July 31, 2013

Monthly: Sam's July Favorites


HI EVERYONE! Okay, Ashley is back which means I am ecstatic. So happy I am beyond words. So happy that.. I kinda delayed on my July Favorites. To that, I am so so so so sorry. Really. I've been spending.. well everyday with her almost! But school is starting, and July has ended, so it's time to release my 5 cannot live without products this month!


- - 

SKII's Facial Treatment Essence



If you guys read my previous Epiduo post, you'd know I was test-driving this baby! In fact, during that period, I was still trying out the samples. However, as you can see from my half-used bottle, that I've become a convert and bought a full-sized product! (By full sized I mean the travel sized 75ml one.. not the crazy 250ml one lol.)

I must say, I know why everyone raves about this. When Ashley first came back and saw my face she was like "WOW SAM YOU'RE GLOWING." She even told me I could forget about my Guerlain Meteorites already! I love the softness of my skin, the moistness and hydration, and just.. all round benefits. My red spots disappear quicker, my acne is better controlled.. and.. well I could rave on but I'd need a post for that. A++ product. SO MUCH LOVE.

Price: $99 at SKII Counters for 75ml

Stockists: Departmental Stores, SaSa, DFS


- - 

Lanvin Eclat D'arpage EDP



I bought this on a whim because my close friend has this perfume as well and smells AMAZING in it. I, for one, am not too big on describing scents, but I'll try. It's a cross between fruity and floral and the whole combination is delicate but not too girly. I think it's perfect for summer days and sundresses! The lilac color of the perfume just embodies the sweetness of the scent so well. 

There's just a slightly musky base, but really still more floral. A website says it smells like a mixture of refreshing green tea leaves and peony flowers. The visual fits but I'm not too sure how that smell is like exactly. Like I said, I'm bad at this, do forgive me. Head down to Sephora to really get a whiff (and addicted!) to this. 

P/S: Sorry my face looks so silly, Ash was making me laugh as she took the photo. Apparently her instructions were to "LOOK LIKE YOU'RE ENJOYING IT!" lol.

Price: $127 at Robinsons for 100ml (Eau De Parfum)

Stockists: Sephora, DFS, Departmental Stores


- - 

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Pot



Will I ever stop buying concealers? No. 

I love concealers so much. If you're a makeup addict, you'll understand what I mean by I'm a Concealer Girl. Ash is a Primer Girl. There's just that one product you can never get enough of! This, is a holy grail for me. I used to think my YSL was IT but this one kind of takes the cake. So hydrating for the undereye and not cakey in the slightest bit. Blends well with a Beauty Blender as well! 

The Secret Brightening Powder that it comes with also plays a fantastic role in just.. well. brightening up the eye area! If you're having one of those "I am a Panda, please kill me (not encouraging poaching here, nor am I saying that pandas should be killed)" days, this clears all your gloomy skies and makes you look WIDE AWAKE! WOOHOO!

Price: $54 at Laura Mercier at TANGS

Stockists: Sephora, TANGS


- - 

Elite Click and Glow 



I'm pretty sure I'm just driving my previous point home here. Except.. I posted this not as a better concealer for the undereye than Laura Mercier's (despite the picture!) but as an alternative to the YSL Touche Eclat. People have been saying we don't really post wallet friendly stuff, so here's one!

It's a godsend for a cheaper and just as worth it option to smoothen out and lighten those nasal labial lines around your mouth or even your crows feet! The consistency is also rather pigmented, so you could go ahead and use it to cover acne scars and the like! 

Elite has been a pretty high ranking makeup brand, and goes hand in hand with the Elite Model Agency who's managed pretty big names in the modeling business! If their models love the products, so will you! Plus! Where better to find it at than Watsons? Everyone loves Watsons, full stop.

Price: about $19.90 at Watsons

Stockists: Watsons at Bugis Junction (as far as I know)


- - 

YSL's Lipliner in Shade 03



Say hello to my first ever lipliner! People have been constantly talking about how important lipliner is, and how it's like a primer to face foundation! Store assistants at makeup counters have also mentioned how easy it is to shape lips and fill in lipsticks as well as extend their color-lasting properties!

I personally have always been afraid of that weird outline around the lips which I'm sure many of you have seen on women before. It just looks unsightly.. and a little Jersey-Shore-ish... When I see women like that I am always tempted to talk to them in a slightly nasal whiny American Accent..

Thank God my fears have been put to rest with this lipliner because it can be blended in with the entire lip so you escape that horrific fate, and the color is so beautiful! When matched with any lipstick, the color becomes more vibrant, and the staining effect after eating is more obvious. It puts aside the need for additional lipstick touchups, or at least lessens the need for it. Do be sure to BLEND though and color in your WHOLE lip, because the effects will be much better!

