Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Etude House Petit Bijou Cotton Snow

Are you a fan of that powdery clean, baby scent? If so, then you'll love the Petit Bijou Cotton Snow products from Etude House. Although the design of the packaging of the Petit Bijou range looks like baby products (complete with pastel colored drawings and letters), I'm not really sure if you can actually use this on babies.

Etude House Petit Bijou Cotton Snow Soft Body Wash
This body wash gently cleanses delicate baby skin.

Etude House Petit Bijou Cotton Snow Moisture Body Lotion
This body lotion moisturizes delicate baby skin with watery smooth lotion.

Etude House Petit Bijou Cotton Snow products are formulated with aloe vera, chamomile and the Petit Bijou fragrance to soften and relieve stressed skin. What I love about it is that it's very gentle and safe for sensitive skin, as it has no sulfates, paraben, soap, dyes, and alcohol content.

The soft body wash has a very light texture that foams up nicely (with the help of a bath lily). It leaves my skin soft and clean, with a subtle powder scent. The body lotion has a watery (but not runny) texture that feels fresh and light on the skin. I find the scent quite strong upon application, but it settles down nicely after a few minutes.

Between the two, I prefer the soft body wash. I like that it's not drying but it does the job of cleansing my skin. I'm not so crazy about the lotion though as I prefer thicker body moisturizers.

Care to share what bath products you're currently using? :)

Love,
Helen 

Monday, January 28, 2013

Cafe Breton: French Crepes & Fine Coffee

My colleagues and I went to Cafe Breton on whim for our afternoon break. (The perks of working in UP Technohub are the many restaurants that are just a few steps away from our office building.) This was a nice change to our usual medienda in Mini Stop.

Cafe Breton, UP Technohub


The interiors of this quaint little creperie has a homey-feel to it, complete with wooden tables and chairs, and the decors inside the place. The crew were nice and courteous, and the service was quite fast, too.
 
Blueberries & Cream (P238.00)
blueberries in syrup and cream, a generous serving of vanilla ice cream, topped with whipped cream

My colleague had the ice cream of this crepe changed from vanilla to caramel, which was so good. This crepe was mildly sweet, and you can't go wrong with blueberries.

Original Sin (P260.00)
Stewed apples, caramel ice cream, caramel syrup, walnuts, whipped cream

My colleague and I shared this order, and we had the crepe split upon serving. This is how a half-order of Original Sin looked like. I'm not wild about the apples, because I prefer sweeter fruits like mangoes and berries, but I loved the caramel ice cream in this order. I love how the hot apples and the cold ice cream tasted when mixed.

Cafe Breton has lots of other sweet (and even savory) crepes, and the next one on my list is La Pinay and Cherries Jubilee Flambe (a crepe that's literally on fire!).

What's your top pick from Cafe Breton?

Love,
Helen  

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Crystalline Skin Body Treatment at The Spa Trinoma

If you're fond of going to the spa and having massages, then you'd know that The Spa is like the HG (Holy Grail) of spas in the metro. Each branch of The Spa had a unique look and feel, and their Trinoma branch had a safari theme. Aminst the urban jungle that is the North, The Spa was the most tranquil and relaxing place to be when in Trinoma.

Since I'm excited (too excited, to be exact) for my beach trip that's planned next month, I availed the The Spa's Crystalline Skin Body Treatment for glowing, super smooth and healthy skin.

About Crystalline Skin Body Treatment:
Achieve total skin brilliance from this rejuvenating full body treatment! Skin is renewed and polished with a natural gentle scrub rich with the finest ingredients that nature has to offer. This treatment renders a smooth, brighter complexion and a youthful healthy glow. Your spa journey is completed by The Spa’s relaxing massage which also uses Pevonia Botanica’s one of a kind massage oil which delivers the latest technology in massage oil in the cosmetic world. Rich in nourishing extracts from Safflower and Geranium oil- giving ultimate skin nourishment and repair while Vitamin E gives powerful anti-oxidants as it also hydrates.

