for my taste but it's nothing too much that I would actually complain about. It gets the job done anyway.

Here is a swatch and just as I've said, it is as tangerine as I hoped it would look like. I especially like to do an ombre look using this, along with my Ever Bilena lipstick in Retro. Otherwise, using it on its own is okay too.

Like any other tints, it stains the lips for a longer lasting staying power. The difference, however, is the finish, which as one would assume from its name, is glossy/ shiny. I don't think my lips dry up as much as other tints do with this particular product probably because of the finish. On the other hand, the downside is that it doesn't stay as long as the other tints I've tried. It doesn't bother me, though. Because I only really just bought this because I wanted its shade. Originally, I thought this would only look like a colored lip gloss on my lips that would just last for an hour or so. But as stated above, it provides good color pay off, finishes with a gloss and has a comparable (but sadly not up to par) staying power. Needless to say, it performed better than my expectations that is why I am very impressed with this product. I highly recommend this especially during this summer/ spring season. If you want a video swatch, be sure to check out my Top 5 Summer/ Spring Lip Colors 2014 over here where I swatched all my favorite lip colors for this season, including this.

Three weeks ago, I went to Etude House Glorietta and I saw that this particular product was still in stock so I'm pretty sure it is still available in Etude House boutiques out there. But if you want, you can just ask Etude House Philippines through their facebook page to check if it is in fact, still in stores. It is priced at PHP478. If no Etude House branch is near you and you feel like losing hope, don't fret. Kkochipida is the answer to your prayers!
with love, Anna Luisa