Price: $35 at YSL Counters

Stockists: TANGS, Ion, DFS


- - 




I've come to the end of my July Favorites! Are there any you guys are curious about? Drop a comment and let me know! :)

We're sorry our posts have been weaning out, but now that we're back, we're prepared to have loads more to read now. Apparently we're a lot more inspired when we're together! Yay! :)




Happy Start to August Everyone!
()
Sam
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July 30, 2013

Review: Epiduo Gel for Acne


About awhile ago, I decided that my facials weren't quite cutting it for my chin acne situation. I do not link this to any inefficiency or incapability on my facial therapist's part as hormonal acne is mostly best treated with prescribed medicine than store-bought ones.

Since I've battled with acne since I was 17, I've always known drugstore brand acne creams do not work on me. Not Clearasil, not Simple, not Clean N' Clear, nothing. So I went to Singapore's National Skin Center, explained my situation, and left with the Epiduo Gel.


Introduction

Epiduo (adapalene and benzoyl peroxide) Gel 0.1%/2.5% is the only antibiotic-free, topical acne treatment that combines two hardworking medicines, adapalene and benzoyl peroxide, to help clear up the breakouts you have now and help prevent future pimples from forming. It also comes in a convenient pump, so treating and preventing breakouts can quickly become a part of your everyday routine.

Benzoyl peroxide is one of the two effective medicines in Epiduo Gel. It's an antimicrobial which kills the bacteria that lead to breakouts and helps prevent pimples from coming back.
Adapalene is a type of retinoid, and the other medicine in Epiduo Gel. It unclogs blocked pores, helping to stop acne from forming under the skin's surface and decreasing the redness, swelling and inflammation associated with pimples.
Having both ingredients in a single treatment could also mean fewer co-pays. Use a pea-sized amount daily, and you may only need a refill once every 3 months.

Horror Stories
I've been reading tons of horror stories online about Epiduo. Some people say it breaks them out in cystic acne (YIKES!) when they've never had it before; some others say they have terrible breakouts before the skin starts to heal! I HATE THAT! I hate the whole "purge before getting better" deal.. Why can't things just get better from the word go!? But maybe I just expect too much.

Anyway, despite the horror stories, there are also those that claim Epiduo to be their saviour. I think it's to each their own... Like how the Clarisonic is a godsend to many but just "meh" to me. I also never actually suffered a purge from that, though others apparently did.


Packaging

Epiduo comes in a tube form, which I find sanitary. The product is excreted (does that sound gross? lol) by simply applying pressure. The tube is about 15g, and is portable should you need to take it with you when you travel.


Usage

It's simple to use but difficult to control. The instructions are to use a pea-sized amount ONCE a day to THE WHOLE affected area (eg. the entire chin) in the evening after cleansing. Some people feel safer when they spam a product..but I highly suggest staying away from that method with this gel..



When used in too high a dosage, burning sensations can be felt and there will be redness and peeling. People have supposedly reported that their acne disappears quickly but their skin looks sunburnt and painful! So I suggest to really just limit the amount to about the end of a Q-tip so you don't overdo things. Less is definitely more in this case.

What I personally do is squeeze a pea size dot of the medication to the affected spots (so it's more concentrated in those areas) and slowly thin the gel out to a uniform layer above my chin. After about 30 minutes or so, I apply a very very thin layer of Dr Hauschka's Melissa Day Cream on top so my skin doesn't dry out.


Experiment

So I'm going to go on this gel for about 4 weeks and chronicle how it goes.... I'll take photos at the end of each week so you guys can decide for yourself whether the product really works! As I'm typing this, I'm wishing myself luck lol. I DO NOT want cystic acne nor a purge of any kind.


Before

Well here's a before picture, because all experiments require a constant haha. Anyway, as you can see, my chin is a horrible mess. Just a horrible messy spotchy mess that depresses me. There is redness everywhere and new ones seem on their way out just as the old ones have just died..... *cries dramatically into a pillow*.

If this picture looks familiar, it's because I took it from this post. (It's about Hormonal Acne)

Week 1 (Monday 10 June - Sunday 16 June)


There is definite improvement! But my skin is starting to dry and flake out like most reviews say it would. My scars are lightening and lessening too!

The weirdest (but also best) phenomenon that's going on is my whiteheads are being forced out! It's so weird to see it because it looks like snakes poking their heads out of the ground.. or like those garden eels bobbing in and out of the sand at Sentosa's Maritime Museum. The whiteheads are literally out of the skin and ready for plucking! I literally use my fingernails to grab onto the single whitehead and pull it out! No squeezing no nothing. Pretty cool eh?

Week 2 (Monday 17 June - Sunday 23 June)

There is way less peeling now, though my skin is still a little dry/dehydrated-looking... Hmm..Seems like my skin has gotten a little more used to the medicine. Yay! There is still a little scarring here and there but I believe these things take time. Now and then, I do use Dr Hauschka's Rejuvenating Mask to try and lighten the dark spots. 