Price:
  • Executive: P1,900.00 (Regular), P1,600.00 (Member)
  • Suite/Villa: P2,600.00 (Regular), P2,300.00 (Member)

Duration: 90 minutes
  • 30 minutes for the body scrub
  • 60 minutes for the full body massage    

I was booked at 2:00PM in the afternoon, and I arrived 1:30PM to shower and make use of the steam room. No need to bring anything aside from yourself, as The Spa has towels, bathrobes, slippers, toiletries, and disposable underwear provided. After the initial preparation, I was served with their well-loved ginger tea. I've talked about my love for teas before, and this one from The Spa is worth coming back to. It has that kick of spice and the right level of sweetness to it, and I just loved how it tasted.

I was then led to a treatment room where I had my body scrub. For the Crystalline Skin Body Treatment, The Spa uses products from Pevonia Botanica. I loved that the scrub smelled clean and refreshing, and it was gentle yet thoroughly exfoliating. My aesthetician covered all bases from my shoulders down to my feet. I am used to DIY body scrubs at home, and it was such a pampering treat to have my scrub done by pros. After 30 minutes, I rinsed the scrub off in the shower area inside the treatment room, and I so loved the results! My skin all over my body felt so soft, smooth, and supple. It has never been this healthy (and to think that I had flaky skin on my legs and my waist area). The sides of my waist which had always been dry and darker than the rest of my body for some reason was noticeably fairer and smoother, and so is my lower back.

Photo Credit: The Spa

After my scrub, I was led to the dim yet cozy waiting area where I had another serving of their steamy cup of zingy ginger tea. (I could drink their ginger tea all day.) I was then led to a private safari-inspired tent for my head-to-toe massage. One hour of blissful shiatsu massage (with lotion) was so relaxing, and it melted all stress and muscle soreness away. If I could just sleep right there after the treatment, I would. The Spa's massage therapists are good like that. My skin looked more radiant right after, as if I had a good night's sleep. (It must be also the effect of the face massage, which gave me a rosy glow on my face, even without any makeup on.)


To cap off my first experience in The Spa, I had just a polish change (P150.00) since I'm still scared of manicures and all the cuticle pushing that might occur. I chose a blood red shade since I have this obsession with red nails (and red lips, for that matter). My nails are short, and they were just filed a little bit before the polish was applied. Red nails never fail to make me feel so ladylike.

It's nice to treat and pamper yourself every once in a while. I've never been fond of spas before, but since I've had my first The Spa experience, I can say that I'm already looking forward to my next visit. I'm curious on how their other branches look like, too!

Have you tried any treatment from The Spa? Which one do you suggest I try next?

The Spa Trinoma
Level 3, TriNoma Mall, North Ave, QC
Tel Nos: 900-8809 / 900-8818 / 0933 3861800

Mon -Thur 12nn – 10 pm / Fri – Sat 11am – 10 pm
Last call: 8:30pm
 


Love,
Helen

Package Day: Avon Philippines

Yesterday was package day again! This time it's from Avon Philippines.


They're giving away 35 bras daily until January 31, 2013, so you better go over to Avon Philippines on Facebook and click the "35 FREE Avon Bras Daily" tab to join. You may check the daily winners list here. If ever you win, Avon will send your prize via courier.


I knew I inputted my correct bra size in the field, but somehow I didn't get the right size for my prize. I'll be giving this to my friend instead. I'd still like to thank Avon Philippines for this one!

Do join, and I hope you all win! ;)

Love,
Helen

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Free Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm from Beauty Bar

Today, I dropped by Beauty Bar in Trinoma to have my old lip balm exchanged to Burt's Bees for FREE! They announced this on their Facebook page a few days ago.

Change your old lip balm with a 100% natural one for FREE.


I went there a little past 1:00PM, and there were already lots of people who had their old lip balms exchanged! (I see Carmex, Human Nature, LipSmacker, Maybelline, Nivea, and Watsons.) This exchange happened today 1:00-5:00PM, or until supplies last, which was 100 lip balms per branch.

Thank you for this, Beauty Bar!