The whiteheads no longer poke out on their own, but that's fine because they've lessened TREMENDOUSLY. To about 80% less. When there is the odd blackhead or whitehead, I just (*sigh this is a beauty sin.. I know) use that metal loop otherwise known as "pimple poppers" to gently press it out. I don't have to apply much pressure because it's always "ripe" enough to come out. So wonderful! Hope it stays this way.

Week 3 (Monday 24 June - Sunday 30 June)

Well so far so good! I do not have one of those horror stories to tell whereby, after a week, everything goes to shit. My skin is obviously getting way better! As you can already tell from the photo, the tone is starting to get a little more even. I don't get whiteheads too *phew* and the scars are definitely lightening! I feel so lucky I ever got introduced to this cream, you won't believe it. Now it's for the final week, and I'm really hoping for great things by the end of it!


Week 4 (Monday 1 July - Sunday 7 July)

Here is where it gets a little hard for me to put my finger on; I am unsure whether these results are due to the Epiduo cream's "purging" or ineffectiveness, or that I've recently added a new skincare item into my routine.

I have been a little "itchy", so I got some samples of SKII's Facial Treatment Essence to try out. At this point it's been about 2 weeks thereabout.. and I've heard some people talk about how it makes them break out (initially), so I'm thinking maybe that's what's happening? I definitely hope it lasts no longer than 1-2 weeks.. Anyway so this is proof that the Epiduo is more of an "attack" rather than a "defence" cream. It fights what comes out but does not prevent what COULD appear. I guess that's a pretty good experiment to have tried, though I regret the consequences a little.. lol. Vanity really comes with such a price. 

I've no complaints though, everything still seems under control and I am still happier with my chin than I have in months. :)


Overall Thoughts

Wow. I have to say WOW. I battled forehead acne a long time ago and forgot just how distressed I could be till this chin issue came up. Unlike my forehead, which is extremely prominent, I am lucky that my chin was still rather "hidden" so I was not forced to smear makeup on the area (which ultimately would make it worse) or try too many creams and masks out of desperation.

It did come to a point, though, whereby I thought, okay this needs professional help. I admit, I did not go to the National Skin Center for my chin acne originally - I went because my leg is recently experiencing a bout of eczema and I had to get some medication for it.. Anyway the doctor saw my chin whilst I was talking about my leg and he asked whether I'd like something prescribed for it. It never occurred to me to really trust him because I went to the same place about 5 years ago for my forehead acne and their medicines did nothing for me at all. -_-

LUCKILY this was the one time where my woes were all driven away, and I am so so so so thankful for it. I am happy I gave it a try, and I am happy it worked. I honestly feel like the luckiest person alive! 

I did get new spots, as mentioned in Week 4, but I am not sure what that could be the cause of. The doctor did prescribe me some medication called Clindamycin to tackle new ones that pop out (perhaps due to one of Epiduo's side effects of purging) so I've just been using that for now. Overall, I am still one satisfied customer.


Update in Another Month

Hi! So it's been about 2 good months that I've tried this out, and I must say it's pretty damned awesome. My blackheads/whiteheads have stopped popping out crazily and my scarring is starting to slowly (but surely) disappear! :) As you can see, there is slightly less redness, about 20-30%! The scars at the bottom of my chin seem to be taking a little longer than the others.

To those who wondered how things are going, I've been using less and less of Epiduo each night before I sleep. Hopefully I can go without it soon! xx

PS - sorry the lighting is a little different! The photo is still true to real life!

Recommended For
  • Those facing adult acne
  • Those facing recurring/active acne
  • Those who do not have overly sensitive skin
  • Those who have acne concentrated in an area rather than the whole face
  • Those who face more issues with whiteheads than pustules
Would I Repurchase

Hell to the yes! Though of course I hope my skin won't be reliant on this product, I am more than willing to repurchase if it comes down to it. Who cares if my skin NEEDS this, as long as I've found something that cures the issue I'm down.

I know some people will say, "but this cures the symptom and not the issue!!" And I'm not going to say they're wrong. But I'm going to hope that this is just a hormonal phase, and maybe 6 months to a year down the road, it'd get rid of itself. :)

Overall Rating: 7.5/10 (because it really depends on skin type)

PS: I know it took me very long to get this post up, but I hope you've been patient! I wanted to be as thorough as I could before posting! :)



Have any of you guys tried this before?
Comment and let us know :)
 )
Sam

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July 24, 2013

Hair care:Shiseido Professional Hair Treatment for Damaged Hair


Hi pretty ladies,

Having been out under the sun, having my hair submerged in both chlorine and sea water - has really and truly taken a toll on my hair condition. It got to the point where I could no longer brush through my hair without having to stop to comb through the knots. My Dad suggested I do a Shiseido Treatment, and seeing that the Shiseido products have worked really well for me,  I placed the care of my hair in my dad's hands.