I'm excited to try this one out! A new lip balm is always a welcome addition to my kit. Like Beauty Bar Philippines on Facebook so you don't miss out on their updates and promos. :)

Love,
Helen

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Made In Candy Philippines

Who here loves candy? I know I do! :D I'll share with you the cutest candies I've seen lately - Made In Candy! This jar I have at home is from my sister.


Made In Candy opened up their first store here in the Philippines late last year at Rockwell Powerplant Mall. I haven't been to their store to witness the candy artisan craft their hand-made candies by hand in front of the customers, but I bet it's an amazing sight!
 
When no two pieces of candy are ever the same, you know we make rock candy lovingly by hand.


This jar holds lots of different designs and flavors of rock candy. Not only do they look good, they also taste great! You can distinctly distinguish the flavors from each piece.
 
I ♥ Philippines

I've seen online that Made In Candy could also make customized candies (for events and the like). A personalized jar of candies would make nice giveaways and souvenirs.


Get your rock candy fix over at Made In Candy, Philippines. Have a sweet day! :)

Love,
Helen

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Beauty Resolution: Perfectly Groomed Brows & Kissable Lips

This year, make it your beauty resolution to always have perfectly groomed brows and kissable lips. I'll share with you some of The Body Shop's classics to help you with that, plus a NEW product that I'm excited about!

The Body Shop Brow & Liner Kit (P995.00 -> P795.00 until January 31, 2013)

This handy compact contains everything you need to create perfect eyebrows: a double-ended brush and light and dark shades to fill and define. It has two shades, brown and brunette. Dermatoligically and Ophthalmologically tested and suitable for contact-lens wearers.

Ever since I learned the basics of brow grooming, I've never left the house without first filling in my sparse eyebrows. Groomed brows frame my face and make me look polished, so I need less makeup elsewhere. Sometimes, I just go to work with my filled-in brows, tinted lip balm, and sunscreen - nothing more, and I manage to look fine the entire day. This Brow and Liner Kit from The Body Shop is an investment that will last for over a year even with everyday use.

The Body Shop Lip Scuff (P695.00 -> P495.00 until January 31, 2013)

Say goodbye to chapped lips with The Body Shop’s Lip Scuff. Get lip therapy that gently exfoliates the lips, removing dead skin cells, leaving the lips feeling smooth, soft and conditioned.

The Lip Scuff is similar to a lip scrub that's meant to be used once or twice a week. I'd recommend this for those who have dry, chappy lips. This product takes away every flaky bit off your lips and is not damaging compared to using a toothbrush to exfoliate your lips. Remember to always use a lip balm right after!

The Body Shop (New!) Lip Gloss (P595.00 -> P395.00 until January 31, 2013)

Say hello to luscious lips with our new and juicy fruit lip glosses in different flavors you’ll surely love.

While I said that I'm over my lip gloss phase, seeing these made me think otherwise! I've actually sniffed some of these in store, and yes, they do smell as yummy as they look! I wonder if they taste as good as they smell, too. The only way to find out is to get one, but which?

Get these products from The Body Shop, Philippines at P200.00 off until January 31, 2013!

Love,
Helen

Monday, January 21, 2013

Snoe Awesome Poresome Microdermabrasion Retexturizing Polish

I'm usually hesitant in trying out new facial care products, but if it's from Snoe, go lang! I trust this brand when it comes to my skincare needs. My favorite Snoe Star Night Star Bright Night Perfecting Toner which has worked wonders in making (and keeping) my skin clear to date is going to be discontinued, but a better version of it will emerge. I already have a backup, and I am excited for the improved version!

Now on to the main topic of this post. Even if I have been beauty blogging for almost 2 years, I'm still scared of facials done in clinics and big skincare words like "microdermabrasion". I've never had a facial or peel done, and I don't think I will anytime soon, but if it's a DIY facial that I can do at home, then it's all good. Snoe has come up with a "diamond peel in a jar", which is the Snoe Awesome Poresome Microdermabrasion Retexturizing Polish.

Snoe Awesome Poresome Microdermabrasion Retexturizing Polish (P399.00/50g)

About the product:


I haven't used a face scrub in ages, so I was so excited to add this to my routine. This product contains four star ingredients: (1) Witch hazel extract to reduce inflammation and irritation caused by acne, (2) Azeloglicina to regulate sebum production, (3) Betaine to moisturize, enhance radiance, reduce skin irritation and lighten skin, and (4) Pineapple extract to exfoliate.