I have used Shiseido Professional Hair products before and they've worked out amazingly, you can click here to read all about it. If you guys have been hitting the pool a lot and have realized that all that chlorine is drying your hair out, this might be a solution that you can explore!

Problems Faced


I mean isn't that just painful to look at?! In the picture you can tell that I've got quite a number of split ends and that my hair is really dry. My hair was... well the photo speaks for itself. Horrible. Dry. Frizzy.

The Products
1. Shiseido Profession Aqua Intensive Multi Care Milk ( Damaged Hair )
2. Shiseido Professional Luminogeni Mask ( Coloured Hair )
3. Shiseido Professional Luminogenic Treatment ( Coloured Hair )

I swear, I've never ever had softer hair before. I'm not sure that every hair salon has the same treatment line up avaliable to you, but these are the products that my dad has put together to overcome to problems that I face with my given hair condition.

The Process













































































Before the treatment process began, the split ends of my hair were cut off because it was getting far too long and as you can tell, wasn't very healthy looking. I'd say about 2 and a half inches of my hair was cut off.

Step One:  Divide and Conquer! 
Like I said, navigating through my hair was pretty tough because it was dry and just hard to manage. So here They've started to divide my hair into sections and applied product number one! Which is the Shiseido Profession Aqua Intensive Multi Care Milk for damaged hair.

Step Two: Letting it Sit
After the product has been applied to every section of my hair, it's then put up in a bun and left under the Steamer for 10 mins.  After which, my hair is left to cool off and then it's rinsed off.

Step Three: Mask Two & Three
Step Three embodies the application of the two other products, Shiseido Professional Luminogeni Mask ( Coloured Hair ) and the Shiseido Professional Luminogenic Treatment ( Coloured Hair ). I believe each product was left to set for about 10 minutes each.

Step Four: The Grand Reveal
After Rinsing out the product, my hair is then blown out to reveal the unbelievably soft and smooth hair.

Before and After
Overall Thoughts


My hair is incredibly smooth, Of course Trimming the dead ends off have made a difference but just the overall look of my hair is a lot healthier and easier to manage. I can run my hands through my hair without encountering any knots and rest assured that was what I did for the rest of the night haha.  In case you were wondering, I did not have my hair straightened but just blown out.

After two washes, my hair is still incredibly soft and comfortable. No fuss despite the horrible humid weather we have in Hong Kong at the moment. I feel that I have hair equivalent to those depicted in TV commercials.

Overall Rating: 9 / 10

Price : HK$600 / 700 + @ Wing Tang Hair 
All Shiseido Professional Products can only be found at hair salons, they do not sell them elsewhere. Should you want the same treatment done for you, you can head over to the Wing Tang Hair Salon at Kowloon Shangri-La, Hong Kong.  The treatment for my hair length I believe is about HK$700. The price varies on the length of your hair but it starts from 600 + .

Should you want to buy the Shiseido Professional Products mentioned within the post, You can also purchase them at the Wing Tang Hair salon to do this treatment at home :) !

To make an appointment: (+852) 2739 0671 

Address: Kowloon Shangri-La, 64 Mody Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui East, Hong Kong

Opening hours: 9 am - 6:30 (last appointment) 


Hellooooo soft and silky hair! 
Much Love
()
Ashley




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July 18, 2013

Review: Bobbi Brown Long- Wear Gel Eyeliner


Awarded 'Best of Beauty' by 'Allure' Magazine (2012) , Winner of '50 Best Beauty Products 2013' by 'Siempre Mujer Magazine' and Selected as a "Best Beauty Buy" by InStyle Magazine (May 2013). 
The infamous Bobbi Brown Long- Wear Gel Eyeliner -  is it truly worth the hype? 

Despite having dupes in the market, I still felt the need to try the product first hand to get what the hype was all about. I guess that comes with every beauty/ makeup addict huh ? haha - I justified my purchase simply because I do use eyeliner almost every day whenever I'm out because I like the way it defines my eyes and makes my lash line looks a lot bolder. 

About
This award-winning liner gives you the look of liquid liner with the ease & feel of a gel formula. Long-wearing, water-resistant color glides on & let's you get it just right before it dries - then stays without a smear or crease. 

Packaging
Pretty standard packaging, being the clutz I am I've dropped it a couple times through rushing to get ready in the mornings and it's still in perfect shape! Like with any other gel liner, you just have to remember to screw the cap on tightly so that air doesn't seep in to dry out your gel liner :)

Texture

The gel is very smooth, pigmented and is creamy enough for the brush to glide without tugging on your eyelid throughout application. The colour is more intense than the drugstore dupe from Maybelline. It might look a little dry but I assure you its because I got slightly sun burnt on my hands and the skin on the area is just dry. 

Application

To each their own, there are different way to apply your gel eyeliner depending on the brush you've selected. I've gone for a precise eye liner brush that I picked up from the drugstore years ago. Here i did a very standard line, no wing no nothing.

Before & After 
As you can see the pigmentation of the liner serves its purpose, even without mascara, my lash line doesn't look as sparse and my eye looks slightly bolder.

Overall Thoughts






I wouldn't say I have insanely oily eyelids but if it were on a scale of  1- 10 i'd place it at 3. Applying the product in the morning is done without hassle, and it stays in place. However over time I find that it does smear a little onto the top of my eyelid. The best way to go about it is by either applying a eye primer or setting your gel liner with a eyeshadow to set it in place.

Compared to other gel eyeliners, I'd have to say that this has definitely held up the best so far. As mentioned, I do like the pigmentation of this product and the way it looks once applied and I've got no problem with the application process at all.

Recommended For
Anyone starting out with eyeliner - Liquid liners can be tricky to deal with just because of its wet consistency but with the gel liner its easier to draft out your eyeliner.

Would I repurchase
I've used the Maybelline Gel liner which has been known as a dupe for the bobbi brown long- wear gel eyeliner and I feel that the bobbi brown liner is slightly more pigmented. The consistency is pretty much the same. I'd say I'd go back for the bobbi brown gel liner just because of the pigmentation and the fact that people have said that it's lasted them for about a year and half!

Stockist: HK$210 at any bobbi brown counters

Overall Rating: 7.5 / 10 


What's your favourite eyeliner of the moment?
Much Love
()
Ashley

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July 15, 2013

Information: Hormonal Acne (Women)



Today I'm writing about something that hits very close to home: Hormonal Acne. This is different from most other types because THERE'S JUST NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT. By "nothing you can do about it" I mean that no amount of facials or creams or topical medication you use actually comes to anything.

Okay, to simplify things, here's some background on Hormonal Acne

How to Identify

All of us have different types of acne (besides those who are blessed with extremely good skin *life is unfair*): some of us have comedones, some of us have blackheads that just won't get off our noses, and some of us have acne vulgaris. It all varies, but their common ground is that no one likes or wants them.

Hormonal acne CAN look typical, but you can differentiate them by the time they choose to appear at. For females, this can happen at ovulation, a few days before one's menses, or the very day itself. This does happen in cycles, but is not exclusive to that. Sometimes, it can occur due to hormonal problems such as PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome). This is, of course, one of the more severe situations, so don't be too quick to jump to the conclusion that you have it too,

What They Look Like



Most of the time, hormonal acne present themselves in the forms of cysts. I am sure most of you know what Cystic Acne looks like, and even if you didn't, I took the courtesy of finding you one that doesn't look so gag-inducing (Not saying that people who have it are disgusting, but some internet pictures really test boundaries, I'm sure you've seen those types of pictures). In fact, it's one of me, and one I put up quite awhile ago in this post

They can also present themselves in comedones and small pimples. Like a mixed nut party pack lol. It's just a jumble of crappiness on your face. As you can see, I do have some cysts (typically pus-filled and red), some whiteheads, and some headless bumps. Those are THE WORST by the way because you can't get rid of them - you just wait and wait till they either appear or go away.

Places They Commonly Appear



Hormonal Acne appears most commonly on the lower part of the face; For instance, they appear around the mouth, on the chin area, lower cheeks, and jawline. If it worsens, however, it can even spread to your forehead and upper cheeks.

If there is none around your mouth/lower face area, chances are high that your acne has nothing to do with hormones at all.

WHY WHY WHY ME!?



Because no one likes you, that's why. KIDDING. If you want an emotional answer, it's just one of life's lemons being thrown at you so deal with it.

If you want a completely logical, scientific answer, it's because of the oil glands working overtime under your skin. Instead of being regulated, and spewing let's say... 10g/hr, your face has become an oil spill below the surface. And since the oil has to go somewhere... it appears in the form of acne. What makes it worse, is that it isn't always easy to eliminate. Sometimes, it looks ripe and you think it's good to pop it.. only to realize it doesn't pop at all. So your face is left red, inflamed and, worst of all, scarred.

Do note that washing your face 10x a day will not solve this oil problem. The issue is happening internally more than externally. Moreover, over washing your face will only make your skin dehydrated, and your body will produce more oil to compensate.

In some cases, your body could be producing more testosterone than estrogen, which also explains the hormone imbalance. That is also why your skin's flare-ups commonly occur during ovulation, which is when testosterone levels hit their peak and your estrogen drops.

What's The SOLUTION Then?

Time. Time is the solution. Honestly. Only time will cure this sick occurrence. Medication, facials, and what not help lessen the issue and curb the inflammation, but the whole phase really just needs time to finish.