How to use:

1. Scoop out a small amount from the jar and use wet fingertips to spread product across your face.


2. Apply light pressure, massage in upward, circular motions for 1 to 2 minutes while avoiding the eye area. 
3. Rinse thoroughly with cool water and pat dry.



This is safe to use every other day, but I just use it once or twice a week. I'm loving the gentle, round beads of this scrub; it's not abrasive enough to cause micro-cuts on the skin (unlike natural scrubs that may have uneven surfaces). It's gentle but potent, and it gets the job done in making my skin look and feel fresh. My skin feels so luxuriously soft and smooth as I rinse the product off, it's almost unreal! I wake up to less oily skin even after 2 to 3 days. I also love the cooling sensation of this scrub, and I believe that this helps calm down irritated skin. I use this as my weekly skin cleanup to unclog my pores and prevent future breakouts. I highly recommend this product to oily, acne-prone skin.

What face scrub are you currently using?

Love,
Helen 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Snoe Hair Heroes Honey Olive Clementine Shampoo & Conditioner

For hair care products, I don't mind spending a little more if it makes my hair happy. Before, I just used any shampoo and conditioner I find in the bathroom, and hated how fluffy and unruly my hair was. I have come to realize how a good, nourishing, sulfate-free shampoo and conditioner can make a huge difference. My current obsessions are Snoe's Hair Heroes Honey Olive Clementine Shampoo and Conditioner.

Snoe Hair Heroes Honey Olive Clementine Damage Recovery Cream Shampoo & Conditioner (P399.00 for the 250ml shampoo; P199.00 for the 250ml conditioner - got it on sale at 50% off)

Snoe Hair Heroes Honey Olive Clementine Sulfate Free Shampoo and Conditioner are loaded with tons of nourishing oils known for their ultra moisturizing, regenerative, and nourishing properties that will help hair recover from damage! These products will rehabilitate, repair, strengthen, and rebuild hair appearance, and minimize breakage by conditioning the hair. Recommended for those with dry, coarse brittle tresses.

Indulge your senses with this exotic blend of:
  • Honey extract: High in vitamins and minerals, a good humectant and moisturizer
  • Olive fruit oil: Nourishes, conditions, and improves the strength and elasticity
  • Clementine orange extract: Age reversing anti-oxidants that gives natural shine
  • Vitamin E: Helps hair to grow, prevent split ends, help heal hair damaged by excessive use of a hair dryer, and cure dry hair as well
  • Panthenol pro vit B5: Thickens the hair by up to 10% thus, increases strength of hair, resistance to breakage
  • Guar Gum*: Rich in softening and conditioning benefits, without leaving build-up. It forms a protective barrier on the hair and helps control fly-away and frizzy hair. It also promotes shine to the hair. (only for shampoo)
  • Wheatgerm*: Contains a host of vitamins that benefit the hair and scalp including vitamin A, E, and D, as well as a number of B vitamins – B1, B2, B3 and B6. (only for conditioner)

 
This duo works great for those who aren't entirely comfortable with using cleansing conditioners alone. I love the refreshing and invigorating blend of citrus and green notes, and the fact that the scent lasts for a long time. The shampoo (and even the conditioner) is free from sulfates, hence it doesn't bubble as much as conventional shampoos, but rest assured that it will still leave your hair clean after every wash. But because of my dry hair, I can't use the shampoo alone so I always follow through with the conditioner for a moisturizing boost. I can feel my hair turning soft every time I rinse the conditioner off, and I love how it tames my waves.

Snoe Hair Heroes products are amazing! I don't think I will ever go back to those shampoos and conditioners that aren't sulfate-free. The next one on my list is Snoe Hair Heroes Amplify!

Which Snoe Hair Heroes product is your hair hero? :)

Love,
Helen

Saturday, January 19, 2013

The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Body Lotion

I love free weekends when I can get up at 12 noon and do nothing all day! Since today is a feel good Saturday for me, I'd love to share with you all a feel good product that I (and my sisters) love! I've raved about how much I loved body butters from The Body Shop, and how I wasn't satisfied with most lotions because they didn't moisturize my skin enough. The I discovered something - with lotions, consistency is the key. With consistency, I don't mean how viscous the product is, but how often you apply it.


When I ran out of body butter, I gave lotions a chance with The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Body Lotion. I'm halfway through with my bottle, and I am in love with it.

The Body Shop Vineyard Peach Body Lotion (P750.00)
A superb body lotion which goes on light and smells divine. For everyday moisture and feel good, peachy fragrance.

Ingredients:


The back part of the bottle label has this scannable code which lets you know more about the interesting and amazing Community Fair Trade ingredients stories of The Body Shop.

This body lotion provides lightweight moisture for dry skin with peach extract and vineyard peach fragrance. It also contains shea butter, which is known to be highly moisturizing. I love the light and non-sticky feel, and how soft, supple, and moisturized my skin always feels afterwards. I used this all over my body every night, and I haven't been getting rough, dry, and cracked skin since. During the day, I only use this on my legs since I wear skirts to work and I wouldn't want the air conditioner to suck the moisture out of my skin. The best part of the product would be the sweet, fruity, and deliciously fresh scent. It would have been lovely had The Body Shop also released a body mist for this limited edition body care range.

As I have said, the Vineyard Peach products you see in store are limited edition, so catch them while you can!

Love,
Helen

Friday, January 18, 2013

Package Day: Golden Merchandise

This week, I received my first ever package for 2013, and it was from Golden Merchandise! I was their Gift Three Winner for their "12 Gifts of Golden" giveaway, wherein they give away goodies for twelve straight weeks. (So generous, right?) Even if I already knew what's inside, I just can't help but feel excited the moment I received it!

Package from Golden Merchandise

I won Taylor Swift's Red album from their giveaway. This one is the regular version, with a different cover from my Red Deluxe Edition copy. (I was not really expecting to win when I bought my own copy, so now I have two! It's crazy. Haha!)
 

I loved the personal touch - pink and yellow ribbons with a note from Golden Merchandise! (Thank you so much!)

Taylor Swift's Red album

I actually prefer this cover compared to the one on the Deluxe Edition. (But then, the Deluxe Edition of Red has 6 bonus tracks in it.)

Golden Merchandise is now at Gift Four of Twelve, and they're giving away 3 Fandom Merch packs from Collograph.


Prizes:
  1. 1D/HP Pack 1: 1 Harry Potter To Do List, 1 Mirror of Erised Keychain, and 1 1D Things To Do List 
  2. 1D/HP Pack 2: 1 Harry Potter To Do List, 1 Infinite Keychain, and 1 Vas Happenin Check List 
  3. THG Pack: 1 The Hunger Games To Do List, and 1 Real or Not Real Keychain

Like Golden Merchandise on Facebook to join (and see the mechanics). Winners for gift four will be announced tomorrow, so you still have time to join!

Love,
Helen

Thursday, January 17, 2013

NOTD: Color Club in Warhol & Femme Fatale

While others are busy with merienda during afternoon breaks, my officemate and I decided to go the kikay route and paint our nails in hot neon pink in 15 minutes! Good thing Color Club Professional Nail Lacquers dry fast.

 
Color Club Professional Nail Lacquer in Warhol & Femme Fatale

Warhol is a hot neon pink shade that dries to a semi-matte finish, while Femme Fatale is a clear polish with soft pink shimmers.

When Worn: Color Club in Warhol
(Indoor lighting)

Color Club Warhol + Femme Fatale

While I wished that Warhol could be a bit shinier, I absolutely loved the color. The color is hard to describe - sometimes it looks bright pink, hot pink, or even reddish pink! For a glossier finish, just add a top coat as I did!

Femme Fatale, on the other hand, is clear with beautiful hints of soft pink. It's shimmery but not that visible when wore alone. Hence, I used it to top off my pink nails. It adds dimension to the entire look with its fine shimmer, and it looks so lovely especially under sunlight.