In the meantime, try not to be too stressed out or pick at it. Also, stay away from the typically unhealthy foods and dairy. Dairy is often said to be an acne aggravator, as it can increase testosterone in the body. Nuts and grains should also be taken in moderation. 

If you really HAVE TO HAVE TO HAVE TO get rid of it ASAP, well you can go to a dermatologist to see what your options are. Otherwise, you can opt for Birth Control Pills (BCPs) which are supposed to regulate your hormones and thus lessen your acne. There are side effects to BCPs, however, so do be careful and do your research before deciding to go for it. There are some topical medications known to work, such as Differin, Fucicort, Epiduo, but it really depends on your skin type as well. 

When it comes to Hormonal Acne, I would wholeheartedly recommend seeing a doctor rather than purchasing over the counter products, really.

If none of these work, you may have PCOS. In this case, it's best to get some blood work so you know where to go from there.

Conclusion

I'm sorry to say that hormonal acne seems like it'd never go away, and sometimes it can be the case because you'd never know just how long it feels like staying on your face.

Don't be disheartened though, you're not the only one going through it (YOU HAVE ME, HEY!) and many people are dealing with the same sad issue. Look on the bright side, try to have plenty of exercise, eat healthily, and DRINK LOTS OF WATER! I cannot even begin to mention how important water is. It helps hydrate your body and lessen the need for oil production in your body, which could help a lot.


Hope this has been
informational for those
of you who've been suffering!
()
Sam

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July 10, 2013

Award: Very Inspiring Blogger Award

Happy Wednesday Lovelies! :) 

We are thrilled that a dear friend of ours Linda, also known as SilverKis, has nominated us for the "Very Inspiring Blogger Award" ! Do feel free to head on over to her blog for great beauty reviews as well :) 


Rules of the Blogger Award:
  1. Display the award logo on your blog
  2. Link back to the person who nominated you
  3. Nominate 10 other bloggers for this award and link to them
  4. Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements.
Without Further Ado, here are our 10 nominations for this award ! 

 Maddy - Unstitched 
Lily - LLYMRLS
Ashly Rae - Ashlylondon
Amelia - xameliax
Jasmine/Angela - The Happy Sloths
Jenny - Krystel Couture
CharlesAngel Lacson - Wickermoss
Natasha - Shot of Beauty
Melissa - The Life of a Not So Ordinary Housewife


We'd like to take this opportunity to thank each and everyone of you who have supported throughout the journey that we've embarked on so far, without your constant support or feedback through comments, we wouldn't be as motivated to come up with as many posts as we have. Cheesy, but It has to be said because we've achieved things that we thought weren't possible within a short period of time and we only have our lovely readers to thank for that! 

Thanks Linda for the nomination!
Much Love,
()
Samantha and Ashley



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Advertorial: Der Anthyllis Organic Facials

Hey Dears,

today I've got a very special advertorial for you! I've written about this particular facial place and it's amazing services here, but that was awhile back, and some changes have been made. On top of that, there's a very special discount just for our readers during this GSS period! Read more to find out :)


Location

The first, and most prominent, change is that the facial's location is no longer situated at Orchard Plaza, and is now at Forum Galleria instead. I know that this is a huge improvement for many who might feel irked by Orchard Plaza (based on the feedback I've received), saying that it's a slightly dodgy area and that they don't feel comfortable going there. Well no worries! Now it's been moved to a swanky new place right beside Hilton Hotel!

The exact address is: 583 Orchard Road, Forum Galleria #08-03 (via office lift), Singapore 238884

Contact: Amy (+65 9797 8559)


The Premises

Der Anthyllis is not standalone shop, meaning that you wouldn't see the sign the moment you step out of the lift. Amy, my facial therapist, has a room inside a shop called Immanuel Beauty & Wellness. Do not belittle this idea though, because the ambience she has created in that room itself is spectacular. It is cosy and beautifully decorated.

As you can see in the pictures, everything is so wonderfully organized that it sets even the fussiest people's hearts at ease. I always feel surrounded by calm and serenity the moment I walk into the room; with the soft music playing in the background, accompanied with the most fragrant hot tea placed in my hands. You will never have had an experience like this before, I promise you.


The Facial Treatment

I love this about Amy's facials because they are all customized. I do not have to pay exorbitantly nor get tricked into little "terms and conditions" here and there just because she probably used 5g of a new product - I think you guys know facial places like that, because I do -_-.. Anyway! She constantly reassesses my skin with each visit and decides the best course of treatment for me.


Most of the time it's pretty typical (Cleansing, Steaming, Extraction, Masks) because I suppose my skin is not facing any major issues. Whilst I make a big hooha about my chin, I know people who definitely suffer way worse skin woes than I do... Amy is aware that I'm extremely particular about my skin, and that I get very (and legitimately) upset when my skin doesn't behave. For that, I really respect and appreciate her because she doesn't make light of my situation, no matter how small, and always reassures me that I can surely get better.


The Evidence

I am not gonna show you some really old messed up photos of my face and talk about how she saved my life with just facials alone (though you can click the link I gave in the first paragraph to see my experience). I think it is an important point to drive home that facials only AID the process of recovery and are not the end-all-be-all solution. Diligent skincare should be done at home as well. 

However, I have to say that one way facial has helped me that I could have never achieved on my own is how much more even, radiant, and firm my skin has become than before. I no longer wake up in the morning with a ruddy dull look (though I do still have tiny pores at the inner corner of my cheeks) and my fine lines, as far as I know, are way better than people younger and of the same age as me! 

Also, I hope I don't sound too complacent, but I do honestly feel proud that I need not wear any face/base makeup such as foundation or primer or bb cream whatsoever to feel confident enough to leave the house. I honestly just slap on sunblock, undereye concealer, eyeliner, blush, lipstick, and I'm good to go! 15 minutes is all I need (because I'm quite meticulous/slow when concealing my dark rings) and I think that's pretty good already!


GSS Promotion

So yes, after all that big talk, here's the deal. If you think I'm exaggerating, why not try out just one session for yourself?

From now till mid-August, Amy's offering a wonderful trial price of only $59 (and she never ever skimps on products used, no matter the price point).

Just quote "Samantha Ashley" for this special offer, and enjoy it, it's on us! ;) 

As someone who's even tried the lousiest of facials in China, I think that price is more than okay! Especially for a location in Orchard Road! Since many of you have taken our advice on many beauty products and given us feedback on how much you like them, why not try this one out? 

P/S: For those who think that facials are those "death traps" whereby your skin will get worse once your stop going back for them, don't be silly. Of course your skin requires maintenance to get consistent results, but even if you didn't go back, your skin will not deteriorate, I assure you! :)
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July 8, 2013

Skincare: Cleansers of the moment


Hi beautiful faces! :)

YES. before any questions come up, I have gotten a tan and hence my skintone is a couple shades darker from being at work and out by the pool. 

Anywho , I'm a sucker for trying out new cleansers whenever I head over to the drugstore or read about it on other beauty blogs. So over the course of the couple of months that I've been back in Hong Kong, I got to try a couple of facial cleansers and I'd thought I'd do a quick summary of what I think of the cleansers. So far, none of them have particularly WOW-ed me as of yet and hence I've not put together a full review. Should you want a more in-depth review on any of the cleansers I'm about to mention, please let me know in the comments :) 


Cleanser 
A popular type of cleanser is a facial care product that is used to remove make-up, dead skin cells, oil, dirt, and other types of pollutants from the skin of the face. This helps to unclog pores and prevent skin conditions such as acne.
- wikipedia 

Simple Cleanser
This is my current daily morning cleanser of the moment to remove impurities that might have accumulated overnight on my face. The gel textured cleanser has no scent, its soap free and incredibly gentle. Its probably a cleanser in the most simplest form ever that gets the job done. 

I've heard great things about the Simple line and after using their cleanser, I will most likely go back and try some more of their products. I'm also quite drawn to using a scrub all the time which can over dry my skin and hence this is a nice switch-up. I can feel that my skin feels refreshed and hydrated without feeling any sort of menthol-ness after each use.  

This was also featured in my June Favourites which you can read here.

Overall rating: 7.5  / 10 
Recommended for: 
- It's as simple as it can get, perfect for all skin types and everyday use. 


Kiehls Rare Earth Deep Pore Daily Cleanser

I've not tried very many Kiehls products before and received this in my goodie bag upon attending Nouveau Fashion show a couple months back. The light watery clay formula is extremely gentle, I've noticed that the size o my pores have been reduced but only by about 10%.

This product doesn't have a strong scent and doesn't over dry my skin. However because it is targeted towards oilier skin, I wasn't able to see a significant change. There have been reviews online that have said that their skin isn't as oily and that its perfect for everyday use. I'm sure it's a decent product but one of the reasons I'm unable to do a full review is that the cleanser isn't quite targeted towards my skin type. 

Current Rating: 6 /10
Recommended for: 
Oily/ Combination skin 


Kao's Biore Whitening Facial Foam

I'll be extremely honest, I don't quite like this product. It makes my skin feel rather taught and despite being another gentle facial scrub, I don't like the way my skin feels right after each use. It has a very light and fresh scent, isn't menthol at all. I am not able to say if it has whitened my skin because I've been out under the sun and mostly because I just don't like the way it makes my skin feels.  