When Worn: Color Club in Warhol + Femme Fatale
(Under sunlight)

I used 2 coats of Warhol and added a single layer of Femme Fatale (as top coat) for a shimmery finish. Color Club's high-quality professional formula is vegan and free from formaldehyde, toluene, and DBP. You can get them at P300.00 a pop in Get Polished! Nail Spa.

What nail polish are you wearing today? :)

Love,
Helen

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Gong Cha Winter Melon Tea

I love trying out new drinks from many milk tea chains here in Manila, but Gong Cha Winter Melon Tea is the classic that I always come back to!

Gong Cha Winter Melon Tea

I've always had my order of this one with pearl as its sinker, but then realized that I liked pudding more since I'm too lazy to chew while drinking. I was surprised to see my Gong Cha Winter Melon Tea looking so pale, but apparently it was the black pearls that made my drink look darker before.


With this one, you don't get to choose your sugar level, but that's perfectly fine with me since this one is not too sweet. I love the how mildly sweet and pleasantly smooth and light this drink is. The milky creamy layer on top is an added treat, and whether you like to sip and savor it first or mix it right away, both methods are perfectly okay. Plus, they don't skimp on their sinkers - look at all those pudding! ♥

Next time, I'll try to be more adventurous and try out other drinks from Gong Cha, but I might yet again get swayed by my favorite and order this same drink.

Love,
Helen 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Mary Kay Creme Lipstick in Dusty Rose

It was my cousin who first introduced Mary Kay cosmetics to me way back when I was in high school. I was still at my lip gloss phase, and I remember saving up for Velocity Facial Cleanser (which smells so good!) and Mary Kay Nourishine Lip Gloss in Pink Diamonds, which was my go-to lippie then. My mom, on the other hand, would always use her trusty Mary Kay Creme Lipstick in Toffee, which is a lovely neutral shade. Now that I am long over my lip gloss phase, I'd love to share with you all a super nice shade of lipstick, which is Mary Kay Creme Lipstick in Dusty Rose.

Mary Kay Creme Lipstick in Dusty Rose (P650.00)

This petal-soft pink is the perfect pastel for year-round wear – just one of so many glamorous shades from the Mary Kay Creme Lipstick collection. The long-wearing, stay-true color glides on with a lightweight, creamy texture for maximum color impact that lasts. Plus, it won’t feather or bleed. It’s even enhanced with vitamin E and a vitamin C derivative to help ward off wrinkle-causing free radicals. And it's fragrance-free with a hint of vanilla flavor.


Mary Kay lipsticks come in a simple yet classy packaging. The product comes with a box, and the lipstick is housed in a sturdy and sleek black tube. The lipstick tube casts off subtle metallic shimmer when light hits it.

Ingredients: 


As much as I like this lipstick, I wish Mary Kay didn't have to include carmine in making this lipstick. Carmine is a red pigment that comes from crushed bugs.


On the top of the cap for all Mary Kay Creme Lipsticks is the actual shade of the lipstick, so you won't have to look at the base just to see the shade name.


Swatch:


At first glance, I thought that I wouldn't like it or use it much, since I'm more into red lipsticks than pinks. But at first swipe, I knew that this pink is a keeper. It's not your usual sweet baby pink shade. This one comes off as warm pink, a "my lips but brighter" shade. (Made that up just now.) This one goes so well with my light complexion, as it instantly gives life and color to my face even if I just wear it alone. It has that lovely peachy pink shade that makes me look fresh and blooming.

As for the texture, I also like since it is creamy without being greasy. It does not bleed nor does it find its way to my teeth. This one has very fine micro-shimmers that is barely noticeable. (I hate obvious shimmer or glitter on my lips.) This lipstick is also pigmented, a light swipe is enough for that super natural no-makeup finish. For the swatch above, I applied straight from the tube, which is how the color payoff actually is. The lipstick has that sweet hint of vanilla, which reminds me of my Mary Kay lip gloss from the past.

I'm loving my first ever Mary Kay lipstick! Do you have a favorite shade from the Mary Kay Creme Lipstick line?

Love,
Helen 
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