Bioré has come up with several good products but this isn't one of them. I still remember using it for the first time, where my skin felt itchy and dry

Rating so far:   4 /10
Recommended for:  N/A 

Proactive Deep Cleansing facial Wash


I'm not too sure if its the weather or if its the time of the month - but! there are times where pimples start appearing out of no where and it really bugs me. My brother uses the proactive line and I happened to use this one day and the next morning the size of my pimples were instantly reduced! One of the main concerns about acne products is that they might over dry your skin, but to my surprise the proactive facial wash left my skin extremely smooth and hydrated instantly.

I only use the product whenever I have multiple breakouts on my face because too much of the product might just make my skin immune to its effects. Furthermore I am truly blessed with fairly clear skin and I didn't see the need to use this on a daily basis. What I can say though, is that my brother has been using the proactive line for a good 4 months and I can already see quite a significant difference. 

Overall Rating: 8 /10
Recommended for: 
- acne prone skin for both men & ladies 

Clinque 7 day scrub 
I've had the luxury of having to go through about 3 deluxe sample sizes of these due to them being free gifts and I've grown to love them especially during the winter time. I feel that this particular cleanser has sort of a cream undertone to it to combat the dryness we might experience over winter time. 

The beads within are very tiny and aren't harsh at all, much like the philosophy micro-exofliating facial wash. Perfect for removing dry skin and I've noticed that I don't break out as often whilst using the product. Its not something that I feel creates a significant difference after each use but passes off as a decent gentle exfoliating facial scrub.

Overall rating: 5.5 / 10
Recommended for: 
- Dry Skin or anyone on the hunt for a gentle cream based facial exfoliant

Final Thoughts






Right now, I can confidently say that amongst the 5 Cleansers that I've tried out, I've come out to love these two very much. The simple cleanser is a must-have for me just to do the most fundamental job of removing impurities whilst keeping my skin hydrated and the Proactive Deep Cleansing Wash to keep my skin looking clear and away from having extreme breakouts! Should you want individual reviews on anything please let me know. If you guys have had experiences with any of the products that i've mentioned feel free to share in the comments :) 

What's your favourite Cleanser of the moment?
Much Love
()
Ashley

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July 7, 2013

Instagram update: Summer 2013

Hi lovelies :)

Our summer break is coming to a close and I wanted to share with you a couple of events that have happened over the past couple of months through photographs that can be found on my instagram "@ashleytx16" :)


1// Bliss
Everyone has their own sanctuary, and for me its about spending time on my roof. I enjoy taking time to think or read just to clear my head the view at sunset is definitely a plus ;) We don't really have much going on on our roof just a deck chair and an open space, but its become one of my favourite spots to go to on my off days. 

2// Macau
I've done sailing for about 5 years now and about two weeks ago, one of my best friends and I went over to Macau for an international race with the boat club we sail at. It was the first time I've travelled with a friend alone to another place. We had so much fun just hanging out with the rest of the team at the pool before and after races and of course being able to have a hotel rooms to ourselves.  We stayed at the Westin which was away from the city of Macau which was nice. It was right up the beach and they had pretty amazing facilities. I'd definitely see myself going back to the Westin for a short getaway in the near future.

3//  Hoist! 
This shot was taken during the races, the races were all a close call and we came in second in our boat category. I always find myself learning new techniques or just polishing up on skills that I've learnt every time I race.  Racing in Macau just re-ignited my passion for sailing and I might want to start it up again when I'm back in Singapore should my busy schedule permit, haha.

4// Lights, Camera , Action
I got to attend a hair show with my dad and for those of you who are wondering what camera I use to take my photographs for my blogposts, its a Canon EOS M. In my opinion it doesn't focus extremely fast but once it does, its of pretty high quality and the video quality is also pretty decent :)

5//  Malibu Galore
I've gotten a lot tanner just by working under the sun and of course the many pool trips. I will be doing a suncare / what's in my pool / beach bag video very soon as my week seems to have a couple of empty slots for me to film. This is no doubt a must-have in my bag if I want to catch a tan! It smells just like Malibu and it doesn't leave my skin feeling sticky.

6// Kisses
Kisses Cupcakes. OMG. They're So good, I bought a set of three for my brother right after his graduation :) They have some pretty cool flavours from pandan to ferro rocher! I took a bite out of Lucas's Ferro Rocher cupcake and it is absolutely heavenly. I'm always tempted to have one whenever I'm at K11 or TST as I've yet to try their red velvet !! I believe they're HK$25 for a cupcake but It looks a little bigger compared to the infamous Sift cupcakes.


If you have any requests for any beauty posts/ videos please let us know and we'd be more than happy to consider doing them :) I hope you all have had a wonderful weekend and should you want to see more of our instagram photographs feel free to follow the following accounts :)

Sam - @samjoyloh
Ashley- @ashleytx16
Our Blog Instagram- @SamanthAshley_ 

Be sure to look out for a beauty post tmrw!
much love,

()
Ashley


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